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The Peoples

Senate
A Model for Transforming Toxic Communities from
the Ground Up

Hazardous Waste and Race: A Toxic


Legacy

Toxic Communities Today

The Environmental Justice


Conundrum:
Siting inequalities stem from structural racism and systemic forces, but. .
.
Community-based environmental justice advocacy is inherently local.
Local campaigns address community priorities and build community power.
Advocates responsive to residents and do not set the agenda.
If we focus on the local ramifications of larger structural inequalities, we
wont fix the root problems and will expend a great deal of resources in
the process.
Can we, as a movement, improve our use community-based advocacy to
address systemic inequalities?

Yes!

Identify systemic barriers to just outcomes


Build relationships across communities
Understand shared problems to develop shared goals
Use political momentum to create opportunities
Increase capacity through experiential learning

The Problem
Department of Toxic Substances Control

Conflicting and unclear agency mission


Lack of strong and consistent agency leadership
Industry capture
No governing board or other systems of accountability
and transparency
Unchecked agency discretion; no standardized criteria

Developing a Shared Vision


Nominate representatives from impacted communities

across the state


Relationship building
Visioning workshops
Recognizing shared concerns
Developing shared solutions

Identify Opportunities

Legislation
Oversight hearings
Meet with DTSC leadership
Senate Confirmation process
Media

Experiential Learning

What Next?

Grow to represent more areas of the State


Engage in DTSC policy development and implementation
Pass legislation
Develop the criteria upon which to assess new director
All communities engage in coordinated local advocacy
efforts

Questions?