The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will postpone a training that is part of a series on “Structural Racism and Environmental Justice” following President Donald Trump’s order for federal agencies to cease critical race theory trainings, Politico reported.
The series reportedly focused on “how addressing structural racism is indeed highly relevant to EPA’s mission and key to advancing the integration of [environmental justice]. The series will feature groundbreaking cutting-edge work in ways to better advance [environmental justice] by addressing structural racism,” according to Politico.
The speaker series would have been held Tuesday afternoon for all EPA staff. EPA official Charles Lee cited a White House directive from Sept. 4 when announcing the postponement, which ordered all federal agencies to end critical race theory trainings.
Russ Vought, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, was directed by Trump to ensure that all federal agencies cease and desist from holding critical race theory trainings, which have included mandatory sessions for white employees in which they are tasked with recognizing their role in perpetuating racism.
“These types of ‘trainings’ not only run counter to the fundamental beliefs for which our Nation has stood since its inception, they also engender division and resentment within the Federal workforce,” the statement announcing the directive said. (RELATED: ‘Anti-American Propaganda’: Trump Administration To End Critical Race Theory Training At Federal Agencies)
The decision to order federal agencies to cease and desist from critical race theory trainings case after leaked documents showed that Sandia National Laboratories, a federal lab, reportedly hosted a three-day mandatory training for its white male executives where they were instructed to apologize for their privilege, along with other tasks such as acknowledging the connection between “white male culture” and mass killings.
Democratic lawmakers rebuked the Trump administration for ending the trainings and accused the president of dismissing the country’s racism.
“In the middle of a national reckoning on racial injustice, the Trump administration is trying to sweep our nation’s history of racism under the rug,” the statement by multiple Democratic lawmakers said.
The EPA’s speaker series comes after Administrator Andrew Wheeler expressed his vision for a second Trump term that included an emphasis on environmental justice.