Youth Organizing for Environmental Justice

YEJA logo

YEJA logo by youth organizer Quandre Brown

Why is youth organizing important, and what are the unique qualities of youth organizing? In this episode, we talked with Jennifer Phung, a community organizer working with Youth Environmental Justice Alliance (YEJA) and OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon.

Jennifer Phung is a community organizer born and raised in Oakland, California, and leads OPAL’s multi-racial youth organizing program, Youth Environmental Justice Alliance (YEJA). Jennifer’s organizing background comes from a range of experiences in labor, tenant organizing, and youth organizing. YEJA develops youth leaders through political education, campaign organizing, and skill-building to address issues of Environmental Justice. Jennifer works with YEJA to create a space for youth to gain skills to take collective action on issues affecting their communities.

Vivian Satterfield is second-generation bilingual Chinese American, born and raised in inner city Chicago. She believes in the power of organizing, the efficacy of people-centered public policy, and the therapeutic benefits of a long bike ride. Vivian is currently the Deputy Director at OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon, where she’s helped bring grassroots-led campaigns and coalition efforts around issues such as lifting Oregon’s 17-year long ban on inclusionary zoning, and the extensions of transfer times on TriMet, to success.

Two Spirit Movement and Environmental Protection

Two Spirit Movement and Environmental Protection


What does it mean to be Two Spirit, and what has the Two Spirit movement’s role been in protection of basic rights. We spoke with Candi Brings Plenty and Court Morse about their path, which led them to Standing Rock as water protectors.

Candi Brings PlentyCandi Brings Plenty, Oglala Lakota Sioux is a National Queer Cysgender Indiginous Woman and has worked for over two decades for not just Indigenous people, but for everyone in community to receive medicine. Candi is completing her Masters in Public Health Administration, and has a graduate certificate in Non Profit management. On levels related to gender, race, sexual orientation, and economic background, she is unmatched in her passion and strength to push every issue forward. Candi brings Plenty is a single mother of two beautiful daughters, an educator and community health worker, and spiritual practitioner.

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Court Morse has over ten years of organizing and community action experience. Court grew up in Wisconsin and came out to Oregon to attend Portland State University. There she worked with the Oregon Student Association as student body president. She has had the opportunity since to run numerous political and human rights campaigns focusing on the environment, higher education, racial and LGBT justice, and immigrant/refugee rights, primarily in Oregon. Court is enrolled with the Sault Ste. Marie tribe of Chippewa Indians, Ojibwe, Anishinaabe and goes by she or they pronouns. She attended Oceti Sakowin on four occasions with the last trip a permanent move to camp prior to eviction. She toured with the Two Spirit Nation to tell the story of Standing Rock and to support other Two-Spirit Queer Indigenous warriors, elders and youth in their work. She’s proud to stand by Candi as her close friend and support her vision for our people.

Race/Ethnicity & Neighborhood Housing Choice


How does race factor into the choices and opportunities involved in homeownership? We explored the answer to this question and many more with researcher C. Aujean Lee from Los Angeles.

C. Aujean Lee profile photoC. Aujean Lee is a doctoral candidate at UCLA in the Department of Urban Planning. She received her Master’s of Urban Planning from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and her B.A. from UCLA in Psychology and Asian American Studies. Her research examines the racial wealth gap with a focus on homeownership and the role of ethnic- and neighborhood-based institutions.

Roll credits: 

Today’s show was produced by Steph Routh and Alexis Gabriel. Music is by Breuss Arrizabalaga Quintet. You can find us on our Facebook page and on Twitter @whyisntanyone.

We are a project of Umbrella, a Portland-based nonprofit that encourages community-based street culture. We record from the delightful Airstream-now-studio, StreamPDX.

On Supremacy in Oregon


On April 29th, over 100 White people came to 82nd Ave in Portland, Oregon, chanting “Go back to where you come from” and other racist and anti-immigrant sentiments. A portion of 82nd Avenue sits within the Jade District, one of the most diverse neighborhoods in Oregon state.

Where did this come from, and what does this say about our region?

Zahir Janmohamad profile photo
Zahir Janmohamed
is the Policy Director for APANO, the Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon. He is also the co-host of Racist Sandwich, a podcast about race and food.


Scot Nakagawa
has spent the last four decades as a pro-democracy activist, addressing issues of race and gender inequity, religious bigotry, and anti-LGBTQ oppression through community-based campaigns, cultural organizing, popular education, writing, and public policy advocacy.

Scot Nakagawa profile photoScot has worked with numerous organizations and movements over the years, having served as Fight the Right Organizer and Field Director of the National LGBTQ Task Force; Education Co-Coordinator of the Highlander Research and Education Center; Associate Director of the Western Prison Project (Partnership for Safety and Justice); and Executive Director of the MRG Foundation of Oregon, and of the Social Justice Fund, NW.

Scot’s primary contribution has been to the fight against vigilante white supremacist groups, white nationalism, Nativism, and authoritarian evangelical political movements. In this work, he has served as a strategist, organizer, and social movement analyst. Scot is busy at work on a number of projects, including writing a playbook for anti-authoritarians and a primer on race and power. His writings have been included in Race, Gender, and Class in the United States: An Integrated Study, 9th EditionKilling Trayvons: An Anthology of American Violence; and Eyes Right!: Challenging the Right Wing Backlash. Scot is a former Alston/Bannerman Fellow, and the recipient of the 2017 Association of Asian American Studies Community Leader Award.

Find him on Facebook.

Roll credits: 

Today’s show was produced by Steph Routh and Alexis Gabriel. Music is by Breuss Arrizabalaga Quintet. You can find us on our Facebook page and on Twitter @whyisntanyone.

If you liked this show, help us keep it going by donating via our website, whyisntanyone.com, where you can also leave us comments, questions, and ideas for future topics. Check out the people who have supported us on Crowdrise!

We are a project of Umbrella, a Portland-based nonprofit that encourages community-based street culture. We record from the delightful Airstream-now-studio, StreamPDX.

The Portland People’s Climate Movement March

Vivian Satterfield photoIn this episode, we will be talking with Vivian Satterfield with OPAL about the Portland People’s Climate Movement March.

Vivian is second-generation bilingual Chinese American, born and raised in inner city Chicago. She believes in the power of organizing, the efficacy of people-centered public policy, and the therapeutic benefits of a long bike ride. Vivian is currently the Deputy Director at OPAL Environmental Justice Oregon, where she’s helped bring grassroots-led campaigns and coalition efforts around issues such as lifting Oregon’s 17-year long ban on inclusionary zoning, and the extensions of transfer times on TriMet, to success.

Portland People's Climate Movement March, April 29th, 2017 12:00pm-5:00pm at Dawson Park

Roll credits: 

Today’s show was edited by Steph Routh with help from Alexis Gabriel. Music is by Breuss Arrizabalaga Quintet. You can find us on our Facebook page and on Twitter @whyisntanyone.

If you liked this show, help us keep it going by donating via our website, whyisntanyone.com, where you can also leave us comments, questions, and ideas for future topics. Check out the people who have supported us on Crowdrise!

We are a project of Umbrella, a Portland-based nonprofit that encourages community-based street culture. We record from the delightful Airstream-now-studio, StreamPDX.

Displacement and Wage Theft: An Interview with NMASS

The NMASS crew with co-hosts Leslie and Steph in front of the Stream.The National Mobilization Against Sweatshops (NMASS) is a multi-trade, multi-ethnic workers center where working people unite across industry, race, nationality and gender to fight for the changes needed in workplaces, communities and lives.

JoAnn Lum, Karah Newton, and Kai Wen Yang from NMASS joined us from their headquarters in New York City to discuss wage theft, displacement, and their “ambitious” plans for a just future.

Roll credits: 

Today’s show was produced by Leslie Lum and edited by Steph Routh. Music is by Breuss Arrizabalaga Quintet. You can find us on our Facebook page and on Twitter @whyisntanyone.

If you liked this show, help us keep it going by donating via our website, whyisntanyone.com, where you can also leave us comments, questions, and ideas for future topics. Check out the people who have supported us on Crowdrise!

We are a project of Umbrella, a Portland-based nonprofit that encourages community-based street culture. We record from the delightful Airstream-now-studio, StreamPDX.

Anita Yap & the Multi-Cultural Collaborative

“There must exist a paradigm, a practical model of social change that includes an understanding of ways to transform consciousness that are linked to efforts to transform structures.” – bell hooks

Anita YapThe MultiCultural Collaborative is a people-of-color-led consulting firm based in Portland, OR empowering communities to build capacity in local governments for equitable public policy decisions and service delivery.

Anita Yap is the founding partner of the MultiCultural Collaborative.

Anita has worked in Oregon’s communities for most of her life in public policy, health equity, community development, land use, transportation, natural resources and housing with government, nonprofit and small business.

Vision Zero & Campaign Zero: A National Conversation


Campaign Zero

Vision Zero and Campaign Zero are two platforms describing a path to safer streets. If you’ll remember, we were lucky to have Tamika Butler and Keith Benjamin in Episode 5 to talk about the importance of a racial justice lens in Vision Zero work. In this episode, we will build on the ‘why’ racial equity should be central to this policy (or any policy) discussed earlier, and focus today on the ‘how’, like, what are the critical next steps to make racial equity central.

Join a conversation with guest co-host Naomi Doerner, Sam Sinyangwe, Nora Liu, Leah Shahum, and co-host Steph Routh.

Naomi Doerner is a social justice and racial equity strategist within the national active transportation community. She is Principal Planner & Equity Strategist for Assembly for Equitable Cities.

Nora Liu is the Racial Equity Here Manager for the Government Alliance on Race and Equity at the Center for Social Inclusion.

Sam Sinyangwe is the Co-Founder of WeTheProtesters, a national advocacy organization equipping activists with cutting-edge tools, research and policy solutions to end police violence in their communities. Examples of their work include MappingPoliceViolence.org, CheckthePolice.org and ProtesterProgress.org.

Leah Shahum is the founder and director of the Vision Zero Network, a national campaign supporting cities working toward Vision Zero—zero traffic fatalities and severe injuries.

 

The 2016 Olympics in Rio: An Interview with Jules Boykoff

Logos of previous Olympics gamesEvery four years we tune in to the excitement, passion, and drama of the Olympic Games. It’s hard not to get wrapped up in all the the anticipation and celebration, for one of the most widely watched events in the world. Each successive Olympics seem to be a bigger spectacle than the last, with dramatic and expensive changes to the city itself. What are some of the ways the Olympics transform the physical structure and form of the host city, and who pays for the hefty price tag?

Jules Boykoff profile photoJules Boykoff is a former professional soccer player, and represented the men’s US Olympic soccer team in international play. Jules has extensively researched the politics and activism in the Olympic Games, including the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver Canada, the 2012 Summer Games in London, the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi Russia, and the upcoming Summer Games in Rio De Janeiro Brazil. His writings on the Olympics include Activism and the Olympics: Dissent at the Games in Vancouver, Celebration Capitalism and the Olympic Games, and the recently published Power Games: A Political History of the Olympics.

Photo credit: Luke & Jules

Israel Bayer and Jes Larson: Getting Real About Housing and Homelessness

Picture of Monopoly housesWhere did our housing and homelessness crisis come from, and how do we create solutions as a city and country? How are people talking about housing and homelessness, and how should that narrative change?

Join Street Roots Executive Director, Israel Bayer; Welcome Home Coalition Executive Director, Jes Larson; and “Why Isn’t Anyone…?” co-hosts Justin Buri and Steph Routh for a history lesson and a conversation about housing, homelessness, and the future.

Photo credit: Woodley Wonderworks