About the Task Force
Environmental justice is equal protection from environmental and health hazards, and meaningful public participation in decisions that affect the environment in which people live, work, learn, practice spirituality and play. "Environmental justice communities" include minority and low-income communities, tribal communities, and other communities traditionally underrepresented in public processes.
When state agencies make decisions that affect our environment it is critical that low-income and minority populations are not disproportionately affected. The Environmental Justice Task Force (EJTF) was created by the Legislature to help protect Oregonians from disproportionate environmental impacts on minority and low-income populations. The EJTF encourages state agencies to give all people knowledge and access to improve decisions that affect environment and the health of all Oregonians.
The Task Force is charged with the mission to:
- Advise the Governor on environmental justice issues;
- Advise natural resource agencies on environmental justice issues, including community concerns and public participation processes;
- Identify, in cooperation with natural resource agencies, minority and low-income communities that may be affected by environmental decisions made by the agencies;
- Meet with environmental justice communities and make recommendations to the Governor regarding concerns raised by these communities; and
- Define environmental justice issues in the state.
In 2016 the Oregon EJTF published the best practices handbook.