Take a Stand: Statement on Police Brutality and Environmental Racism

June 3, 2020 by Aiko Schaefer

We are a network that comes together to share our work, ideas and vision for a future that is clean, thriving, inclusive and just. We cannot, however, reach our shared vision, I believe, without standing up for justice for Black people, because their unjust treatment is an environmental justice issue. We must condemn the racists acts that led to the murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor and so many more. 

Police brutality and the call for “dominance” over others are the same forces that propel dominance and destruction of our planet; the same forces that use power and privilege to murder black people without consequence are the same that profit from the burning of rainforests, pouring of toxic chemicals into our air, and the looting of our natural resources without consequence. We cannot stop the destruction of Mother Nature if we allow oppression and violence.  

Just as we would vehemently and actively advocate for the planet so shall we say Black Lives Matter. As we would actively engage in and organize a march or protest, so shall we passionately protect the right to peacefully assemble without threat of military force and harm.

It is not the time to be silent, doing so is to be complicit with these acts of violence and also allows for the underlying forms of institutional racism and white supremecy to continue its oppress and harm Black people, and a corrosive impact on our country.

I ask each of your organizations, if you have not done so already, to issue a public statement this week to your members and supporters, then also take a public action to live out that statement -- an action directed and requested by Black leaders and organizations.

Let us, together drown out the voices of division and racism, with one, united voice for justice, equity and accountability.

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