Toward TomorrowToward Tomorrow

The Common Agenda — Goal 5

Shared Responsibility
for Environmental Justice

One generation from now, there is a spirit of shared responsibility for respecting, protecting, and fulfilling the Universal Declaration of Human Rights: no person is kept from living a healthy, active and meaningful life by poor environmental and social conditions beyond his or her control, and groups of people are not at higher risk of environmental threats to health by virtue of their race, gender, or economic status. There is an understanding that human health is interdependent with the health of the environment and that part of our shared responsibility is to ensure that ecosystems are healthy and intact, allowing all life on the planet to thrive.


A Healthy Environment is an Essential Human Right

Relevant federal, state and municipal policies and programs, as well as individual actions, seek to respect, protect and fulfill the rights of humans and other species to a healthy environment. Eliminating disparities in environmental exposures and restoring ecosystems are seen as essential functions of a transparent and responsive government and an open and responsible private sector. A healthy environment is affirmatively established as a Constitutional right.

Objective 2

People Share Responsibility for Ensuring the Viability of All Species

U.S. residents value the rich diversity of life on earth. They understand that protecting habitats and species preserves some of the most basic building blocks of our economies and societies. Federal, state and local agencies share a culture of conservation that informs planning decisions and regulatory structures.

Objective 3

Safe Work with Fair Compensation is Respected, Protected and Fulfilled as an Essential Human Right

Relevant federal, state and municipal policies respect, protect, and fulfill the rights of all adults to employment that provides a living wage, a safe working environment, and opportunities for personal advancement. Reductions in income disparities between the top 1% of the population and the remaining 99% contribute to a stronger economy.

Objective 4

U.S. Residents are Active and Effective Participants in Decision-making

Information needed to understand environmental conditions and health consequences is widely available and accessible to all communities and interest groups. Public participation in decision-making processes of agencies and other organizations responsible for protecting environmental and public health is considered a civic duty, embraced, supported and facilitated by government, and validated by transparent processes that are accountable to the public. Participation in decision-making by vulnerable people and those who have not been able to participate previously—because of discrimination or disenfranchisement—is strongly encouraged and fairly compensated.