The Environmental Justice Movement in South Baltimore


1. Van Smith, Trash Talk, July 22, 2014.

2. Environmental Integrity Project, Air Quality Profile of Curtis Bay, Brooklyn, and Hawkins Point, Maryland. June, 2012.

3. Lawrence Brown looks at the structural divisions between the affluent, predominantly white L-shaped neighborhood cluster near downtown and the mainly impoverished Black, butterfly-shaped neighborhoods in East and West Baltimore. He also has coined the term “Baltimore apartheid,” which became a popular way of describing the two Baltimores in the aftermath of the uprisings. Much of this stemmed from a combination of containment (i.e. segregation) and clearance (forced displacement) of Black and Brown residents. Multiple systems enforced and expanded Baltimore apartheid including criminal justice, real estate, public housing, finance, banking, and economic and community development. For more on Baltimore apartheid, see Lawrence Brown, “Community Health and Baltimore Apartheid: Revisiting Development, Inequity, and Tax Policy,” in Baltimore Revisited: Rethinking a Right to the City (Rutgers University Press, forthcoming).

4. For more on air quality, see here.

5. Commission for Racial Justice. Toxic Waste and Race in the United States. 1987.

6. While United Workers has supported other important Black organizations across the city, such as Leaders of a Beautiful Struggle (a Black policy think tank), Tubman House (an organization formed to address issues experienced by the residents of Freddy Gray’s Sandtown Winchester, and the Algebra Project (predominantly Black-led movement that uses math as an organizing tool to ensure quality education), their struggle is multiethnic and multiracial. In part, this has to do with the demographics of the community, which is 50 percent Black, 25 percent Caucasian, 23 percent Latino, and 1 percent Asian. Racial justice, to United Workers, is also about social, economic, and environmental-health justice. They argue that race equity must be one of the many frameworks we use to begin to redevelop and rebuild communities that have been systematically gutted and drained of critical resources.

7. Robert Alejandro. A blueprint for development without displacement in Baltimore. Jan 29, 2016.