Hispanas Organized for Political Equality (HOPE), in conjunction with Latina Leaders of Kern County and the Center on Race, Poverty, and the Environment hosted Latina Empowerment Day in Bakersfield this past November.
Valerie Gorospe from the Center on Race, Poverty, & Environment spoke at HOPE’s annual Latina Empowerment Day this past November in Bakersfield. Many of our BHC partners were able to attend thanks to The California Endowment.
Valerie spoke about several local environmental justice issues including poor air and water quality, and the ways in which our heath is impacted, particularly children. High rates of childhood asthma are associated with air pollution. Delano has some of the worst water quality in the State; residents pay for tap water they cannot drink, children go to school with water bottles because parents don’t want them drinking from the faucets.
Valerie asked all of the women in the room to make California the leader in environmental justice policies.
The one day intensive workshop series is designed to empower Latinas to increase their community impact and strengthen their skills and knowledge in a variety of issues. This year's topics included financial empowerment, energy and the environment, and personal skill-building.
One attendee stated that the day created a “safe community for Latinas in the San Joaquin Valley with a well-planned agenda and current issues” that are valuable to our community.