Community Voices

Lorena Chavez has been involved with EHC since 2005, mostly because she lives in Old Town, where industry is mixed with residential land uses. This inappropriate zoning affects the health of the families living in Lorena’s neighborhood, since most of the industry there consists of auto body and paint shops. For Lorena, protecting the health of her three children is most important. She participated in the implementation of the Old Town Specific Plan, which changed the land use for this area. The plan, approved in 2010 by the National City City Council, will no longer allow polluting industries into the community. Lorena has also participated in the Healthy Homes program, showing families how to make their homes toxin-free and energy efficient. She has been an active National City Community Action Team member and wants to continue being involved in making positive changes in her community.

— Lorena Chavez, EHC Member

“Where we live determines how we live and also how long we’ll live. If we’re surrounded by industrial facilities that impact our health, it shortens our life span and plays havoc with our kids’ life span. If people have jobs and are able to take care of themselves, have clean water, clean air, and a decent place to live, they have better outcomes all around. Everybody deserves that.”

— Mrs. Mary Curry, chair of Concerned Citizens of West Fresno 

“My vision is to have Green Zones, clean streets, clean air, and healthy quality of life. For that reason, I set a goal to connect my community and inform them of how their voice has power to support housing and the environment. Let everyone hear my voice!”

— Mercedes De La Torre


“I am a sister, friend, and student who loves her community. I study at Richmond High School and am a part of debate, choir, and Youth for Environmental Justice. I got involved with CBE because I believe in equity, including income, affordable housing, education, access to healthy foods, safe streets, and everyone getting together to fight for what is right. I’ve really enjoyed going on marches because I feel the most passionate when everyone is together and standing up for justice in their communities.”

— Isabella Gallegos