Campaign: Green Schools for Chicago
On September 20, 2019, thousands of Chicago’s students joined the global climate strike and rallied for bold climate action. Since then, Chicago’s youth have led the movements to address racism, inequality, and environmental justice. From protesting polluters like General Iron to fighting racist policing in and out of schools, young people have inspired us to fight harder for our communities. Now, young people in organizations like Sunrise are anchoring labor-community coalitions like the THRIVE Agenda to demand a green recovery that prioritizes the health and economic well-being of working-class people and people of color as it transforms our economy, including energy and consumption, to address the climate crisis and our country’s systemic inequities.
Our recovery from the pandemic cannot return us to the world we left behind in March 2020, with the callous and complacent government policies that led us to a devastating economic, climate and public health crisis. Our public institutions must be reinvisioned to uplift and sustain us, and we can start with our public schools. The Chicago Teachers Union is joining the fight for a green recovery by launching a campaign we’re calling Green Schools for Chicago.
We invite you to join us in raising demands for the mayor and CPS to invest in:
Green, Healthy, and Safe School Buildings
- Retrofit and weatherize our buildings.
- Remediate schools for lead, asbestos, and mold.
- Install electric heating and cooling systems.
- Install new ventilation for COVID-19 and energy recovery.
- Install solar panels and source 100% renewable energy.
Green Jobs and Environmental Justice
- Work with unions to train and hire unemployed CPS parents.
- Provide cooling centers and electricity to communities during heat waves, disasters, and power outages.
- Prioritize the communities hit hardest by COVID-19, environmental racism, and systemic disinvestment.
Climate and Sustainability Education
- Support climate justice curriculum across the grade levels.
- Expand solar energy career programs already in place at Juarez and Prosser.
- Implement school composting programs, community gardening, and other sustainable practices.
Read the Resolution that our House of Delegates passed at its December 9, 2020 meeting.