Life is nuts, where has the time gone? We’re almost to the end finallyyyyyy. It did come quicker than expected but we’re in the home stretch now. This week’s presentation was another great topic, thinking about how environmental justice works. I was very interested in this concept as it’s easy to overlook if it’s not directly effecting you in your face but it kinda always is in a way, ya know? We all have to eat so when thinking about environmental food justice from that lens, food access and security should be important to everyone and this group definitely made me thinking about how we utilize community gardens as a way to tackle the food access problem. I thought it was extra special that they had a tool to hold us accountable for the way that we approach environmental justice advocacy. Here’s my response to the Environmental Justice Pact:
Name: Annetta J.
Date of Interview: 4/7/18
Time of Interview: 8:00pm (yes, I’m a lame 24 year old so what)
Family Back Ground: Detroit native, born and raised to a two parent working-class household as the only child. I’m a first generation college and now graduate student in my immediate family.
Employment: Currently I work part-time as a recruiter for a Psychology Lab regarding adolescent interpersonal relationships. I also work as an intern at the State Appellate Defender Office where I work with the Reentry Project helping to create reintegration plans for returning citizens.
Education: I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree from Umich in 2016 with double concentrations in Psychology and Political Science. I’m currently a graduate student in Umich’s School of Social Work with a concentration in Social Policy and Evaluation, paying special attention to Community and Social Systems.
Hobbies: I enjoy reading, watching competitive cooking shows, listening to a mixture of HipHop and R&B, blogging, people watching, netflixing, and doing community service. Lately I’ve also found a love for listening to podcasts centered around the Black Woman.
How often do you reflect on food access and environmental justice? Sometimes.
What act of advocacy, education and or social justice, can you employ to increase food and environmental justice; while reducing health disparities?
An environmental issue that has been bothering me is the recent news that Gov. Snyder approved Nestle to extract more amounts of water from the state. They are asking to pump 576,000 gallons of water each day from the White Pine Springs Well in the Great Lakes. Although there was huge public outcry and opposition, the company’s plan “met all legal standards” and was allowed to proceed. Meanwhile, after more than four years the city of Flint have been battling high levels of lead and other hazardous material in their water. They were told that their water supply “had been restored” and the disbursement of free bottle water to families would be discontinued very soon.
I have so many questions…have all of those pipes been restored too? What are the levels now? What are the retroactive plans for all he children and families effected? What financial reparations or resources are being given to the citizens? Is water really a commodity or a human right? Why isn’t anyone holding Snyder accountable for genocide? What are the legal standards around Nestle foreshadowing a hostile takeover of our state’s water source? My commitment to this environmental justice issue is two-fold, my first being to boycott Nestle and all it’s corresponding products and services. After looking at the list of things they own and are involved with it made me even more outraged and disgusted. I will also commit myself to researching about the questions from above, what allows this to happen? How do we stop this gentrification and displacement that happens as a result of big companies bullying minority spaces?
Are you willing to take this action? I am more than willing to take this action as well as include others in this work toward justice. I will began boycotting today until further noticed.
Impact you aspire to have: I just hope to gain clarity and make sure that the citizens’ voice is centered more when interacting with large corporations working in the community.