Environmental Injustices Experienced by Immigrants in a High-Rise Neighbourhood: Examining Conditions, Impacts, and Advocacy at Multiple Scales
thesisposted on 23.05.2021, 13:32 by Emily Lauren Brown
Low income, racialized, immigrant populations often experience inequitable exposure to hazardous housing and neighbourhood environments, while being excluded from decision-making processes that shape environmental changes in these spaces. While such trends have been documented in several locations, few studies explore the issue in-depth, from the perspective of the lived experiences of immigrants and newcomers facing substandard conditions across a variety of scales. Drawing on focus groups with immigrants living in the high-rise neighbourhood of Rexdale, Toronto and key informant interviews with social service agencies, this thesis examines how unjust environmental living conditions manifest across multiple scales (i.e. housing unit, high-rise building, high-rise neighbourhood) resulting in cumulative impacts and challenges. A procedural environmental justice lens is adopted to examine weather and how immigrants and newcomers are engaging in processes to improve their living conditions at a variety of scales, related obstacles and barriers, and opportunities for increasing immigrant influence over environmental conditions.