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Latino Communities Are Some Of The Most Impacted By Climate Change. Here’s One Organization Fighting Back

@GreenLatinos / Twitter

For many U.S. Latinos, environmental outreach and engagement aren’t as accessible compared to others. Yet a recent study shows that Latinos, particularly those who prefer to speak Spanish, really care about our planet. According to a study out of Yale University, a huge percentage of U.S. Latinos have never been contacted by an environmental organization working to reduce global warming or tackle climate change. These findings are startling considering a 2017 poll that showed that Latinos care more and are more aware of environmental issues than African Americans, Native Americans, Pacific Islanders, Asian Americans, and Caucasians. Various advocacy groups are now targeting Latinos, where often environmental outreach programs have never been accessible.

Philadelphia leading the charge when it comes to engaging the Latino community around environmental issues.

The Philadelphia Office of Sustainability revamped its outreach effort this year by hiring a community strategist to find ways to engage with the Latino community. Christine Knapp, director at the Office of Sustainability, says they needed more community input especially after feedback for its sustainability plan for 2016 showed people wanted to be included in the process.

“We haven’t engaged Latinos, and we haven’t engaged with any community sufficiently well on these issues.” Knapp told The Philadelphia Inquirer.

The city is working with several sustainability programs including one to reduce temperatures in Latino neighborhoods.

The program, called The Heat Vulnerability Index, is a new program recently launched to reduce temperatures in neighborhoods of color, which face environmental injustices frequently. Program volunteers ask residents whether they need more trees, know how white roofs can cool structures, or even understand how heat affects health.

The need to engage Latinos around environmental issues prompted Washington-based GreenLatinos to team up with Moms Clean Air Force to create Ecomadres.

GreenLatinos was formed to address local and national environmental issues that affect Latinos, like the heat issues in Philadelphia. Mark Magaña, the CEO and founding president of the GreenLatinos says caring about the environment is instilled in Latinos more than people think.

“Latinos learn their stewardship of the land through their grandmothers and parents,” Magaña told The Philadelphia Inquirer. “They eat all the food on the plate, turn off the light when they leave the room, eat all the parts of the animal, use water wisely because it might not come the next day; things that we do organically, because it’s in the back of the chanclas.”

Ecomadres is a collaborative program that focuses on bringing Latina moms together to advocate for the environment.

Ecomadres wants to address issues of clean air, climate, and toxins affecting the health of Latino children and families. The hope is that by addressing these issues, communities will stand up and advocate environmental issues within their own homes. The organization did a study that showed 68 percent of Latinos live in areas that do not meet federal air quality standards compared to 58 percent of Caucasians. By educating and advocating in communities, they are showing that Latinos can get behind and support environmental organizations.

Ecomadres has chapters established in Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas.

READ: Here Are 20 Latinxs Fighting For Environmental Justice

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Here's How More Than 100 People Survived An Aeromexico Plane Crash In The State Of Durango

things that matter

Here’s How More Than 100 People Survived An Aeromexico Plane Crash In The State Of Durango

@thenamesashleyy / Twitter

Earlier this week, Aeromexico’s Flight AM2431 crashed in the state of Durango. No fatalities were reported from the plane crash. There were 103 passengers onboard the flight when it crashed shortly after take off in the northern state of Durango. With no fatalities, it is no wonder Twitter users showered the survivors with praise and love.

According to some officials, strong wind after take off brought the airliner down..

Credit: Twitter @AlexInAir

While the accident is still being investigated, some are saying the accident happened because of a strong gust of wind. The wind allegedly caused the left wing to touch the ground knocking the engines loose.

The Embraer 190 was at full capacity with 99 passengers and four crew members.

Credit: Twitter @MarkSinatra

After the crash landing, 97 people were admitted to the hospital for treatment and 64 were released only 24 hours after the accident.

Only two passengers reported serious injuries.

Credit: Twitter @bijou_03

Two victims with serious injuries have been reported. One is a young girl who suffered burns on 25 percent of her body and the other is the plane’s pilot who underwent spine surgery.

Some passengers of the flight shared their own stories on Twitter as well.

Credit: Twitter @ramin_parsa

One of the passengers mentioned that at some point during the takeoff, the visibility went down to zero seconds before the plane took a plunge. Another one said that the wind was so intense that the wings of the plane were shaking.

Like the 17-year-old girl who recorded the whole thing with her phone.

Credit: Twitter @thenamesashleyy

Garcia is a high school student from Northlake, Illinois and was one of the 65 American passengers of Flight AM2431. She mentioned during an interview that she decided to record the event because she had a feeling that something was going to happen if the plane took off during that storm.

There was talk that the survival of the passengers is thanks to divine intervention.

Credit: Twitter @GallardoABC7

Rev. Esequiel Sanchez whose also from the Chicago sustained some injuries and has been reported to be stable. In an interview, he mentions that at seconds after the plane took off there was no visibility which resulted in the plane taking a violent plunge.

Or the White Sox Fan who had a Tequila shot as soon as he was back at his hotel.

Credit: Twitter @mares62J

According to Herrera, it was only drizzling and it wasn’t until the plane was taking off that the light rain turned into hail and violent winds. He recalls that the wind tilted the plane and then sliding out of control as the aircraft hit the ground right before bursting into flames.

Others wondered why President Trump never mention any of the 65 Americans on the flight.

Credit: Twitter @lorenamuniz11

Tbh, if it’s happening in Mexico and doesn’t include his wall, why would he say anything?

The plane crashed only 1,000 feet away from the runway.

Credit: Flight AM2431. Digital Image. The Sunday Times. August 1, 2018.

Authorities say that right after the plunge the left wing of the twin-engine hit the ground which resulted in the plane losing both engines. Then the aircraft drifted a few hundred yards off the airport’s runway before it started to burn.

People are shocked at the lack of fatalities from the crash.

Credit: Twitter @Xcthol

But experts say that it’s no surprise that so many people survived. Former Inspector General of the Department of Transportation mentions that it’s becoming more common that no lives are taken during such events.

But it’s pretty common that this happens.

Credit: Twitter @TheSimZone

In fact, it’s reported by the Civil Aviation Organization that 87 percent of plane crashes report no deaths due to constant improvement of safety measures.

Some even took the opportunity to remind us of the importance of following security protocols.

Credit: Twitter @modorus

Clearly the flight attendants and airline companies might know what they are talking about when they give you the safety speech.

Aeromexico used their own Twitter account to keep people alert on what was happening.

Credit: Twitter @Sirdemby

They let people know how many people were and were not in the hospitals.

Passengers have started filing lawsuits against the airline company.

Credit: Twitter @AshleyReyesCom

One of the survivors, a Chicago teacher is suing Aeromexico for negligence.

But things have started to settle down after a few days.

Credit: Twitter @sehurwitz

Passengers are starting to talk to the American press about what happened during the plane crash.

American passengers are starting to go back home.

Credit: Twitter @ZambranoABC7

The Reverend has finally gone back to home to Des Plaines, Illinois.

The victims who suffered serious injuries are starting to heal.

Credit: Twitter @pkonptmor

Like Aeromexico’s Flight AM2431 pilot, Carlos Galvan.

And now the people are looking for ways to support the victims.

Credit: Twitter @mares62J

Hopefully, Alberto will get to meet the White Sox.

Only proving to the world how resilient Latinos can be.

Credit: Twitter @camila_bijoux

Even in the worst of times, Latinos stand strong and always try to maintain the best possible attitude to overcome whatever life throws our way. 

READ: The Cause Of This Colombian Plane Crash Is Unknown, But The Incident Happened To Be Captured On Video

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