Most people wait until the presidential elections to learn about pressing issues and legislation changes, but you don’t have to wait every four years to get involved. Local governments hold elections year-round for council members, and many of these candidates push for environmental protection policies. In fact, environmental politics is represented by its own political party and needs way more attention than given. Environmental justice began as a massive public interest with its strong connection to social justice after World War ll. This eventually led to the creation of Green Politics in the 1970s.
It may seem like an individual vote doesn’t matter, but voting is one of the most powerful ways to get our voices heard. As the foundation of our democracy, voting for a candidate or supporting party can literally affect the future of our cities and quality of life.
So, if you’re looking for a way to get involved and start making an impact in your local area, here are several easy ways to get started.
Do Your Research
All it takes is a simple google search to see what is going on in your city. You can easily find out who your elected officials are and if their plans align with what is important to you. Most officials have a website that explains what policies they want to implement and environmental concerns will have their own section.
Join a Political a Party
Choosing a political party can help you stay up to date on major changes. This is also a great way to be active in local politics. The Green Party is a formal political party specifically focused on social and environmental justice. Each state has its own chapter for The Green Party.
Go to Meetings
Attending city council meetings may not be as action-packed as getting out in the streets and protesting but many important discussions happen in these meetings. Some even offer audience input making it the perfect place to mention what needs to be done to have a more sustainable city.
Get in Contact with Representatives
Unlike the president, local officials are a little bit easier to get in contact with. You can write a letter, send an email, or even reach out to their various social media platforms. In fact, you can tag your local officials in posts that show the effects of global warming and climate change in order to get their attention.
This is the most obvious but one of the most powerful ways to get involved. After you have done your research go out and vote for who you think is the best. Inform your family and friends about these important issues and encourage them to vote as well.