House passes environmental justice bill, a first for Washington

House passes environmental justice bill, a first for Washington

The Washington State House of Representatives passed a bill on Wednesday to address environmental health disparities experienced by diverse and lower income communities.

The Healthy Environment for All (HEAL) Act passed the house Wednesday with a 88-10 vote. The bill now moves to the Senate for a concurrent vote.

The HEAL Act would encourage use of the Washington health disparities mapping tool to allocate where health impacts are at their worst.

From there, a task force would work with state agencies to decide how to best target investments for those areas.

“This is a historic advance for families and communities disproportionately impacted by pollution and climate change, and a significant milestone for environmental justice in our state,” said David Mendoza, Legislative Affairs Director of Front and Centered.

A coalition of over 70 organizations, Front and Centered fights for climate justice within communities of color.

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