The Blue Dot is hot—in Richmond

Update, March 20, 2015: We have now been informed that Victoria city council is bringing the environmental bill of rights to their area association and, with any luck, from there to the Union of B.C. Municipalities.

Update, March 19, 2015: On Sunday, April 19, Richmond Blue Dot will extend a broad welcome to the Richmond celebration of “Connect the Blue Dots—A national day of community action.” Details soon.

Update, March 18, 2015: Richmond will be urging the Lower Mainland Local Government Association to ask the provincial government to enact a provincial environmental bill of rights. It includes the Right to a Healthy Environment that Richmond adopted last October 14, becoming a model for Canadian municipalities. It also goes further, as shown in this report from Amarjeet Rattan, Richmond’s Director of Intergovernmental Affairs. It has been ratified by committee, and it’s likely to be ratified by council on March 23. Great work, council and staff, in proactively furthering the Right to a Healthy Environment! 

Richmond Blue Dot team

When hot means popular, it’s great that the Blue Dot is hot in Richmond, British Columbia. It means that the community is behind the Right to a Healthy Environment in Canada and on Planet Earth, which (as seen from space) is a blue dot.

Lots of citizens in blue showed the strength of the Blue Dot campaign the Right to Healthy Environment at the Richmond council meeting of Tuesday, October 14. They included the group of Richmond Blue Dot campaigners shown above, displaying signed cards of support. National organizer Sophika Kostyniuk is in front of the Richmond Blue Dot Movement sign  with her young daughter.

In a positive and collaborative spirit, we experienced an excellent presentation by Sophika Kostyniuk and three young people, then several citizen follow-ups, and finally council follow-ups by every member there. I think that Richmond is the first small or mid-size city in Canada to take that step. (Congratulations to Montreal for being the first large city to act.)

Sophika has described the event in a Blue Dot blog article that includes this:

On October 14, Richmond city council unanimously adopted a declaration in support of the Right to a Healthy Environment, ensuring that access to fresh air, clean water and healthy food guides the community’s direction.

The residents of Richmond have clearly demonstrated that citizens have the power to positively transform their community by gathering around a key issue and amplifying a hopeful message. (more here)

You can watch the relevant Richmond council meeting online. The Blue Dot presentations begin at 00:19:25. Council discussion about the Right to a Healthy Environment begins at 00:37:00.

You can read other articles on this blog about the Blue Dot movement and the Right to a Healthy Environment by clicking on the Blue Dot Right category.

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