FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: APRIL 25, 2023
CONTACT: Maggie Grundy, Communications and Graphics Coordinator, email@example.com
(NEW ORLEANS, LA) —
On Friday, April 21, President Biden signed a new Executive Order, Revitalizing Our Nation’s Commitment to Environmental Justice for All. This Executive Order aims to assist and empower communities facing disproportionate harms due to environmental racism.
By establishing the White House Office on Environmental Justice, there will now be an entity responsible for overseeing the federal government’s role in promoting access to clean air and water, with a commitment to better protecting communities that have for too long suffered disproportionate and adverse environmental and health impacts due to the impacts of pollution and climate change.
At VAYLA, we know the impacts of environmental racism and climate change first–hand. Environmental Justice is at the core of our mission embodied through our Earth Rising program, which aims to provide environmental justice education to underserved communities, including groups with limited English proficiency.
VAYLA’s Executive Director, Jacqueline Thanh, MSW was present for the announcement and signing of this historic Executive Order and shared the following:
“It was an honor to be a part of American history alongside so many tireless community organizers and Environmental Justice leaders to witness President Biden sign this executive order. I wish everyone the best as we continue to advocate for improving the lives of communities hit hardest by toxic pollution and climate change.”
In addition, the Executive Order will:
- Direct agencies to develop concrete methods to address and prevent disproportionate and adverse environmental and health impacts on communities, including requiring agencies to notify communities in the event that toxic substances are released from a federal facility, which includes holding a public meeting to inform communities of potential health risks and precautions.
- Deepen commitment to vulnerable communities — which means taking steps to identify significant barriers for these voices in federal decision making and developing concrete pathways for community involvement.
- Utilize the latest science, data, and research in order to address gaps in research and advance the analysis of cumulative impacts and making this information publicly accessible.
As we continue supporting the next generation of community leaders of color, we look forward to exploring how this Executive Order and new Environmental Justice office can help expand our ability as an organization to advance environmental justice work in New Orleans and beyond!
VAYLA incubates AAPI leaders for a more just tomorrow. VAYLA exists as an embodiment and commitment to activating tomorrow’s AAPI leaders in New Orleans and beyond. We engender leadership to address social inequities facing our community while anchored in an anti-racist, Queer, Feminist lens. At the forefront of these issues we focus on environmental justice, reproductive justice, and civic engagement initiatives.