Sponsored by Chair Raul M. Grijalva (D-AZ) and Congressman Donald A. McEachin (D-VA), the Environmental Justice for All Act is an essential federal legislative effort to remedy the long history of environmental racism and injustice in the United States. The bill establishes several environmental justice requirements, advisory bodies, and programs to address the disproportionate adverse human health or environmental effects of federal laws or programs on communities of color, low-income communities, or tribal and indigenous communities.
The bill was drafted through a years-long inclusive, transparent, and community-led process based on public input. Members of Congress in support of the bill went on a Community Input Tour of several environmental justice communities to hear from their leaders to better address injustices in the bill. At each stop of the tour, they facilitated a public input forum to obtain formal feedback on the Environmental Justice for All Act.
Environmental justice groups and advocates are hoping that the bill will pass this legislative session. Although there is “virtually no chance” the act will be enacted this year, a floor vote in the House would carry enormous symbolic weight.
Our Climate strongly supports the Environmental Justice for All Act’s central components which are essential steps in remedying a long legacy of harm and ensuring the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people. Our youth leaders will work with other environmental justice groups, making it clear that we are not going anywhere, and our allies on Capitol Hill will not stay quiet. We deserve to have a vote!
In the meantime, contact your elected officials and express your support of the bill! If we continue this momentum, the bill would strengthen environmental regulation, improve health equity, and support local frontline organizations focused on the health of their communities.