A vision for justice
Oregon Environmental Council envisions a future in which every Oregonian has access to the healthy air, water, climate and community we need to thrive.
To achieve this vision, we strive for equitable environmental policies and practices that give every Oregonian a fair shot at:
- acting on their environmental values
- being a part of decisions that affect them, and
- living in healthy environments.
To create fair and equitable strategies, we must first recognize that some Oregonians experience greater environmental hazards and have access to fewer environmental benefits than others. Some of us experience:
- higher concentrations of air and water pollution,
- have less access to green spaces and transportation options,
- are exposed to more toxics in the food we eat and products we use,
- live in neighborhoods without safe housing and safe options to walk and bike, and
- have less opportunity to weigh in on decisions that affect us the most.
Equitable environmental strategies offer more support, resources and capacity to communities that carry a bigger burden of environmental problems. Striving for equitable environmental strategy in Oregon also requires a commitment to justice.
Oregon Environmental Council must recognize the historic, systemic and institutional racism that has contributed to people of color experiencing more burdens, less services and greater economic stress. Even as racial diversity grows in every one of Oregon’s 36 counties, and even though the 2017 state legislature included more people of color than ever before, people of color remain under-represented in decision-making and in positions of power. An anti-immigration movement in the state threatens to advance ballot measures that are hostile to immigrants, creating even greater barriers to participating in our communities.
In order to achieve our vision, Oregon Environmental Council must value justice and work towards dismantling racism and defeating racist social and economic policies that create barriers to meaningful participation from people of color.
See more about the way our staff and advisors think about equity, inclusion, diversity and justice
OEC has set goals, and strategies for accountability, to measure our progress towards justice
See resources our staff are using to learn about equity and environmental justice