For Immediate release – October 20, 2020
Patrick Nevada, firstname.lastname@example.org, 646.866.9065
NYC Elected Officials, Advocates Unveil New 100,000 Jobs Plan for Communities Hit Hard by COVID-19 and Climate Change
NEW YORK – Advocates, community organizers, and elected officials participated in an online press conference today to unveil a plan to create 100,000 climate jobs in NYC for those hit hardest by Covid-19 and Climate Change. You can view the press conference here.
The plan was revealed in a new report, An Equitable Recovery for NYC: Creating 100,000 Climate Jobs for Frontline Communities of Color, written by the Climate Works for All coalition, a unique coalition of environmental justice organizations, labor unions, environmental, faith and community groups.
“Across our city, the highest rates of job loss and death from COVID-19 are in low-income communities and communities of color. These are the same communities living on the frontlines of climate change. The Climate and Community Stimulus Platform tackles the need for a plan to put 100,000 people back to work with good union jobs while meeting New York City’s climate goals. We have a limited time to not only rebuild our economy but build it back better.” Said Maritza Silva- Farrell, Executive Director at ALIGN
This report, identifies infrastructure projects that, if enacted, will create 100,000 good union jobs, move New York City toward our 2050 climate goals, and drive investment towards low income, Black and brown environmental justice communities in New York City.
“We must face climate change head on through renewable energy projects and a true just transition. While doing this we need to prioritize Black and Brown communities that have felt both the health and economic impacts of Climate Change and COVID-19 disproportionately. 250,000 people die prematurely because of air pollution every year. We know that exposure to pollution, and pollution-related health conditions like asthma, make people more susceptible to Covid-19. Almost 33,000 people have died from the coronavirus in New York so far. We need to be able to definitively say once and for all that climate change is a public health crisis and that systemic racism is as well. Nurses know that a green economy that works for all of us is critical to the future of our planet and a just society,” Said Pat Kane, RNl Executive Director, New York State Nurses Association
“New York City needs a stimulus package that prioritizes our sustainable future and create good, lasting jobs,” said Council Member Costa Constantinides, Chair of the Committee on Environmental Protection. “I am proud to support Climate Works for All’s Climate and Community Stimulus Platform, which will provide real economic and environmental justice for Black and Brown communities.”
“I am so proud to support ALIGN’s Climate and Community Stimulus Platform, which lays a roadmap for fighting climate change and creating thousands of stable, well paying jobs for New Yorkers. It’s imperative that we invest in wind, solar, and other renewable energy sources while closing and divesting from harmful power plants and pipelines that only harm the health of the city’s most vulnerable communities. I’ve fought for legislation and programs at the City level to fight climate change, but to truly make this future possible, we need the state to step up and make the richest New Yorkers pay their fair share,” said Councilwoman Carlina Rivera.
“The New York City Climate and Community Stimulus Platform tackles two of the most urgent issues facing our city and nation today: the state of our environment and economic recovery from the COVID pandemic,” said Council Member Antonio Reynoso. “The Platform proposes actionable ways in which we can transition to a green economy. This means putting folks — especially those who have historically been marginalized — to work in sectors that prioritize the long term sustainability of our planet. I commend Climate Works for All on their commitment to environmental and social justice.”
“I am proud to support the Climate Works for All platform. Now is the time for us to invest in a comprehensive climate resiliency plan that will create thousands of good paying jobs all while we transition away from fossil fuels to 100% renewable clean power that is cheaper and more sustainable in the long run. As chair of the Council’s Waterfront and Resiliency committee our focus has been to hold long standing stakeholders accountable for the failing status quo as well as keep conversations like these at the forefront so it gets the much needed attention and action it deserves,” said New York City Council Member Justin Brannan
The highest rates of job loss and Covid-19 cases have been in low income and communities of color. They are also the same communities who are hit hardest by climate change. Participants in the forum identified job creation in renewable energy and energy efficiency systems, housing, clean transportation, local manufacturing, public land development, waste, and workforce development.
“Right now more than in recent decades New York City needs new good-paying jobs,” said Council Member Ben Kallos. “New York City also needs to improve and add to its infrastructure. What better way to do both of these and help the environment than by allocating funds to improve our City especially in communities that have been neglected for a long time. 100,000 new jobs would go a long way in helping New York City come back financially all while doing the right thing for the environment.”
“Amidst a global pandemic, it was the under-served communities who were disproportionately impacted by the Virus. We need a recovery plan that will create green jobs and employ people from the most impacted areas of the City. Additionally, we need to ensure that residents in all communities are receiving investments for their local parks and green spaces, ” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez, Chairman of the Transportation Committee. “Many New Yorkers in Northern Manhattan and the Bronx suffer from asthma at significantly higher rates than other neighborhoods. The George Washington Bridge and the Cross-Bronx Expressway produce enormous amounts of car emissions leading to higher rates of asthma in these areas. I look forward to working alongside the Climate Works for all Coalition to ensure we continue fighting environmental racism while helping employ low-income communities with green jobs.”
“Vastly reducing our economy’s reliance on fossil fuels, reducing building emissions, improving our public transit, and constructing a more resilient city will create tens of thousands of good, green jobs in NYC. This is a once in a generation opportunity, not just to preserve a healthy planet for future generations, but to build a far more equitable economy,” said Council Member Brad Lander.
“The Climate Works for All report highlights the importance of investing in a green recovery that puts New Yorkers back to work quickly, takes on climate change, and creates good union jobs and careers. Investing in policies that accomplish all three of those goals at the same time is the smart approach to economic recovery,” said Jeff Vockrodt, Executive Director, Climate Jobs NY.
“Climate Justice and a just transition is at the heart of any frontline- led Just Recovery decision-making. An Equitable Recovery for NYC report outlines a necessary path that centers frontline community leadership, decision-making, and solutions. We cannot address the legacy of extraction and discriminatory siting of environmental burdens in frontline climate vulnerable communities without investing in climate jobs and renewable energy infrastructure.” Said Elizabeth Yeampierre, Executive Director of UPROSE
“As NYC’s first minority & women benefit corporation focused on energy equity, we are hopeful to see a future where collaboration and commitment to building a sustainable future, development of intergenerational wealth for New Yorkers, opportunities for more minority & women small businesses to fight against climate disaster, and preserving housing for those who need it most. Solutions from the community, by the community are the best pathway forward for a carbon-free future and it should be the only solution prioritized for our people, our homes, and our health,” said Daphany Rose Sanchez, Executive Director, Kinetic Communities.
“The creation of good, green jobs is NYC’s future. This Report brings good, union jobs to our Black and brown communities most in need, while helping NYC confront the rapidly growing climate crisis. The Stimulus Platform targets money to NYCHA residents who are much in need of improved housing, while reducing NYCHA’s GHG emissions, lowering heating costs, and setting the stage for completely transitioning NYCHA developments to clean energy alternatives,” said Jon Forrster of the DC 37 Climate Justice Committee.
“An Equitable Recovery for NYC gives youth a reason for hope. By redefining the city’s economy in a green image, creating apprenticeships for young workers, and remedying systemic inequality, this plan brings along needed change,” said Scott Siegel, Co-Policy Director, TREEage.
“The Covid-19 crisis should be a clarifying moment for New York City as we consider our future. The pre-Covid city was not healthy or secure for many Black and brown New Yorkers, with high energy burdens and unhealthy homes plaguing many people’s living situations. And now, the disparity in lost jobs and the negative health impacts caused by the pandemic and exacerbated by the scourge of environmental racism are disproportionately falling on these same communities, with the specter of climate change looming. The Climate Works for All Coalition’s call for “An Equitable Recovery for NYC” provides real, implementable opportunities for how we can build a resilient future now. This report covers numerous areas for where to start our road to an equitable recovery, including a massive investment in energy efficiency for all buildings where low-income New Yorkers live – including small 1-4 family residential – which too often get left out of policymaker’s climate action plans. We call on New York City’s politicians to recognize that massive change is needed – to help us get through the current and future crises we face,” Rebekah Morris, Senior Program Manager, Pratt Center for Community Development
“NYC needs to lead on a just recovery that rebuilds our City’s economy with the future climate crises in mind. We need new infrastructure, renewable energy, safer and healthier housing and transportation. All this can be accomplished with Climate Works 4 All’s recovery platform. With 100,000+ new jobs, this recovery platform can transform our families, our communities, and our city. These jobs need to be union jobs, healthy jobs, contributing to a rebuilt city that is livable and just,” said Nancy Romer, Administrative Team, Peoples Climate Movement-NY.
Formed in 2014, Climate Works for All is comprised of environmental justice advocates, community organizations, labor unions and faith-based organizations with the goal of addressing climate change and income inequality.