Environmental Justice Coordinating CouncilEJCC
To eradicate environmental and economic injustices in north Minneapolis and beyond.
The EJCC visualizes, creates and implements ecological, economic, and strategic investments to end environmental racism.
In 2017, Public Policy Project organized and created the Environmental Justice Coordinating Council (EJCC), composed entirely of African American residents and agents of change in North Minneapolis. With a grant, through Pillsbury United Communities, funded by the McKnight Foundation to develop an Environmental Justice Assessment and Action Plan for North Minneapolis. The EJCC meets monthly to develop and coordinate planning to reduce the environmental justice overburden in our community and increase both environmental and population health.
When we first asked African Americans in our community about how they see “environmental issues” in relation to the everyday racial and economic justice issues they focus on – people did not see a clear connection. After a series of one to one conversations and collective dialogues, people came to see that “all issues are environmental justice issues”.
The work of EJCC:
- Functions with the goal of sustainable and measurable improvement in the combined environmental and population health of North Minneapolis;
- Gathers and reviews existing data on environmental and population health in North Minneapolis;
- Develops a forward-looking analysis of this data, suggesting how this analysis will be applied to support increasing returns to environmental and population health;
- Produce a preliminary environmental justice action framework;
- incorporate an assessment of ecological literacy and engagement in the outdoors of North Minneapolis residents;
- Design and implement a campaign to increase outdoor environmental engagement and to increase ecological literacy;
- Take concrete, measurable action to address the priorities of the environmental justice action framework. This might include engaging North Minneapolis residents in air, soil and water quality monitoring and remediation, analyzing brownfields and developing plans to generate an environmentally sound community development strategy to improve the quality of life.
- Connect to the broader network of mainstream environmental organizations and partner to advance career opportunities and both Board and staff leadership roles for American Indian people and people of color in all environmental fields.
In addition, the EJCC convened quarterly dialogues with mainstream environmental organizations to partner around developing a career pathway strategy for more American Indians and people of color to connect to employment opportunities in environmental fields and advance into leadership roles in the field.