"Plants have been concentrated in mostly Black communities, lawsuit says".
"St. James Parish community groups are calling for a ban on new petrochemical plants to halt what they say is a history of racist land use decisions that have concentrated polluting industries in Black neighborhoods, according to a federal lawsuit.
Filed on Tuesday in the U.S. Eastern District Court in New Orleans, the lawsuit claims that parish officials have “intentionally chosen to locate over a dozen enormous industrial facilities in the majority Black 4th and 5th Districts, while explicitly sparing White residents from the risk of environmental harm.”
The lawsuit calls for what would be the state’s first ban on petrochemical plants, said Pam Spees, an attorney representing the plaintiffs, including Rise St. James, Inclusive Louisiana and Mt. Triumph Baptist Church of Chatman Town.
“Over and over, St. James Parish has ignored our cries for basic human rights,” said Shamyra Lavigne of Rise. “Enough is enough.”"
Tristan Baurick reports for the New Orleans Times-Picayune March 21, 2023.