Next 100 Coalition Lauds California Effort to Improve Marginalized Communities’ Access to Public Lands
Measures Included in Proposition 68 Have Potential to Significantly Increase Access to Public Lands, Open Spaces
WASHINGTON, May 15, 2018 — The Next 100 Coalition, a group of 50 civil rights, environmental justice, conservation, and community organizations, heralded the work of Californians striving to improve access to public lands and open spaces. The Coalition, which advocates for diversity and inclusion in the management of public lands, issued the following statement on the day many Californians will receive their ballots, which includes a proposal to use bonds to repair and improve the state’s public parks and water systems, while also increasing access to public lands and open space for all, particularly “park-poor” neighborhoods and marginalized communities:
“The Coalition believes that measures included in Proposition 68 have the potential to significantly increase access to public lands and open spaces, particularly for marginalized communities. … In addition to the allocation of resources to maintain and create parks and open space, Proposition 68 will require public agencies that receive funds through the measure to implement a range of actions that foster a more equitable and inclusive approach to public lands management in California,” the Coalition said in its statement.
The Next 100 Coalition’s statement also follows its recently concluded national summit, which focused on strategies to establish a broad policy agenda for action at the state, local, and federal levels of government, and on building networks to elevate diverse voices in the management and conservation of public lands.
“Prop 68 will advance equity and health for all Californians. The research overwhelmingly shows that access to green spaces has multiple economic, social, environmental, and health benefits. And yet, low-income and communities of color disproportionately live in neighborhoods without access to parks and other green spaces,” said Dr. Jeffrey Reynoso, executive director of the Latino Coalition for Healthy California. “By passing this measure, we will increase access to green spaces that will improve the mental and physical health for Latinos, and all Californians. The Latino Coalition for a Healthy California stands in strong support of Proposition 68.”