Community Right to Know


Right-to-Know Across the Nation

The Philadelphia ordinance was reported in media across the country. It served as a template for other local and state initiatives, and approximately 18 states and 30 local communities enacted some type of right-to-know law in the subsequent years.

The Law Center was especially closely involved in the passage of the New Jersey Right-to-Know Act, signed in 1983, which was recognized as the most comprehensive legislation of its kind. In the second largest chemical manufacturing state in the country, it provided the broadest coverage and protection for workers and community. The Law Center worked with a coalition of state politicians and labor, environment, fire fighter, and community groups to help design the NJ law. Citizen involvement became an irresistible force, and the bill passed both houses of the legislature overwhelmingly.