Essential Pittsburgh
2:29 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Finding the Value of Agriculture in Communities of Color

LaTasha Mayes is Founder and Executive Director of New Voices Pittsburgh: Women of Color for Reproductive Justice
LaTasha Mayes is Founder and Executive Director of New Voices Pittsburgh: Women of Color for Reproductive Justice
Credit Heather McClain / 90.5 WESA

Today marks the beginning of the 6th annual Kinks, Locks & Twists: Environmental and Reproductive Justice conference.

New Voices Pittsburgh: Women of Color for Reproductive Justice coordinates the event and facilitates conversations on health, wellness, and the environment as they pertain to communities of color.

LaTasha Mayes, Founder and Executive Director of New Voices Pittsburgh discussed the evolution of the conference and its connection to the community over the years.

Ashlee Davis, Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Civil Rights for the USDA, is one of the guest speakers for the conference. Davis will be discussing the civil rights division of the USDA, food justice and how it relates to communities of color.

Davis believes young people could be more interested in agriculture once they understand all of the opportunities and benefits.

“This is an opportunity not just a business enterprise but agriculture is something that is essentially at the foundation and roots at all of our families. It offers us an opportunity not just to engage and innovate but also to turn the whole concept of ag [agriculture] upside down on its head and show what’s really cool about having a sustainable livelihood, something that you create, being able to produce and give back to your community and quite frankly also knowing the source of your food and insuring the integrity of what you’re eating and what you’re providing to your family. That’s something, I think, that resonates whether you’re 28 or 80, quite frankly.”