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Public Service Research Program

Photo: Entering Parlier

Entering Parlier

Air Quality & Environmental Health in a Rural San Joaquin Valley Community

I decided to start out at the library. It seemed like a safe place and a good way to ease into talking to people about Parlier since I could just ask about its history. So I walked up to the desk and asked the librarian if she had any information about Parlier. She handed me a binder with a bunch of random photocopied pages about Parlier in it. There weren't dates on a lot of the pages so it was hard to figure out if the information would still be accurate today. I flipped through that a bit - it talked about the founder, I.N. Parlier, Parlier's status as the "buckle of the raisin belt", a Parlier sumo wrestling team from 1932 etc. It also listed some of the major businesses, buildings and clubs and included a thesis by Larry Trujillo (Department of ethnic studies, UCB, 1978) entitled "Parlier: The Hub of Raisin America- A local history of capitalist development." I photocopied a few pages and returned the binder, asking the librarian if she had any suggestions of where I might go to learn more about the city. She suggested I head next door to the City Hall/community center. On the way out, I picked up a Guide to Health Programs and a pamphlet entitled "Hispanic-American Migrant Workers and Families in the Central Valley: a cultural crossroads bibliography." I then headed next door to city hall.

Project Challenge/Research Questions: To determine an appropriate and sustainable way to facilitate community involvement and interest in university research regarding air quality and health effects.

Liaison: Emily Meharg, Pharmacology & Toxicology, PhD program

Site: Parlier, San Joaquin County, CA

Partners: UCD Center for Health & the Environment, Western Center for Agricultural Health & Safety, Environmental Justice Project/JMIE, CA Department of Pesticide Regulation, UC Kearney Agricultural Field Station, and others.

Associated Projects/Research: Research on the relationship between agricultural practices, air particle size and composition, and health consequences conducted by Kent Pinkerton (CHE Director) and colleagues.

Project Time Line: 2006-2007

Funding: UC Davis Center for Health & the Environment