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Organizers Say Urban Agriculture Is Not Just a Hobby, It’s an Act of Resilience

Steffanie Tulk fills an order for customer Susan Burkhardt on October 23, 2020, at Village Farmstand in Evanston, Illinois. Chris Sweda / Chicago Tribune/

When folks think that urban ag has a white face and it’s a hobby, that does a disservice to all of the communities that have started urban gardens as an act of resilience and a way to feed themselves.

By Laura Flanders,
Jan 6, 2021


Kirtrina Baxter: I would say about roughly 80 percent of our gardens and farms in this city are insecure, which means that they don’t have legal access to the land. So they might be on the land without permission, they may have a lease or a license, but they don’t have legal permission to be there, and what happened in this city — because gentrification picked up, development picked up the last two years — places where folks had been gardening for over, sometimes 30 years, are being [pushed out] … we knew that we had to do something to stop that.

Baxter: And it always has been. So, like the reality of this movement is that it’s shining light on the fact that people have been growing food in community and cities and urban spaces for decades, and a lot of those people look like me and a lot of people look like you because that’s how it’s always been. And so, because very recently, white folks have gotten more involved in doing the thing, all of a sudden there’s a white face on what’s happening, but we’ve been effectively changing that narrative within the city here, which has been a great boon for us, I think, and for the growers.

Read the complete article here.