South Chickamauga Creek Greenway
Michael Daniels, left, and Sam Gibson walk on a wooden walkway on the South Chickamauga Creek Greenway between the Lost Mound Trailhead and Hawthorne Trailhead on Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2020, in Chattanooga, Tenn.
Doug Strickland

On Election Day, voters overwhelmingly backed parks and open spaces

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A record number of Americans, estimated at nearly 160 million, went to the polls to make their voices heard. This past week's election, while at times exhausting, has left me inspired for the work ahead. We at The Trust for Public Land are eager to take on the most pressing challenges facing our communities. Our movement to create equal access to the outdoors gained tremendous steam over the past four years, and we are more committed than ever to keep the momentum going in the years to come to ensure that every person has access to parks and the irreplaceable benefits they provide.

We look forward to working with President-elect Biden and other leaders in his administration to bring the benefits of the outdoors to everyone. We were proud to work with Vice President-elect Harris when she introduced the Outdoors for All Act to help ensure that everyone has a quality park within a 10-minute walk of home. As a leader in outdoor equity, we look forward to continuing that work with her on park, equity, and health issues.

ca_bradley_green_alley_08292020_007Bradley Green Alley, Los AngelesPhoto credit: Joe Sorrentino

The pandemic shows that our work is more important than ever. Parks and public lands have become essential places for people to connect, exercise, learn, and relax. But today, over 100 million people in the U.S., including 28 million children, do not have a quality park or green space within a 10-minute walk of home. Even where parks exist, they may not meet communities’ needs: our recent analysis shows that parks serving primarily nonwhite populations are half the size of parks that serve majority white populations and serve five times more people per acre.

That’s why The Trust for Public Land is leading a coalition of 100 community and environmental organizations to call on Congress to include a one-time investment of $500 million for close-to-home parks in any future coronavirus stimulus bill.

And it’s why The Trust for Public Land Action Fund helped organize campaigns for 26 park and open space funding measures this election season. This week, voters approved all of these measures, generating almost $3 billion in new public funding for parks, trails, wildlife, farmland, clean water, and open spaces. Since 1996, Trust for Public Land supporters have helped generate over $80 billion for conservation at the polls. This overwhelming success, powered by voters of all political persuasions, shows how our common commitment to public land can help bridge the divides in our nation. Learn about more ways the outdoors bring us together at tpl.org/parks-unite-us.

Now that this election has been decided, the path forward is clear: we must reunite to address the climate, equity, and health challenges that threaten so many of our fellow Americans. We couldn't move our mission forward without your support. Thank you for standing with The Trust for Public Land as we work to create stronger communities for all.

Comments

Phyllis Ohlstein
Public land is a treasure to be shared and enjoyed by everyone
Bonnie DeClark
with over population becoming more and more of a problem, protecting open land is very important. I'm very active in protecting public land in Marin Country which has resulted in the purchase of open land.
R. Michael Ehr
These lands belong to all citizens and the Government is the caretaker for this trust. They must never be used to enrich wealthy campaign contributors. These lands should be considered sacred and iron clad laws must be put in place so politicians fully realize that they are working for"us" and not their corporate donors.
Donald Betts
These BEAUTIFUL PARKS and LANDS MUST be PROTECTED !
Margaret Traina
These parks and lands are so important to our health in every way. They nurture us physically, psychologically, mentally and emotionally and they support us socially as a society. Without them we would be very much impoverished in so many ways.
Amy Kirkwood
Please fight to keep oil and gas out if Alaska public lands! Thank you
Rosemary V.E. REVOIR
BEAUTIFUL lands and wildfire, which are also great education and appreciation for all who visit. A great Thank you for Rangers and all that take care of them. Copying Michael Ehrn's comment, which I fully agree of. These lands belong to all citizens and the Government is the caretaker for this trust. They must never be used to enrich wealthy campaign contributors. These lands should be considered sacred and iron clad laws must be put in place so politicians fully realize that they are working for"us" and not their corporate donors.
jane hillhouse
So lets get support for natural burial on beautiful "protected in perpituity" land. No cement grave liners, no plastic ornaments, or large tomb stones. Just beautiful natural land with trees and bushes, etc. Google them and you will be amazed. no mowing, no grass, just all natural. Biodegradable caskets or no caskets. Contact www.FinalFootprint.com or call 650 892 2515.
Carol Whalen
Keep our parks and wilderness free from drilling, fracting, and killing animal;s.
Rudy Zeller
All of us should have access to experience the beauty, peace and wonder of our natural world!
Mark Fox Sr
These parks of any scale are a benefit to mankind and should be maintained and protected from those who would exploit them for monetary gain.
Linda S Padgett
Our parks are sacred places and must be protected and preserved.
kathy White
Love our public lands, parks, and open space. It has saved me this past year during the pandemic!
Gerald Nelson
As a retired Parks and Recreation Professional, I have faith in the American voter to do the right thing. Leisure Services are so vital in this world of the virus.

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