Environmental Rights

What are “environmental rights” and what do they have to do with Pilsen?

Social problems of race and class are often intertwined with environmental problems. PERRO feels that Pilsen is more prone to host businesses that contaminate the air and soil because of our neighborhood’s industrial legacy, the fact that it has a lower median income than other neighborhoods, and because the area has frequently been home to immigrants and is now predominantly Spanish-speaking.

One of Danny Solis’ objectives (as stated on the city website) has been to bring more industry to Pilsen. In this vein, he created a 1,000-acre tax-increment funding (TIF) district in Pilsen that offers tax breaks to industry. PERRO feels that a neighborhood that receives tax breaks for manufacturing should also receive assistance to make sure equipment is state-of-the-art and that industry’s byproducts do not decrease our quality of life.


  • See maps of poverty, language skills, education, and more in the 60608 area code, made with EPA’s Enviro-Mapper.
  • Selected US Polluters and Demographics of Neighborhood compared to Pilsen-Chicago

What should Pilsen residents do?

  • If you see pollution, call the complaint line at 312-744-7672 ASAP, 24 hours a day. Tell the operator where the pollution is coming from. If it is at night, ask for the night inspector to come out. Make certain you receive a confirmation number to track your complaint in the future. If you e-mail your complaint to PERRO, we can help you monitor its status.
  • Call Alderman Danny Solis at 312-843-1200 and tell him you are concerned about the pollution situation in Pilsen and that it’s important to you that action be taken.
  • If you would like PERRO to give a presentation at a church, business meeting, or to a school class, contact us.
  • E-mail PERRO to find out more information or join our electronic discussion list.