Photo of Jina Kim

Jina Kim

  • Hosted by Communities for a Better Environment
  • Sponsored by The Clorox Company
  • Service location Oakland, California
  • Law school University of California, Berkeley School of Law
  • Issue area Environmental Justice, Racial Justice
  • Fellowship class year 2021
  • Program Design Your Own Fellowship

The Project

Jina (she/her/hers) will advocate with low-income residents of color in East Oakland, California for environmental justice and community resilience through direct representation, education, and policy implementation.

Racial justice and environmental justice are inextricably linked. Amidst current crises like the racial disparities of the COVID-19 pandemic are the persistent crises in environmental justice communities like East Oakland—pollution, poverty, and more—which are exacerbated by climate change and an extractive economy that prioritizes industry profits over residents’ health. In such globally challenging times, East Oakland is also grappling with how its future will look and who will control its fate, as it encounters challenges like unreliable energy, serious respiratory health issues, and displacement.

Low-income residents of color in East Oakland need a comprehensive response that will build community resilience, capacity, and self-determination, supporting their self-empowerment toward a more just and sustainable future.

Fellowship Plans

During her Fellowship, Jina will represent the community in proceedings regarding California’s energy portfolio and implement a microgrid in the community. She will work with residents to develop a community benefits agreement to prevent displacement and to support local economic development. She will also develop educational materials on wildfire preparedness and other environmental health issues of interest to the community.

During the beginning of my family's story in America, we struggled to survive in a foreign place with no voice and no power. These early experiences taught me the importance of listening to and amplifying the voices of people who our society often silences, and motivated my decision to pursue community lawyering.

Jina Kim /
2021 Equal Justice Works Fellow

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