The Malibu-based nonprofit Poison Free Malibu, founded by Joel and Kian Schulman, continues to pick up steam with its eventual goal to eliminate harmful pesticides from the environment—the kind that kill or harm wildlife, plants, humans and pets.
Last Friday, Poison Free Malibu officially announced that, with a grant from LA County Supervisor Sheila Kuehl, the group has been able to put up two billboards advertising the new umbrella organization Cities Against Rat Poisons or CARP. The billboards were up as of Sept. 8 near the intersections of Corbin and Nordhoff in Northridge and Sunset and Hobart in Los Feliz.
CARP stated that it is “a coalition of people, organizations and groups committed to raising awareness about poison free alternatives to deadly rodenticides, which inspired this critical outreach campaign.” Other chapters besides Malibu include Agoura Hills, Topanga, Calabasas and the Conejo Valley, along with partner groups Cougar Conservancy and Animazonia Wildlife Foundation.
“Rodenticides harm children, pets and countless wild animals across the U.S., but the problem of non-target poisoning is greatest in megacities like LA,” Kian wrote in a prepared statement. “Wild predators native to California such as cougars, bears, coyotes, bobcats, foxes, hawks and owls are increasingly common victims of rodenticides because rat poisons move through the food chain.”
The purpose of the billboards is to “give passersby an opportunity to reflect on the threat poisons pose to us, our pets, and local wildlife,” Kian explained. “We hope these billboards connect as many Angelenos as possible to educational opportunities and resources that will empower them to generate change in their communities by transitioning to poison-free rodent management practices.”
“Currently, there’s only a temporary state ban on some of the most harmful poisons, such as second generation anticoagulant rodenticides,” Carolyn Trocino, founder and director of Poison Free Agoura, also said in a prepared statement. “But many other [equivalent] poison compounds are still commercially available and widely used, such as first-generation anticoagulants and neurotoxins.”
“The debut of two new billboards targeting English and Spanish speaking Angelenos communicates a stark message: rodents aren’t the only ones poisoned by rat poison,” CARP spokespeople wrote. “Let’s break the poison chain.”