No Spray Coalition Board of Directors

*Mitchel Cohen, Coordinator
*Valerie Sheppard (R.I.P.)
*Jennifer Jager, Treasurer
*Cathryn Swan, Media Coordinator
Afrime Derti-Ottoway
Robert Lederman
Maris Abelson
Curtis Cost
Annette Averette
Howard Brandstein
Aton Edwards
* Member of Executive Committee

What began in 1999 as a tiny, isolated grassroots struggle in New York City against the spraying of Malathion to kill mosquitoes said to be carrying West Nile Virus has become a major effort with nation-wide consequences. Today, we align ourselves with many similar grassroots groups across the country and are inspired by their work. We share information, send our members to participate in anti-pesticide struggles elsewhere, and post their work to the NoSpray Coalition website.

Along the way, we have achieved numerous victories, such as

  • blocking multi-million dollar contracts to pesticide spraying corporations;
  • winning state-imposed fines of millions of dollars against a major contractor for poisoning its workers (thanks to the great work of the New York Environmental Law and Justice Project); and,
  • basically making the dangers of pesticides known to the vast number of people living in the New York metropolitan area.

And much, much more.

In the summer of 2000, the No Spray Coalition, Inc. filed a lawsuit as lead plaintiff against the New York City government (headed by then-Mayor Rudy Giuliani) to stop the pesticides spraying. Co-plaintiffs were:

  • No Spray Coalition, Inc.
  • National Coalition Against the Misuse of Pesticides, Inc. (now “Beyond Pesticides”)
  • Disabled in Action, Inc.
  • Save Organic Standards – New York (by its president, Howard Brandstein)
  • Valerie Sheppard
  • Mitchel Cohen
  • Robert Lederman
  • Eva Yaa Asantewaa

In 2005, federal court Judge Daniels ruled in favor of the Plaintiffs with regard to the main claim in interpreting the Clean Water Act. In 2007, NYC — the No Spray Coalition negotiated a stipulated Agreement with NYC (under a new Dept. of Health leadership). You can find those very important documents, including the all-important settlement agreement, on this website under “No Spray Lawsuit” — just click on that header, above. A number of other lawsuits across the country have found them to be very helpful.

Also, please download flyers from this site on the dangers of pesticide spraying and against the application of DEET and GLYPHOSATE, especially on children (DEET should never be used on children). Find informative scientific articles linking pyrethroids with breast cancer and dramatically lowered sperm counts. Please share (and send in more info!) on the alternative and non-toxic ways to address these issues. And, read our critique of the hysteria being orchestrated, first around West Nile, then Anthrax, SARS, Smallpox, Avian Flu and more, all “addressed” by officials who call in some cases for “quarantine camps” (Halliburton has already built them), more spraying, and mass inoculations as their answer, while ignoring the huge dangers of pesticides to people, animals, and the natural environment.

We can’t stress enough how important even a small contribution would be at this time. Thank you so much.

PayPal to Donate@NoSpray.org, or click on the “donate” button for credit cards. You may also send a check to:

No Spray Coalition
c/o Mitchel Cohen
2652 Cropsey Avenue, #7H
Brooklyn, NY 11214

*The No Spray Coalition is a not-for-profit organization registered with the State of New York, but it is not a 501-c-3; your contributions are NOT tax-deductible. However, if you wish to make a large contribution and deduct it from your taxes, please contact us beforehand.

We also want to acknowledge here those many wonderful initial organizers of this project who have since died — many from the effects of the pesticide spraying. We miss them all so very, very much and keep them dear in our hearts. They continue to inspire our thoughts and actions (and thinking of them and what they sacrificed just breaks us up in tears, and sometimes remembering them they make us laugh as well):

Susan Blake
Therese Chorun
Bryna Eill
Ibrahim Gonzalez
Saralee Hamilton
Connie Holland
Ralph Klaber
Robert Knight
Bill Kohnlein
Joel Kovel
Jim Krivo
Maria Kuriloff
Frank Lefever
Richard Levins
Grandpa Al Lewis
Carl Makower
Mike Pahios
Gloria Pasin
Valerie Sheppard (founding member & co-Treasurer)
Steve Tvedten
Brad Will
Frieda Zames


9 thoughts on “About”

  1. HI- I just came across your site and wanted to thank you for all the research and information. I’m in Jacksonville, FL and we are getting aerial sprayed with Naled. It’s criminal. We also have neighborhood foggers come through with permethrin. The city sends the fog trucks out if someone in the neighborhood calls and complains about mosquitos. I was asked to not have my yard sprayed and watched the truck blaze by my house at 10:30. It’s UNREAL.

    A group of concerned citizens are just in the process of unifying to stop this here in Jax. We have some connections at the local political level (we live at the beach) we’re hoping to ban aerial spraying throughout the city, but will start our fight at the beach and grow.

    I have never lead anything like this, and could use ANY suggestions.

    Many thanks for your time.

    Concerned citizen,

    Our FB page is Citizens against organophosphates- Jacksonville

    PS- used to live in NYC and am shocked/ deeply saddened to read some of your articles.



    You are cordially invited to a public hearing of the New York City Council Committee on Health on “Pesticide Use by City Agencies” including Introduction 800 of 2015 banning the use of chemical pesticides on City owned or leased property on Tuesday, September 26, 2017 at 10:00AM in the Council Chambers at City Hall, New York, NY 10007.


    Pesticides in parks would be limited by this legislation, which would require that the city use only biological pesticides, derived from natural materials, instead of synthetic, traditional pesticides — except under necessary circumstances.

    The EPA maintains that biological pesticides tend to be less toxic and safer than synthetic pesticides. Biopesticides are often more narrowly targeted to eliminate the desired pest, rather than affecting a broad range of organisms. According to the EPA, they are also often effective in small amounts and quickly decompose, making less of an environmental impact than synthetic pesticides. The City’s most heavily used liquid herbicide is Roundup, which they sprayed 1,365 times in 2013, according to a Health Department Report. Studies have indicated that Roundup is particularly harmful to children’s health.

    The legislation is available at http://legistar.council.nyc.gov/LegislationDetail.aspx?ID=2324740&GUID=8FCE5F72-F177-4F05-9417-DC43C1479D26


    Public hearings range in length from one to four hours. The Administration, experts, and members of the public are invited to present testimony split in to panels in favor or against. Experts and members of the public reading testimony are often limited to two minutes, though written testimony can be of any length and is submitted into the official record. If you plan to testify in person, please bring twenty (20) double-sided copies of your written testimony. Testimony may also be submitted for the official record within 24 hours of the hearing. Experts and members of the public are often asked questions following the panel’s testimony.


    Please share that you can testify by reply to Policy@BenKallos.com.

  3. From the experiences of those of us who served in the military during the Vietnam era (I was USMC 1972-78) it seems to me that being exposed to chemical agents for ANY reason, against your will, is “chemical assault” and an act of aggression that warrants the use of force to defend against.
    A very good example is Agent Orange, an “defoliant” that thousands of veterans have died from their exposure, or are in medical care now, or receiving compensation payments who to the man/woman will testify that they would rather have defended themselves with force than to experience the results of not having done so.
    It is obvious that America/Americans seem to go out of their way to keep from learning from their mistakes; and as a result repeat them.

  4. See our webpage at http://www.themindfuldissenters.com
    And in particular the page with the title, “A Solution”.
    Tarrant County has stopped spraying for Mosquitos. We believe this is as a result of our webpage and its impact.
    Find it, read it, and use it as an example to using the legal system to protect yourself from those who are determined to poison you, regardless of the logic or the facts that warrant the reverse actions.
    “If YOU do not protect yourself, you would be foolish to believe that anyone else would.

  5. We had whole city malathion spraying in Camarillo, CA in 1990 I believe. My two daughters developed ME/CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome) and one is bedbound. Another girl also has ME/CFS, another has a severe sleep disorder and ME/CFS symptoms. In our carpool of 5 little girls, four of them had dad’s who died of cancer in the next few years after the spraying. How many more children from that time and parents have been affective? Are you aware of any ongoing legal action on this issue? Is there a way to reach other people in our area that are affected? What can we do?
    Thank you so much

    • WE strongly suggest that you find competent legal counsel on this matter. From the information that you have provided, there surely are more people in the area that will be experiencing the same problems; this alone should be enough to interest the larger law firms in the area.
      Malathion has been in use for more than 50 years and of course the manufacturer claims it is safe and has no effect on the human (or other animal) population; but these companies are bound by their own survival needs to be less than honest so taking their word for anything is risky. The book titled “Silent Spring” published in 1962 revealed the hazards of DDT which was claimed by its manufacturer to be ‘safe’, and this was revealed later to be a blatant lie.
      We have found that the ONLY reliable manner to protect ones self from exposure to chemical agents is to be prepared to defend yourself with whatever force (including deadly force) is necessary to protect yourself and family from those who are more concerned with ‘profit’ than they are anything else. Make it highly dangerous for those who are dispensing the chemicals and the chemicals will not be dispensed; it really is that simple.

      • You recommended that we find legal assistance with our situation with
        Malathion spraying in our area. Where do we start? We are in Camarillo,CA 93010.

        Any recommendations or contacts to pursue?


Leave a Comment