Thank you for allowing our statements to be heard. We are heartened that an Environmental Justice office will be added to the process of deciding about projects that impact the environment thereby our health and happiness. More importantly, that the DEQ is committed to transparency and inclusiveness moving forward. To really get public input, you must make sure the meetings are held during times that community members can attend and make public when those meetings are - and allow for various ways for people to participate, e.g., facilitate meaningful participation in all relevant languages, take public comment online, hold meetings that are accessible to public transporation, make sure you are seeking diverse voices to be included in studies, presentations, and impacted communities have a voice in the process.
Moving forward, we must make sure that public participation is accessible, inclusive and meaningful in order to ensure environmental justice for all Virginians.