Meet the Chemical Entanglements Speakers: Nourbese Flint

CSW’s Chemical Entanglements Symposium takes place on May 4 & 5. Registration is free and open to all!

Nourbese Flint, the policy director of Black Women for Wellness (BWW) works at both the micro and macro levels of California’s society to address both the causes and symptoms of chemical exposures in, environmental racism towards, and the social marginalization of Black women and women of color. At the intersection of environment and reproductive justice, the kind of empowerment that Flint works towards is all-encompassing and ranges from personal shopping choices, for example, to working with government representatives and effecting change in policy. She has a guiding hand not only the reproductive health work pioneered by BWW, but also in the organization’s education and community advocacy work and in their co-sponsoring and authoring of statewide policies supporting equitable access to prenatal care and abortions to low-income women and families. Similarly, BWW’s publications on the socially and historically important, yet chemically hazardous, Black hair product industry–publications that are impactful in their imagery, their direct conveyance of information with consideration for social context, and their offering of alternatives for natural hair care products–demonstrate the influence of Flint’s work. Through the clarity of her work, which largely focuses on South LA, it becomes clear that the solution to historic marginalization–which has resulted in Black hair products not being tested for toxic chemicals, for example–is support for Black women’s empowerment on all levels. Flint is also the head of civic engagement with Californians and Green Economy (CHANGE), where she strategizes and designs efforts to “build power and address toxic chemicals as it relates to reproductive health through elections, legislative efforts and community politics.”

For more on BWW’s co-sponsorship of reproductive policy, see:

For BWW’s publications, see:

Profile by Winter Rae Schneider