UpZones #27: Aiko Schaefer

Upisode 27: A new season! Aiko Schaefer has worked for 20 years to promote economic justice and elect good people to office; she stopped by the bookstore to chat with Ian and discuss Ballot Initiative 1631, the most ambitious climate policy advanced since the Obama Administration left office. They discussed organizing, living in Indiana, and the false narrative that says identity politics the environment are at odds.

About Aiko Schaefer

A longtime faculty member at the University of Washington, Aiko Schaefer leads Front and Centered, a Washington-statewide coalition of organizations and groups rooted in communities of color and people with lower incomes on the frontlines of economic and environmental change.  She was formerly Communications Director for the Washington State Budget & Policy Center and Founding Executive Director of the Statewide Poverty Action Network.  Across all her roles, she describes herself as “a community organizer,” looking to highlight in both her writing and advocacy the ways in which policy issues impact real people with real stories.

Aiko, as part of YesOn1631, is currently leading the push to approve Washington Ballot Initiative 1631, an initiative to reduce pollution by investing in clean air, clean energy, clean water, healthy forests, and healthy communities by imposing a fee on large emitters based on their pollution.  The initiative would, if it passes, be the first such carbon fee ever passed by initiative, a rebuke against the specious claim that climate mitigation measures aren’t popular.

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