OPAL's multi-racial youth program, Youth Environmental Justice Alliance, is leading a campaign to sustain, expand, extend and improve transit access for youth in Portland. The goal for the campaign is to show the city, TriMet, our schools, and our community that affordable public transportation is important for youth to lead healthy lives, be able to thrive, and be successful.
On Saturday November 14th, Youth Environmental Justice Alliance (YEJA) leaders successfully launched the “YouthPass to the Future” campaign at the JAMS/APANO community space. With over 65 attendees, low-income youth and youth of color at YEJA demanded permanent funding for the current YouthPass program and called for the expansion of YouthPass to East Portland Schools like David Douglas and Parkrose.
Jeff Deng, a senior at David Douglas High School and a leader at YEJA, said, “We don’t have YouthPass at David Douglas, and it’s hard to participate in clubs and after school programs. The activity bus is very limiting. Since my family works late, I can’t rely on them to get a ride. Public transit plays a huge role in my life – if I miss the school bus, or need to get home from club meeting, I have to ride TriMet. But it’s hard to afford it as a high school student.”
YEJA and our allies demand equal access to YouthPass, and a committed investment in student success. This effort seeks to influence TriMet, City of Portland, Metro Regional Government, Multnomah County, and local school districts to come together to address this inequity. Learn more.
Building Power for Environmental Justice
OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon has been on the front lines of Portland's movement for environmental and social justice since our founding in 2006. We fight for greater self-determination within our most impacted communities. We have built a powerful and inclusive movement at the intersection of transportation, housing and health, lifting up the voices of people of color, low-income residents, women, immigrants, people with disabilities, youth and seniors to speak for themselves and make change.
We're the hub of the city's movement for transportation, housing, employment and climate justice. We convene partners across sectors, and build capacity to advance justice for historically-marginalized communities. Learn more by exploring our "Home" and "About" sections. Want to get involved? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (503) 342-8910