Social Workers for Environmental Justice

Mission Statement: The goals of SWEJ are (1) to raise awareness on environmental issues and the green movement, (2) to inspire students to take action to improve our environment, and (3) to discuss the intersection between environmental issues and social justice.
Description of Organization:Our caucus is all about making a measurable change on campus and in our community. If you are interested in bringing more local food to USC, expanding/improving urban green spaces, bettering our school's recycling program or doing something else that is environmental justice related, please contact us. We are looking for people who are interested in taking on a leadership role as well as those who are just looking to make the world a better place. We are not hippies. Please contact for more info.                 
Current Eco-initiatives: We are currently looking to equip the School of Social Work Gabilan Courtyard with two easily recognizable recycling bins (which include spots for plastic, glass and paper); We would like to work with the Office of Hospitality to fill out Real Food Challenge’s Baseline Assessment of USC’s food system in order to see how to increase the buying and selling of “real food”; We are going to the South Central Farmers’ Cooperative on February 4 to better understand our local and national food systems to spark an advocacy campaign for a fair Farm Bill. 
Past Eco-Accomplishments:  Our Local Foods Night included catered snacks from South L.A. based youth empowerment non-profit, RootDown L.A. and an outdoor documentary screening of “The Garden”; We also brought RootDown L.A. on campus to give a presentation on our broken food systems and a “You’re-gonna-eat-your-veggies!” cooking demonstration; We co-sponsored an event with the Jewish Social Work Caucus that brought the CEO of MAZON to campus to discuss the new face of hunger; We had two Farmers’ Market Awareness Days where we gave out lists of local farmers’ markets and free tote bags (to people who promised to fill them with produce from farmers markets); We connected with Real Food Challenge to brainstorm ways to bring more community-based food on campus. 
Eco-Goals for the Future: More ethical, local food on campus (according to Hospitality Services, we are at 6%); Better recycling on campus including bins with separate sections for paper, plastic and glass; More green space in the surrounding community.
Find out more information at
Meetings: Tuesdays and Saturdays (email for exact times and locations)
Current organization leaders:                 
Chair: Julia Palmquist (, 2013)
Co-Chair: Daniel Lyman (, 2014)
Treasurer: Diane Yaris (, 2014)
Secretary: Alicia Martinez (, 2014)
# of Members:   15
What are the obligations of members?: To attend meetings (when possible) and to actively engage in brainstorming as well as implementation of our goals.