Congressman McEachin (D-VA) is drafting a bill entitled the Forest Climate Workforce Act of 2021. This Act is intended to create equity and jobs as it relates to tree cover, forests and climate change in the US. Read our concerns below, and sign for your organization!
Forest Climate Workforce Act
We were alerted about a bill Congressman McEachin (D-VA) is drafting entitled the Forest Climate Workforce Act of 2021. This Act is intended to create equity and jobs as it relates to tree cover, forests and climate change in the US.
The parts of the Act related to establishing tree cover, parks and natural areas in urban, low-income communities of color seem meaningful and on target. However, in its current form, the Act fails to acknowledge and address inequities in forest cover loss in rural communities of the South. Even worse, it wrongfully characterizes the forest industry as a part of the solution. This is in direct contradiction to the forest components of the Southern Communities for a Green New Deal platform.
Dogwood Alliance and New Alpha CDC have drafted these general comments on the Act and would like to send it to Congressman McEachin's office early next week [week of Mar 1]. We are hoping to get other groups in our network signed on by COB this Friday, if possible as we are working to schedule a meeting with his staff to discuss these issues and offer solutions.
Please let us know if your organization can sign on. If you need anything added or edited in order to do so, please let us know that as well.
We believe there is ample opportunity to revise this Act to align with the Southern Communities for a Green New Deal platform on these issues. If we can get this Act in a good place, we would have something meaningful to work for in Congress.
Danna Smith and Rev. Leo Woodberry