Building Collective Power as Environmental Justice Messengers
What is Environmental Justice? Why is it important to center the voices and experiences of BIPOC-Frontline communities when advocating for climate solutions? What role do communications professionals play in telling the environmental justice story?
Our movement needs effective communicators who can convey environmental justice priorities in impactful ways that move people to shift their understanding of environmental and climate solutions toward a racial, economic, and environmental justice framework.
More than half of Americans (56%) say they hear about global warming in the media at least once a month, according to Yale Program on Climate Communication, “Climate Change in the American Mind: November 2019.” Now that climate change has established itself in mainstream media as a prevalent topic for discussion, how can we gain influence so that equitable and just climate solutions are prioritized in messaging regarding climate change, environmental justice, and climate justice?
Like any movement, building solidarity is a powerful way to create transformative change. Solidarity can look like people in a community organizing themselves to work toward social justice as a collective. In the case of trying to shift the climate change narrative so that it puts the voices and experiences of BIPOC-frontline communities front and center, solidarity starts with cultivating a community of storytellers and strategic communicators with a shared enthusiasm for environmental justice.
We're about identifying community-created policy and program models; why not also integrate this into our communication strategies? By coming together, we can learn from each other and grow our capacity to support, strategize and influence the movement.
“Connecting on EJ” is a national cohort for communications professionals in the environmental justice movement initiated by Just Solutions. Those who work in the areas of communications, digital media, and storytelling within the environmental justice movement will come together and meet virtually twice a quarter to:
- Connect with others doing communications and digital media work in EJ/CJ
- Highlight what they’re working on
- Share calls-to-action
- Amplify requests for support
- Discuss the overall climate justice narrative in this country and approaches to focus the conversation around BIPOC Frontline-centered solutions.
In addition to meeting virtually twice a quarter, the cohort can engage with our listserv on the latest EJ updates, opportunities, and research.