The Center for Health, Environment & Justice is the nation’s leading resource for grassroots environmental activism. We train community leaders across the country who are working on a wide range of environmental issues impacting their communities. Moms and dads, farmers and inner-city residents, professionals and blue-collar workers who face an environmental health threat—all are welcome to call our offices. At CHEJ, we believe that everyone has the right to a clean and healthy environment.
People who discover environmental contamination in their neighborhoods are often given a mere month or two to articulate their concerns and organize their communities. Many must create, often out of nothing, a well-organized volunteer group to take on the polluter. CHEJ’s Leadership Training Academy helps communities identify volunteer leaders, form organizations and networks, develop basic skills, and expand their community base.
These groups must also respond to “experts” who have prepared intricate technical plans for well-financed government agencies and corporations. CHEJ’s Science and Technical Assistance Program translates the technical aspects of chemical exposures into language that is easy to understand and can be used to win.
In 2015, CHEJ’s staff helped more than 700 leaders from 40 states build confidence and power by providing them with the strategies, network, policy analysis and scientific perspective. The groups fought for environmental justice around issues from leaking landfills and polluted drinking water to incinerators and hazardous waste sites.
Tools to Help You Win
For most of the thousands of groups CHEJ has helped over the years, our collaboration began with a phone call to our office. A nearby landfill smells bad and I think it’s making our kids sick. My neighbors and I want to stop a local factory from dumping its wastewater, but we don’t know how to start. We’ve got a small group working against fracking—how can we explain how dangerous it is?
The calls come because CHEJ has the tools to help local residents win. Organizing isn’t easy. There are no magic facts. There are no perfect heroes to give perfect speeches that will convince the polluters to stop polluting. But with dogged determination of people working together—knowledgable and organized—neighbors can protect their health and the health of their neighbors and help build strong communities where people can live, work, learn, play and pray.
CHEJ can provide your community with tools and support to fight against toxic threats, whether you are starting a new initiative from scratch with volunteers or have been working already for years. Our support is broadly structured in four categories:
Read more about how these programs work and let us know how we can work with you.