Shared by Wendy Gutschow, with Southern California Environmental Health Sciences Center Community Outreach. Thank you, Wendy!
East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice (EYCEJ) is a member of the Moving Forward Network.
A big congratulations to East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice and mark! Lopez for being recognized in Los Angeles Streetsblog‘s annual Streetsie awards. EYCEJ was voted 2015 Advocacy Organization of the Year and mark! received recognition, along with Tamika Butler of the LACBC, and was voted to receive the 2015 Deborah Murphy Award for Excellence in Advocacy award.
LAStreetsblog wrote the following:
“East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice – EYCEJ has tirelessly advocated for environmental justice for the communities of Southeast Los Angeles. You may have visited hazardous sites via their Toxic Bike Tour or heard them speaking up regarding the negative impact an expanded 710 corridor would have on their already pollution-burdened communities. If you have followed the closure process of lead-acid battery recycler Exide, then you know that EYCEJ (along with Communities for a Better Environment, Resurrection Church, and other advocates) has long been vocal in calling for the closure of the plant as well as for an investigation into the state agencies that allowed Exide to operate unchecked for so long. Their sustained advocacy was instrumental in getting the Department of Toxic Substances Control to finally change the way they were handling the Exide case. And their vigilance will ensure that community needs and concerns remain front and center as the closure process gets underway.”
“Mark Lopez – The third generation in his family to have battled against Exide and other toxic industries in the area, Mark (mark!) Lopez, Executive Director of East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice, says he organizes in the community where he was raised “so that the fourth generation doesn’t have to.” While EYCEJ has consistently taken on battles ranging from the 710 Corridor Project, to toxic rail yards, his leadership in the fight to hold lead-acid battery recycler Exide (as well as the relevant state agencies) accountable for lead contamination of as many as 10,000 homes has been exemplary. Not only has EYCEJ made extraordinary efforts to organize and inform residents of potential harm in the affected communities under his direction, but as co-chair of the Exide Technologies Advisory Group, Lopez has worked to ensure that the health and concerns of those residents remain front and center as state agencies hash out how they will undertake the most extensive lead cleanup of its kind in California.”