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It’s time to learn about 5th & Hill

October 29, 2020

 

Dear UIUC Community,

 

 

There's a public health crisis happening just 12 minutes away from the engineering quad where, in the middle of the community, locates what used to be a manufacturing gas plant. Upon its closing in the 50’s, nothing was done to remediate the site. Therefore, the site remains, ‘til this day, a hazardous zone in the middle of the community. Ameren, a power company who now owns the site, only wants to remediate the site location further neglecting its spread into the surrounding majority low-income black neighborhood. This has led to rare diseases, severe internal bleedings, and a list of other unforeseen medical conditions in the community. The Fifth and Hill community continues to suffer from environmental racism, gaslighting, and potential genocide under the neglect of Ameren. Even now, the company continues to denounce that there is spreading of toxins in which their own data disproves. A community that holds a safe home for survivors of domestic violence, that houses many elders, and provides daycares should not be subject to any of these inhumane conditions.

 

Today at 6pm via zoom, Bsfr, CCHCC and ISG will be hosting a teach-in on the conditions of 5th & Hill. As the COVID-19 pandemic is currently happening, we assume for good reasons that the 5th & Hill community can become more vulnerable due to the withstanding respiratory diseases that the toxic site brings. The goal of the teach-in is to inform students about the 5th & Hill community. We are also recruiting students, because we need students to go door to door canvassing to tell the community about information they may not know about as new residents have moved into the community. Lastly, we are looking for any individuals that can help with the testing kits analysis.

 

Here is a twitter thread by BSFR that tells more in depth about the conditions of 5th & Hill. Here is the link to the zoom teach-in. If you are not able to make it to this one today, there will be multiple teach-in events to tell more about 5th & Hill. Below is a flyer as well, the best way you can support 5th & Hill at the moment is to share the flyer below, as well as our gofundme. If you want to get more involved, here are a couple more suggestions from me to you:

 

  • Contact CCHCC through their website to get on the email list to attend 5th & Hill meetings.

  • Encourage your RSO, Department, friends or family to learn about 5th & Hill and join the ongoing fight community members have been facing.

  • Contact Black Students for Revolution (BSFR) for more information on any pending questions. Bsfruiuc@gmail.com

 

The 5th & Hill community has been fighting for this long undering fight against environmental racist for over a decade. As students, faculty, and participants of the University of Illinois system, it is our responsibility to use our privilege, as we are a part of the hyper gentrification which overshadows surrounding community issues. More particularly, I am calling on Black students to get involved, as this is one of the many communities that took us in when the University of Illinois was denying us proper residency on their campus. Research more info on Project 500 for the historical reference to this. Black Students for Revolution hope to see the campus and inhabitants of the campus use their strengths, resources, and time to not only better the 5th & Hill community, but any surrounding community that struggles near a “prestigious” multi-billion dollar university such as the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. 

 

Peace,

Dimitri

 

 

 

 

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