I’m writing … today not only as Chair of the Climate Action Alliance of the Valley, but also as a member of the Harrisonburg-Rockingham chapter of the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. At 6:00 pm on Sunday, September 16, 2018, these two interests will come together at the NAACP’s 15th annual Freedom Fund Banquet, when the Rev. Dr. Gerald Durley will speak on “Climate Change and Civil Rights”. The banquet, to be held at the James Madison University Festival Ballroom, offers the conservation community an unusual opportunity to meet and support colleagues in the climate change movement who are working for environmental justice.
Who suffers the most from record-breaking temperatures, floods, hurricanes, and droughts? Who gets sick from living near fossil fuel facilities? The sad truth is that it is always the under-privileged who suffer the brunt of fossil fuel pollution and climate-related disasters, making them all civil rights issues.
Rev. Dr. Durley, who speaks around the world, believes that climate change and environmental justice are moral imperatives as well as civil rights issues. He was one of 12 people of faith recognized by the White House in 2015 as “Champions of Change” for their efforts in protecting our environment and communities from climate change. You can watch one of his speeches, “Race, Faith and Climate Change: How Global Warming is a Civil Rights Issue,” at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgEO5GkBuQY
Tickets for the September 16 banquet are $40 per seat ($25 for students) and $300 for a table of 8. You may also purchase an endorsement in the 8×10 printed brochure.
I hope you will join us in hearing the call to action by an amazing speaker (and a very nice person.) It would be great to see you there—you won’t want to miss it!
Joni Grady, Chair, Climate Action Alliance of the Valley, June 2018