Effective today, 8 September 2017, we have changed our name to Redefine Tacoma. We’ve made this change to address the concerns expressed by community members and to reflect more clearly the mission of our group—to transition this region’s environment and economy away from a toxic and polluted past and toward a healthier and more sustainable tomorrow.
The name RedLine Tacoma was chosen to reflect an international movement emphasizing indigenous perspectives. We did not think anyone would associate a progressive environmental movement with the racist and unfair practice of “redlining”. Clearly, we misunderstood how readily our group’s name would evoke a history of institutional racism, and we sincerely apologize to anyone for whom the name recalled the trauma of discrimination in housing.
Our group was always meant to be an instrument of the community to fight for environmental justice and for the Tacoma we want. In reality, the name is not the important part—rather it is the work we achieve together. As Redefine Tacoma, we will emphasize that in realizing our mission of environmental justice, the word “justice” is as important as “environment.” We will continue to:
· Advocate for clean energy, clean industry, and clean jobs.
· Fight against the expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure.
· Stand with our partners in the environmental movement, especially the Puyallup Tribe’s Water Warriors, who are committed to protecting our region’s environment as the indigenous community has done for millennia.
· Alert the public to risks that fossil fuel projects such as PSE’s LNG refinery pose to the lives of the 1,500 men and women held against their will at the nearby ICE immigration prison (Northwest Detention Center).
Most of all, we stand eager to continue the important work of protecting the community of which we are all a part. The recent tragic events in Houston—the third “500-year” storm in three years—remind us how vulnerable we are as a port city to the dangers posed by the fossil fuel industry. Grave changes to the climate are already underway. If we are to avoid the worst-case scenarios, we need to move to zero-carbon energy sources like solar, wind, and tidal energy now, and stop building new fossil fuel infrastructure. Together, we can “redefine” Tacoma from a struggling city with a polluted past to a thriving city with a clean and healthy future!