At the end of the first day and the student summit we were privileged to see another speaker by the name of Majora Carter. Her speech was phenomenal and very inspirational as well. She bought up a lot of good points that dealt not only with the environment but also environmental justice and she included the economy as well which is all important when it comes to sustainability.
Majora Carter is from the Hunts Point in the South Bronx. Where she lives, it is filled with incinerators and factories and the environment is not clean in any way. People that live there had the notion that they could not do anything. A lot of the people from Hunts Point suffered from poverty. The graduation rate was very low and a lot of people went to jail for making bad decisions. All these social factors had an affect on the sustainable aspect of her city. Slowly but surely, the sickness rate increased. More and more people began to have asthma and other diseases. People had other more important things to worry about than to find out or notice the correlation between the society and the environment. People did not realize that because they were poor they were the ones being affected by all this pollution. The environmentalist movement is in the hands of the elitist and yet all the decisions they are making are affecting the "second class citizens" not them.
There was a park in her city that was excessively dirty filled with trash just a place that one cared about. Majora Carter got people from her community to help her with the park. She realized that people in her community needed to be informed because they simply did not know and were not aware of everything happening to them. She gave them incentives which motivated them even more. This is where the economy comes into place. No one is going to hire an ex-convict which is why most likely after coming out of jail they go right back in because they do not know anything else. Majora gave them hope and oppurtunity. People in her community were able to have jobs and feel like valuable assets to their community. They fixed up the park and Majora Carter even got married in that park.
She has continued to find ways to help everyone in her community and make her community a better place to live and to breathe! She planted an urban garden on her roof which is something she wants to implement all around her community. For her, it is about making jobs, something so scarce in this point in time, in order to motivate people to help with the environment as well.