Advocating for Environmental Justice -- Saturday, Oct. 21, 2-5 p.m.

When we have a positive connection to nature, we connect with what it means to be alive and with what it means to be human. This connection helps us respect nature and see the value of clean water and clean air for ourselves and our families. Unfortunately, many of us take it for granted. If you connected with these memories, this Saturday in Annapolis it is your turn to become an advocate.

/By Claire Miller/ Think back to a time from childhood. A time when you remember playing outside in a backyard full of grass or in a river or stream or on a sandy beach. A time when you remember tasting the freshness of a tomato or the sweetness of a watermelon. A time when you enjoyed the outdoors and the fresh air of summer. Being connected to nature is important. It’s important to feeling alive and present. When we have a positive connection to nature, we connect with what it means to be alive and with what it means to be human. This connection helps us respect nature and see the value of clean water and clean air for ourselves and our families. Unfortunately, many of us take it for granted. If you connected with these memories, it is your turn to become an advocate.

Yes, there are professional organizations that are on the frontlines. There are also communities who are fighting for their right to have a clean environment for themselves and their neighbors. But more importantly, these advocates and activists need you, the citizens of Maryland, to stand with them and advocate for clean water and clean air and a connection to the land that supports the food we eat. Without our citizen voices getting involved now, we won’t have an environment that is clean or safe enough to enjoy today and to pass on to our children and grandchildren.

Now is your time to jump in and get educated. You can get up to speed in one afternoon. Attend the Environmental Action Response Town Hall (EARTH) on Saturday, October 21st in the Key School Activity Building in Annapolis from 2-5pm.  If you are going to be an advocate you need to be informed but you also need to know the stakeholders. Who is focused on the environment in our state government? Who is informed about environmental priorities? Who is fighting for environmental justice in their community?   

  • Want to know about our state legislator’s environmental priorities and find out where they are getting their information? It’s happening at EARTH.
    • State Delegate Marvin Holmes from Prince George’s County
    • State Delegate Andrew Cassilly from Harford and Cecil County
    • State Delegate Chris West from Baltimore County
    • State Delegate Anne Healey from Prince George’s County
    • Want to learn about environmental justice and what advocates are doing about clean water, clean air and food justice in their communities?  It’s happening at EARTH.
      • Donnie Williams – We Are Cove Point
      • Ramon Palencia-Calvo – CHISPA – Air Quality
      • Emmalee Aman – Food Justice
      • Want to know what’s going on at a state and federal level?  It’s happening at EARTH.
        • Ben Grumbles, Director of the Environment speaks about Governor Hogan’s environmental priorities.
        • Attorney General Brian Frosh is speaking about the environmental legal actions he’s pursuing on behalf of Maryland.
        • Senator Ben Cardin will talk about Maryland leadership on the environment at a federal level
        • Want to get to know professional advocates from Maryland’s environmental organizations?  It’s happening at EARTH.
          • Karla Raettig – League of Conservation Voters
          • Elaine Lutz – Chesapeake Bay Foundation
          • Rebecca Rehr – Maryland Environmental Health Network
          • Claire Jordan – Trash Free Maryland

RSVP to get free tickets and plan to sign up for specific environmental actions after the town hall. Several groups will be on hand to sign-up volunteers for advocacy training and environmental actions in your community. Seema Kakade from the Environmental Law Clinic at UMD will be available with a team of law students to offer legal support for environmental justice cases. See the whole program schedule here.


Claire Miller is an activist with Take Action Anne Arundel County, the Progressive Maryland county chapter.