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Climate Activism is Social Justice

Mississauga Climate Action

Reflective of the cultural and ethnic mosaic of our city, Mississauga Climate Action is home to a colourful variety of backgrounds and perspectives.

And so, with understanding of the invaluability of diversity, and the disparate treatment of those of colour clearer than ever; amidst pride month, and the killings of

George Floyd,

Breonna Taylor,

Dominique Rem’Mie Fells,

Tony Mcdade,

and countless others;

we at MCA mark our intolerance of the mistreatment of black, queer, and especially black transgender bodies and lives.

Environmental consciousness is about bringing greater awareness to the inter-connectivity and dependence of our planet. We all benefit greatly from both the contributions and impoverishment of black, brown and LGBTQ2IA+ lives, felt in the clothes we wear, the entertainment we enjoy, the food we eat, the air we breathe. Yet, theirs continue to be the most neglected and attacked, whether that be at the hands of endlessly-hungry corporations and policy and lawmakers, or our own willful ignorance.

As climate activists, we also understand that like zero-waste living, being an ally, anti-racist, and anti-sexist is a process of highly necessary unlearning, re-education and action. We at MCA want to move further along this path of interweaving roads with more pronounced force, more consciously incorporating Black, Indigenous, and POC realities and perspectives into our activities and efforts as we grow and progress. To start, here are some resources selected to help those wanting to educate themselves on the intersection of environmental activism and social justice

  1. Grist – Your race can determine your ZIP Code, your Zip Code determines your life expectancy. Environmental Justice explained:

2. VICE – “…it makes no sense to fight for aggressive climate action that would protect Black communities from natural disasters and air pollution while staying silent about the 1,098 people killed last year by police — a fate three times as likely for Black Americans than white. … ‘These movements are careening towards the same vision of the future’”:

3. The New York Times – “Here’s what three prominent environmental defenders had to say in interviews about how the climate movement can be anti-racist: ;…it’s not choosing this or that. Or this, then that. It’s this and that.’”

4. PPG Review – Family rejection to homelessness. Climate displacement to the violent queerphobia of the refugee experience. All too often excluded from the conversation about climate change is the unique experience of LGBTQIA2S+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual, 2 Spirit+) oppression:

5. The Homeless Hub – Queer people make up only 8% of Canada’s population, but 40% of it’s homeless youth. Neglectful gaps in research suggest rates of homelessness may be higher:

6. Grist – Queer people of colour pushed to the margins where climate chaos lives:

7. The New York Times – “Black transgender people not only bear a disproportionate burden of police violence but also face high rates of violence and harassment on the street. The American Medical Association said last fall that killings of transgender women of color in the United States amounted to an epidemic.”:

Environmental preservation is queer liberation, black freedom is climate justice.

Take the hand of the person beside you, feel how you are one in the same, and hear their pain.

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