From the Acting Executive Director's Desk

For many of us, our kids went back to school this week in the midst of another heatwave. For some, school days may be cut short due to the heat as classroom temperatures reach 90+ degrees. Teaching, learning and health are likely to suffer in this heat. Staff and students may experience headaches, drowsiness, difficulties concentrating in addition to pre-existing conditions such as asthma may be triggered. This is a hot reminder why we need the Legislature to pass a temperature control bill (A665/S563) that would require each Board of Education to adopt a policy establishing temperature controls standards and guidelines for school district facilities. 

The extreme heat is also a reminder that extreme weather is happening more frequently due to climate change. I hope you will join WEC this Saturday, September 8 in Morristown at 11 am as we join with the People's Climate March: Rise for Climate, Jobs and Justice in New Jersey. WEC is a proud co-sponsor of the event, along with Jersey Renews, GreenFaith and other allies. Please see below story for more details. 

In Unity,
Debra Coyle McFadden

People's Climate March:
Build a Movement for Climate, Jobs, & Justice in NJ

Please join WEC this Saturday, September 8, 11 am - 12 pm, Morristown Hall, 200 South Street, Morristown for the People's Climate March. We will join others across the world to take to the streets to show our leaders that we demand real action on climate change that include creating good, family-sustaining jobs. #RiseForClimateNJ.

2018 WEC Awards Dinner: November 30

Please join us on Friday, November 30, 6pm for the WEC Annual Awards Dinner to be held at the College of New Jersey. This year we honor: 
  • Rev. Dr. Charles F. Boyer, Pastor, Bethel AME Church in Woodbury and Founder, Salvation and Social Justice
  • Dan Fatton, NJ State Director, The Energy Foundation and former WEC Executive Director
  • Bernie Gerard, Jr., Vice President, Health Professionals and Allied Employees, AFT/AFL-CIO
  • Analilia Mejia, Executive Director, NJ Working Families Alliance 
  • Rising Star Award: Justis Brown
Please join us in celebrating the achievements of our honorees by either sponsoring the event, placing an ad in the journal (print and online) and/or purchasing tickets. More detail here.

Time for Turbines: What a Difference a Year Makes

On August 20, Jersey Renews and the Business Network for Offshore Wind hosted Time for Turbines: What a Difference a Year Makes at the ACUA Wastewater Treatment Facility in Atlantic City. Last year, offshore wind advocates were advocating for the need for offshore wind without the support of our governor. This year, the event was expanded into a half-day conference where attendees heard from leaders in offshore wind development, environmentalist, labor leaders and government officials on how to make offshore wind a reality in New Jersey. Read the event recap on the Jersey Renews site.

New Jersey Warehouse Workers Deserve Better

Many cities and towns in New Jersey are home to warehouse distribution centers. These are places where people pack and ship products that are later sold at and other large online retailers, as well as brick-and-mortar retail stores.

Ensuring that jobs at these warehouses are safe, secure, and pay family-sustaining wages is crucial for the future of New Jersey's economy.

Read the full opinion-editorial on by Brandon Castro, and Alberto Arroyo, International Vice President Workers' United, SEIU and WEC Public Need Over Corporate Greed organizer.

We're part of an Emerging Voice America Should Listen to: Young People

Rodents in the cafeteria. Crumbling ceilings. Mold growing in the classroom. Extreme temperatures in excess of 90 degrees. Toxic air quality from poor indoor air ventilation. Concerns about asbestos, lead and other toxins in the walls and pipes. Unfortunately, these are common problems right here in our New Jersey schools. 

The Healthy Schools Now coalition is committed to addressing these conditions and ensuring healthy school environments for all students. We believe that access to a healthy and safe school environment is essential for receiving a thorough and efficient education. 

Recently, new voices have caused us to think about broadening our mission. Students expressed fear that what happened in Texas, Florida, and other schools around the country, could happen in their schools. They talked about how easy it was to get into a school. They highlighted how simple it would be to bring a gun into a classroom. 

Read the full opinion-editorial on from the Star-Ledger by Jerell Blakeley, WEC Campaign Organizer for Healthy Schools Now and Justis Brown a junior at International High School in Paterson and a graduate of the Healthy Schools Now Student Leadership Academy.

Best Wishes and Thank You to Jerell Blakeley

Jerell Blakely, WEC Campaign Organizer for Healthy Schools Now tendered his resignation to pursue another opportunity and will be leaving the end of the month. Under his leadership, the Healthy Schools Now (HSN) coalition grew by more than 20 organizations. He published eight opinion-editorials on subjects ranging from extreme heat and unhealthy conditions in the classrooms to challenging former Governor Christies school funding formula and bringing attention to violence in schools. He was also quoted in numerous press outlets about the need for healthy school facilities in New Jersey for all students and staff while emphasizing action must be taken to address inequalities in SDA (formerly Abbott) Districts. Jerell also conducting a successful pilot project, HSN Leadership Academy that graduated twenty-one students from Paterson and Trenton. 

The WEC Board and staff thank Jerell for his work and wish him the best.
Become a Member
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Take Action

People's Climate March
Rise for Climate, Justice and Jobs
Saturday, September 8
11am - 2pm
Morristown Town Hall
200 South Street
Morristown, NJ

Energy Master Plan 
Stakeholder Hearings
More details here

1. Clean and Renewable Power
Friday, September 7 @ 10am
The College of NJ
Gitenstein Library
2000 Pennington Rd. 
Ewing, NJ

2. Reducing Energy Consumption
Friday, September 14 @ 10 am
The College of NJ
Gitenstein Library
2000 Pennington Rd. 
Ewing, NJ

3. Clean and Reliable Transportation
Thursday, September 20 @ 10am
The College of NJ
Gitenstein Library
2000 Pennington Rd. 
Ewing, NJ

4. Building a Modern Grid
Monday, September 24 @ 10am
Mercer County Community College
Conference Center at Mercer
1200 Old Trenton Road
West Windsor, NJ

5. Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure
Friday, September 28 @ 10am
Mercer County Community College

1200 Old Trenton Road
West Windsor, NJ

WEC Annual Awards Dinner
Friday, November 30
6pm - 9 pm 
The College of New Jersey
Individuals and organizations can join WEC & you may 
pay for your membership online.

New year, new membership. 
Please consider joining in 2018!
Prevent Silica Exposure
Newsletter September 2018
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