The Kairos Center Presents:
Moral Policy in a Time of Crisis
DAY 2: SATURDAY, OCTOBER 24
The Right to Health and a Healthy Environment
Building power to change a death-dealing system into one that protects the sources of life, with:
Brigitte Kahl is Professor of New Testament/Bible at Union Theological Seminary in New York and an ordained minister of the Protestant Church of Berlin Brandenburg. A native of East Germany, she studied and taught at Humboldt University in Berlin until 1997. She reads the Bible empire-critically as a book of resilience, resistance and liberation, with a specific focus on Genesis, Luke and Paul. Poverty, social injustice, racism, sexism and eco-imperialism are major topics of her work.
Mikaela Curry (she/her) is a community organizer, environmental scientist and poet. She holds advanced degrees in biological sciences and has worked as an environmental specialist, consultant, conservationist, and researcher. She served on the steering committee for Kentuckians For The Commonwealth and has been active in the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival since it started its first season of direct action in 2018.
Nijmie Zakkiyyah Dzurinko is a working class Black, Indigenous and queer organizer and strategist of over 20 years from Pennsylvania. She is co-founder and co-coordinator on a volunteer basis of Put People First! PA, a statewide, base building human rights organization waging a healthcare is a human right campaign. They are also volunteer co-chair of the Pennsylvania Poor People’s Campaign and a member of the National Steering Committee. Nijmie serves on the Executive Board of the National Union of the Homeless and is also a member of the University of the Poor and the Popular Education Project.
- Read more from Nijmie: “From Elections to Politics“
Noam Sandweiss-Back is the Program Coordinator at the Kairos Center and Director of Partnerships for the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival.
Dr. Sharrelle Barber is a scholar-activist whose research examines the role of structural racism in shaping health and racial/ethnic health inequities among Blacks in the Southern United States and Brazil. Deeply rooted in the rich legacy of “Black Women Radicals” from the South, the legacy of activism of her beloved alma mater, Bennett College, and experiences that have taken her to cities across the United States and Brazil, Dr. Barber seeks to use empirical research and scholarship to make the invisible visible and mobilize data for action.
Sharon Lavigne is a resident of Louisiana who lives and owns property in the predominantly African-American Fifth District of St. James Parish, which is heavily pervaded by pipelines and petrochemical facilities, including tank farms. Lavigne is also founder and president of RISE St. James, a grassroots, faith-based organization dedicated to opposing the siting of new petrochemical facilities in the area out of concern for the worsening health effects and environmental pollution from industry in the area.
Basav Sen joined the Institute for Policy Studies as the Climate Justice Project Director in February 2017. His work focuses on climate solutions at the national, state, and local level that address racial, economic, gender and other forms of inequality. Prior to joining IPS, Basav worked for about 11 years as a strategic corporate campaign researcher at the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW). He has also had experience as a campaigner on the World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), and global finance and trade issues.