A new initiative to end environmental racism

“We must move towards a time when, instead of systematically locating polluting industries in low-income communities, corporations and governments listen to communities and work together to ensure that projects benefit their well-being.”

                                                                – Naolo Charles, Director, Black Environmental Initiative

Across Canada, communities of colour are more likely to experience the health impacts of toxic dumps, polluting industries, tainted water, and climate change. This environmental racism is the direct result of Canada’s historic and ongoing colonization.

It is time to end this toxic legacy. Communities across the country are standing up for their rights to health and well-being.

And there are leaders working on solutions, like the founders of two new MakeWay shared platform projects. Dr. Ingrid Waldron, who leads the Environmental Noxiousness, Racial Inequities & Community Health Project (The ENRICH Project) which uses a community-based research approach to addressing environmental racism. And Naolo Charles, who is launching the Black Environmental Initiative to support more Black representation and leadership in the environmental sector.

Together with Dr. Waldron and Naolo, we are co-creating a new initiative to address environmental racism in Canada. Over the coming months, we will:

  • Convene a National Network to identify areas for collaboration, and action amongst groups working to end Environmental Racism;
  • Support Dr. Waldron and Naolo’s unique projects on MakeWay’s shared platform
  • Engage in policy dialogue to encourage the passage of Bill C-230 to redress environmental racism
  • Connect allies and raise awareness of environmental racism across the country
  • Launch an Environmental Racism Fund to provide strategic grantmaking to time-sensitive community-led initiatives

Now, we need your help to raise $200,000. Funds will provide direct support for the ENRICH Project, BE Initiative, and the development of this work.

Please consider a donation today and support equal rights to a healthy environment in Canada.

P.S. This story of racism and the environment in Canada is beautifully told in There’s Something in the Water, a documentary Waldron co-produced with Nova Scotia actor and director Elliot Page.

For more information contact:

Leanne Burton, Director of Partnership Development
leanne.burton@makeway.org