We are proud of our accomplishments this year. As we reflect on 2021, much gratitude arises for the many people who have supported us in our endeavors. We:
- Wrote a Community Bill of Rights with Buckingham neighbors impacted by a potential industrial gold mine. Read the proposed Toxic Trespass ordinance here
- Launched a campaign to support driving that bill into Buckingham County law, including an online petition: bit.ly/bhamord
- Forged a partnership with Friends of Buckingham (FoB) for the industrial metallic mining campaign including
- Updated the website. Created a website community action page
- Tabled at 20 community events
- Hosted a Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) Democracy School
- Hosted an Advisory Council gathering with a focus on decolonization https://vacommunityrights.org/about/council/
- Actively participate with the National Community Rights Network (NCRN)
- Joined Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature (GARN)
- Joined Virginia Environmental Justice Collaborative (VEJC)
- Joined Virginia Conservation Network (VCN)
- Published monthly newsletters
- Developed PowerPoint presentations on industrial metallic mining
- Interviewed on Radio WRWK 93.9 TheWorkFM, Midlothian, VA. YouTube link.
- Received a grant from Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) to support outreach
- Attend weekly Black Lives Matter silent vigil, started by Charlottesville Insight Meditation Group, Wednesdays, 12:30-1:30, Court Square Slave Auction House.
- Established weekly Community Composting program with Yogaville Community Association (YCA)
- Maintain presence on Facebook and Twitter @VAComRights
We have succeeded in writing a Community Bill of Rights (CBOR), with our local Buckingham County community, that would protect us from the toxic trespass we know would come with industrial metallic mining that has targeted our home county. Currently we are coordinating a door to door campaign to support this bill, in addition to an online petition campaign. We developed educational materials about the harms of metallic mining and the protections that a CBOR approach would achieve.
By protecting our area of the world, we contribute to the larger paradigm shift that is needed to course-correct for the ecological crisis we are in. We know that opening up metallic mining in Buckingham would impact the drinking water downstream from us along the James River for millions of people.
We are grassroots and we aim to help communities to… recognize the legal rights of forests to exist without toxic trespass, of rivers to flourish and flow, and of communities to say ‘no’ to harmful projects that threaten their health, environment, and future. And YES! To forward thinking, common sense ways to govern ourselves that consider the present and the generations to come. Community means all of us, all our relations, all of Creation. We are all in this together. Together we are stronger.