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Environmental Injustice Among African Americans Report

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Updated: Aug 2nd, 2022

The issue of environmental injustice among communities of color has become starker since the COVID-19 pandemic began. Cities like Detroit, composed of 71 % Blacks, have been disproportionately affected by environmental risks compared to White communities. These environmental injustices have sequentially increased COVID-related deaths of Black people in the area.

Research

My first source will be a news article published by the Guardian. This journalistic piece profoundly describes the environmental injustices experienced by people of color living in Detroit (Costley). This article is beneficial because it offers specificity regarding the target population and environmental risks affecting this community. Challenges such as lead poisoning, air pollution, and water shutoffs are described in relation to health and increased risk of death from coronavirus. The article also offers a clear correlation between pollution, environmental racism, and coronavirus-related deaths (Costley). The article provides significant statistical data concerning environmental injustices and documents how racial and economic inequalities adversely affect the lives of African Americans.

The other source is an NGO article that discusses the disproportionate deaths of Black people from coronavirus due to environmental racism and overrepresentation of African Americans in frontline workforces (Berkovitz). The author illustrates how the majority of Blacks have been allocated jobs that are impossible to complete from home or have been assigned positions that expose them to several health risk factors. This article is relevant to my research as it explicates how the concentration of pollution among black communities impacts their health and overall well-being. The author contrasts Black and White neighborhoods and highlights glaring differences that suggest a prevalence of racial injustice in the United States.

The third source elucidates the differential impacts of COVID-19 on communities of color. It is a scholarly source that documents how environmental justice is interlinked with discrepancies in coronavirus outcomes (Wilson). Research findings denote that coronavirus has disproportionately taken the lives of African Americans, a phenomenon that has been partly perpetuated by environmental injustice (Wilson). The authors describe why communities of color are at a disadvantage in terms of health and economy owing to their geographical location, race, and employment standards (Wilson). This source is pertinent to my research as it adequately describes the impacts of environmental injustice on social determinants of health for Black people. It also provides a detailed description of the background of the problem and offers valuable insight into the formulation of curative interventions (Wilson).

Inspiration

To address issues of environmental injustice, I will create a media object, a zine that highlights the racial inequalities experienced by people of color. I reckon that a zine will be more appealing to the communities of color as it would directly address their needs in the most convenient way. I will include relevant statistical data on recent environmental and social research. Most importantly, I plan to compare environmental injustices among Black communities to those of White populations. This comparison data will be instrumental in forming the basis of my argument. I also intend to incorporate real-life examples of how environmental racism has adversely affected the health and economic status of African Americans. Including the life experiences of the target population will back up facts and add value to my writing. The zine will be based on facts and evidence; thus, this media object will increase the credibility of my research. A zine will help sculpt my creativity. This is because I will work with different sources of information to create a single article that makes a compelling case. This type of media object also requires one to employ creativity in order to express objectivity and boldness in writing.

Works Cited

Berkovitz, Casey. “Environmental Racism Has Left Black Communities Especially Vulnerable to COVID-19.” The Century Foundation, Web.

Costley, Drew. “The Blackest City in the US Is Facing an Environmental Justice Nightmare.” The Guardian, The Guardian, Web.

Wilson, Sacoby M. “Roundtable on the Pandemics of Racism, Environmental Injustice, and COVID-19 in America.” Environmental Justice, vol. 13, no. 3, 2020, pp. 56–64.

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