Original Date: 09/14/1998
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Unified Community Advisory Board
Prior to 1995, the community’s voice was primarily heard in an adversarial manner through local neighborhood meetings, newspaper articles, and the electronic media. This practice created an atmosphere which destroyed open communications and trust among regulatory agencies, industry, and the community. Media coverage also reflected this mistrust and misunderstanding by reporting negative articles 75% of the time throughout the 1980s. In 1995, Raytheon Missile Systems Company (RMSC) created the Unified Community Advisory Board (UCAB) as a way for the community to express its concerns, values, and opinions in a positive and constructive manner.
UCAB is a unique outreach program which involves and empowers the local community as major stakeholders in environmental decisions. These stakeholders (the general public, community activists, University of Arizona, Tucson International Airport, the Air Force, and RMSC) work together to resolve issues, and participate in the clean- up process at the RMSC plant site, including much of the Tucson International Airport Area Superfund Site. UCAB’s value is evident in the stakeholders’ synergy and focus on their common goal of environmental restoration. The stakeholders have been instrumental in implementing major environmental initiatives in record time. The advisory board has significantly reduced the startup times of many projects, often by as much as three years.
Through UCAB, RMSC provides training and awareness sessions at local middle schools, high schools, and colleges. The company is also involved in curricula at two universities and a local community college. The students from these institutions perform fieldwork at RMSC to learn about the company’s commitment to environmental stewardship, and to gain valuable first-hand knowledge on Superfund site clean-up efforts.
Since its implementation, UCAB improved communication and trust among the local constituents, and reversed negative reports about RMSC’s operations. Consequently, the company enjoys positive media coverage 85% of the time. UCAB also enables regulatory agencies, industry, and the community to openly discuss issues, devise action plans, and make a difference in environmental and clean-up efforts.
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Point of Contact for this survey.