The collective voice of scientists across the nation has been hard to miss over the past week, as members of the scientific community have begun preparations for their own march on Washington. But in the midst of this national discourse, it can be easy to lose sight of how important the contributions of the scientific community are in our own backyard. Indeed many of our fellow North Carolinians live in unsafe environments because of their race, ethnicity, and income. Remedying this sort of injustice is exactly why the North Carolina Environmental Justice Network was created.
As a coalition of community organizations and their supporters, NCEJN’s mission of promoting health and environmental equality for North Carolinians is one they take seriously. They are a forum for community action working toward clean industry, safe workplaces and fair access to all human and natural resources through organizing, advocacy, research, and education. The group focuses specifically on discriminatory practices and policies of businesses, government agencies, and other organizations in positions of power.
Through regular meetings and an annual flagship event, the Environmental Justice Summit, NCEJN brings people together to educate, identify objectives, share ideas for participants to take back to their communities, and strengthen the resources available to those working for change. Issues such as lake cleanup, confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs), climate change, fracking, and landfills, are just a few of the many environmental issues the group works to address.
You can learn more about the work of the NCEJN by visiting their website at https://ncejn.wordpress.com/ or emailing them at firstname.lastname@example.org.