Friday, June 29, 2018

Poor People's Campaign Protest at the National Mall

Reposted from American Human Rights Council

[Saturday, June 23, 2018, Washington DC] On a sad and gloomy day, people from across the United States converged at the National Mall in Washington DC to share the conditions and misery citizens of the richest country in the world suffer from. The Poor People's Campaign's (PPC) peaceful march in DC is the culmination of a 40-day protests and civil disobedience across the country in front of dozens of States' capitol protesting against poverty, militarism, systemic racism, voting rights, and ending mass incriminations among other noble causes.

Imam Mustapha Elturk of the Islamic Organization of North America (IONA) and AHRC founding board member and William Antoun, IONA's Outreach Director, joined a group of 48 people from Michigan, organized by the Michigan's PPC chapter and Michigan Coalition for Human Rights, to take part in the historic 50th anniversary of the Poor People's Campaign originated by the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King in DC. Among the 48 people was activist Lila Cabbil aka mam Lila, a close friend of Rosa Parks.
The protest marks 50 years since "Resurrection City," when nearly 150,000 people came to the Poor People's Campaign in 1968 with many religious leaders and activists from all over the country who camped out on the National Mall for six weeks to protest against poverty, show solidarity and gain attention to their cause.

Many clergy, community leaders, and activists shared the stage to address the thousands of people assembled on the Mall. Many of the victims also related their stories and shared their sorrow and grief as a result of the government's oppression and lack of moral conscience.

The gathering was a call for action. The 50-year anniversary of the PPC marks the beginning of a "Moral uprising across America" according to the Reverend William Barber who leads the PPC movement. In his speech, he made sure that the audience understands that they were not there to celebrate an anniversary and that, "This is not a commemoration of what happened 50 years ago. This is a reenactment and re-inauguration."

Clergy from different religious backgrounds quoted social justice verses from their respective holy books. At 2:00 PM the protesters, blacks, whites, browns, young and old, were led by Rev. Barber and those who took to the stage in a march down on Independence Avenue to the U.S. Capitol and back to the National Mall. The Capitol was barricaded with police officers and security guards.

Commenting on the rally in Washington DC, Imam Elturk said, "It is a privilege for me to stand in solidarity with clergy among other people of conscience fighting for the rights of the vulnerable and poor people as well as mother earth's ecological devastation." "There are many injustices that are not being deservedly addressed by our government and mass media. Therefore, a mass popular movement such as the Poor People's Campaign, is the answer to bringing the deserved attention to the power that be," he continued. He wonders, "This is America. Why should anyone live a life of misery?"

Imam Elturk did join along with other clergy and activists the Poor People's Campaign's rally and protest at the state capital building in Lansing on May 14, the day following Mother's day, marking the first day of the 40-day protests across the country. Commenting on that event, Imam Elturk said, "It is amazing how much injustice is taking place right here in our backyard, in America, the richest and most powerful country in the world." He urged that "We, as people of conscience and people of faith, must put pressure on our government through peaceful means including civil disobedience when necessary to change the status quo." As believers, Imam Elturk believes that, "This is our calling. It is our religious and moral responsibility to support The Poor People's Campaign."

The Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, originated in 1968 and organized by Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC), and carried out under the leadership of Ralph Abernathy in the wake of King's assassination. The campaign demanded economic and human rights for poor Americans of diverse backgrounds. The revival started two years ago with reaching out to tens of thousands of Americans in more than 30 states and surveying their conditions and getting testimonies of their stories and their demands for a more just society. The surveys and studies were put together in a report titled The Souls of Poor Folk: Auditing America [1] and it reveals how the evils of systemic racism, poverty, ecological devastation, and the war economy and militarism are persistent, pervasive, and perpetuated by a distorted moral narrative that must be challenged. The campaign seeks to address all of these issues with lists of specific demands.
The Poor Peoples Campaign (PPC): A National Call for Moral Revival! Demands the following:
*           A massive overhaul of the nation's voting rights laws
*           New programs to lift up the 140 million Americans living in poverty.
*           Immediate attention to ecological devastation.
*           Measures to curb militarism and the war economy.
To learn more and get involved please visit

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Riding the MI bus to DC: an activist-journalist's experience

In this personal story from Dawn R. Wolfe, she provides another great account of what it looks like and means to be a part of the Poor People's Campaign. Dawn is one of over 50 participants in the Michigan PPC who rode to Washington DC on June 22 for a national rally and march the next day. She documents the journey of this all-volunteer and diverse delegation and how impactful it was for many members of this delegation.
What was different is that we also had artists, musicians, and individuals running the economic gamut from struggling single moms to comfortably middle-class people like myself. There were also a lot of first-time demonstrators like Heather, a 40-something mom from Monroe who sat across the isle from me on both legs of the trip.
Geographically we were from all over Michigan; from Muskegon to Detroit and Washington Township to Flint. While not everyone mentioned a religious affiliation, it was impossible to miss the number of clerical collars being affixed to shirts as we got ready to disembark — not to mention Imam Steve Mustapha Elturk, a Novi resident and leader of the Islamic Organization of North America’s Warren mosque.
You can read the full story of this memorable experience at

Friday, June 22, 2018

This Monday at the Poor People's Campaign

A blog post reposted from Detroit Jews for Justice
by Miriam Lupovitch
June 21, 2018

This past Monday I had the privilege of taking part in the Poor People’s Campaign in Detroit, the last of this spring’s 40 days of Moral Action. 

This was my first experience with this type of action. Surrounded by people flooding the streets of downtown Detroit, so committed to racial and economic justice, I was deeply inspired to be a part of this community.  A priest offered a blessing to all the folks taking part in the action. He asked everyone to reach out and touch the person in front of them. I touched the shoulder of a kind older woman in front of me, she turned back to me and smiled. I think she knew I felt out of my comfort zone. Her warm look comforted me as the priest offered his blessings for all of us. My favorite part of his blessing was the call and response. When he said, “We’re going to speak when the spirit says,” we called out, “Speak!” When he said, “We’re going to shout when the spirit says,” we called out, “Shout!” When he said, “We’re going to act when the spirit says,” we called out, “Act!”

I got chills when the people around me all shouted the final word of each sentence. The energy of that moment stuck with me as we walked to Campus Martius, where "moral witnesses" climbed into the fountain to reclaim water in honor of those who don’t have access to clean water. They distributed the fountain's water to buckets labeled with different cities in Michigan facing a water crisis. As the people around me were taking action, I could hear the priests words’ in my head, calling me to act. 

Please see Detroit action video at

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Reporting on a powerful final day of 40 days of action in Detroit

To learn more about the Michigan Poor People's Campaign, please read this terrific article on the first-hand experience of a participant journalist, Dawn R. Wolfe.

In an article entitled, "The Mustard Plant Comes Into Bloom: Michigan Poor People’s Campaign Takes the Movement to Duggan, Gilbert," Dawn vibrantly describes what she witnessed and concluded on the last day of 40 days of action in Detroit. Here's an example:
Yesterday, I personally witnessed a 400-plus-strong gathering of activists as they burst into a mighty, confidence-filled crowd ready to take on the forces that are endangering poor people in the city of Detroit. From Central United Methodist Church to the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department, and then on to Campus Martius and blocking the QLine at Woodward and Michigan Ave., poor people — and their allies throughout the state — put those in power on notice.

Before setting off to take action in the streets, the Michigan Poor People’s Campaign (PPC) first came together at Central United Methodist Church for what had become the traditional pre-action rally. Monday’s speakers included the Rev. Dr. Jill Hardt Zundel, Central United’s senior pastor, and the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization’s (MWRO) State Chair, Maureen Taylor.

But Monday’s pre-action rally also had something different — a memorial service for Gordon Leon King, a formerly homeless person who had been receiving support from the Central United community. While the rally’s speeches and protest songs helped cut through the sticky heat, there is nothing like mourning a human being’s death by state-sanctioned poverty to illustrate just why the Michigan Poor People’s Campaign has been taking to the streets.
Read the full story at:

Monday, June 18, 2018

WDIV: 23 people arrested in Detroit during protest of mass water shutoffs in Michigan

5 arrested for blocking Quicken Loans entrance, 18 arrested for blocking QLine

Twenty-three people were arrested during a protest in Detroit. (WDIV)

DETROIT - Officials said 23 Michigan residents were arrested Monday while protesting the mass water shutoffs in Detroit, Highland Park and Flint.

Hundreds of people gathered at the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department and the Great Lakes Water Authority in support of low-income families unable to afford water and sewage costs.
Participants of the Poor People's Campaign marched to Campus Martius.

Five people were arrested for blocking the entrance to Quicken Loans and 18 people were arrested for blocking the QLine in both directions, according to the Michigan Poor People's Campaign.

Protesters said the event was sparked by "gentrification, poverty and public-private partnerships." They said dozens of low-income seniors have been evicted from HUD apartments in Downtown Detroit to create market-rate units for Quicken Loans employees.

Protesters said the development of Downtown Detroit has come at the cost of residents who live in the city's neighborhoods.

"The Poor People’s Campaign is addressing the moral crisis in this nation and calling to change the moral imperative of a country that has lost its way," the Rev. Edwin Rowe said.

According to a release from the Michigan Poor People's Campaign, there are tens of thousands of households at risk for water shutoff and thousands already without water.

"The disorganized chaos of DWSD has consistently perpetuated harm towards my family and many others with their massive shutoffs and blatant refusal to institute a proven water affordability plan," Detroit mother Nicole Hill said. "This has caused irrevocable damage to my health, financial life and well-being, and I cannot allow this harm to continue."

Monday's protest is the culmination of the group's 40-day campaign in Michigan, protesters said. Hundreds of participants previously showed up in Lansing, where nearly 100 people were arrested.

Copyright 2018 by WDIV ClickOnDetroit - All rights reserved.

Help us send a full bus to DC on June 23

Please help us fill up and/or pay for the bus from Detroit to DC on Saturday, June 23

To get on the bus for the Poor People’s Campaign Global Day of Solidarity Mass Rally click here.


Click here to sign up to be on the WAIT LIST to ride the bus. We are contacting registered riders to confirm they will travel. Will will notify you ASAP if seats become available.

The bus will leave Detroit for Washington DC on Friday, 6/22 at approximately 8pm, and will return to Detroit on Sunday, 6/24 at approximately 6am. This is a turn-around trip which means no overnight stay in DC. All riders must pay $25. (A toddler or baby who can sit on your lap is free.) Please take your own spending money for food and other purchases. SIGN-UPS ARE FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED.

If you cannot make the trip please consider making a donation so that others, particularly those most impacted by poverty, can.

Online donations can be made at MI PPC Online Donations – Please be sure to designate the donation is for MI-PPC

Thank you for any and all support.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Direct Action Updates

Michigan Poor People’s Campaign
Direct Action Updates

During the 40 Days of Action for the Poor People's Campaign, dozens of Michigan residents trained in two-days of non-violent, direct action training. They pledged to take a stand against poverty, injustice, systemic racism, and a variety of harmful actions by governments and corporations. Faith leaders from across the state joined grassroots groups, union members, parents and children, and people from all walks of life in our Great Lakes state to march for justice and demand change and accountability from elected officials and business leaders. To make our calls for action loud and clear, 105 Michigan residents were arrested over six weeks of justice-seeking, non-violent direct action in Lansing and Detroit.

Here is the weekly breakdown:

May 14: SOMEBODY’S HURTING OUR PEOPLE: Children, Women, and People with Disabilities in Poverty, LGBTQIA+

On May 14, following the rally at the Capital, we took to the streets. Around the country, at 3pm in close to 40 states, we blockaded the streets in front of our Capitals shutting down business as usual. In Michigan, we had over 40 people risking arrest that included rabbis, pastors, priests, an imam, and religious sisters. As those risking initially held the street, it liberated the space for hundreds to step in singing, chanting, and dancing. With a powerful spirit, we held the space on a hot, humid day for three hours. We declared victory.

No arrests made.

May 21: LINKING SYSTEMIC RACISM AND POVERTY: Voting Rights, Immigration, Xenophobia, Islamophobia, and the Mistreatment of Indigenous Communities

On May 21, following a rally at both the Capital and in a nearby park, we marched to the Department of Health and Human services. Twenty activists went to the front door and blocked the main entrance to the building. When it became clear, that the building and police were more than fine to use different entrances to the building, the group split into affinity groups and shut down two additional entrances. Eventually, 16 people were able to move inside the building and were immediately told they were under arrest.

They were bonded out at $300 a person and charged with the misdemeanor of trespassing.

16 people arrested.

Friday, June 15, 2018


Dear Michigan PPC Family,

Thank you for pledging your support for the Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival.  We have had five very successful days of action so far. Our sixth action, which will be held in DETROIT,  promises to be very profound and impactful! We are also excited about plans for a trip to Washington D.C. for the Global Day of Solidarity Mass Rally on Saturday, June 23. For information on how to reserve a space on the bus to Washington, please see the end of this email.
This week’s action will be in Detroit on Monday, June 18th. The theme is: A NEW AND UNSETTLING FORCE: Confronting the Distorted Moral Narrative.

If you plan to participate with us this Monday, please register on this form (even if you have before), so that we can know how many to expect, and can confirm you are aware of this week’s particulars.
Also, we want to make sure that we know how many people are planning to participate in the Non-Violent Direct Action this week. If you have already done a Direct Action training (Part 1) and plan to participate in Direct Action this week, please respond to this form to confirm your Direct Action participation plans.

The schedule for Monday, June 18th is as follows:
10:30            DA training, part 2: only for people who’ve completed part 1. Direct Action participants will gather at Central United Methodist Church, 23 E. Adams St., Detroit MI with their support people for further training and action planning from 11:00-12:30. Registration is at 10:30 am.[SEE PARKING INFORMATION BELOW]

11:30 am   Registration, gathering and light lunch for rally participants (those who will be witnessing but will not otherwise be involved in the Direct Action). This will also be at Central United Methodist Church, 23 E. Adams St., Detroit MI. [SEE PARKING INFORMATION BELOW].

12:30 pm All participants: Pre-rally and program at Central United Methodist.

1:30 pm  March to Rally Site and Rally (specifics to be announced at the church)

3:00 pm  Non-Violent Moral Fusion Direct Action at a location that will be announced at the rally. [Again, only those who have been trained will participate in the Direct Action. The rest of us will stand in support and witness with our brothers and sisters while they take Direct Action.]

Moral Monday June 18th in Detroit! #PoorPeoplesCampaign #FightPovertyNotThePoor

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

We're looking for 100 Michigan Faith Clergy to sign the PPC pledge!

A Declaration for Religious/Faith Leaders to Sign
We have been asked by media if there
are one hundred clergy/religious
leaders who will stand against
water shut offs in Detroit.

Are you a religious leader, or represent
a religious organization, that will endorse
a statement and participate in a public action
for declaring the water shut offs as
immoral and spreads disease contributing to
a public health crisis to the city of Detroit? 
The human solution is a water affordability plan.

If so please add your name to the list of 100 clergy:  
We will follow up with you to announce a plan for a Detroit press conference.
Turning off water in homes that are in hardship is inhumane. People are not able to flush toilets, bathe, or cook. As a result, there has been a dramatic increase in waterborne infectious diseases since the shut offs. The best way to prevent disease is hand washing. No running water creates a major public health risk for adults and children affected and those they come in contact. Water can be made affordable through an affordability plan passed in the city of Detroit.

We are looking for faith leaders from across Michigan, please sign and join us!

Thank you for your participation. 

Water is Life!
Water is a Sacred Gift and Natural God Given
Resource to be Shared by All.

As clergy/religious leader, (or a religious organization I represent) I stand in support of those who need water. Further, I commit to participate in a public action (press conference) declaring water shut offs immoral and contribute to the public health crisis within the city of Detroit.

I declare water to be a human right, necessary for life. I endorse a water affordability plan.

People’s Water Board, Faith Action Committee

Monday, June 11, 2018

The Last Week of Actions Is in Detroit Not Lansing

Join Michiganians from across the state in Detroit on Monday, June 18th as we hold the final statewide rally and direct actions for the Poor People's Campaign "40 Days of Action." Again, there will be no MI PPC activity in Lansing that day.

 Detailed will be posted here as they become available.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Our Next Moral Monday in Lansing is June 11 - Buses from Flint and Detroit

Week Five (June 10-16)


      Education, Living Wage Jobs, Income, Housing

Bus schedule for Monday, June 11th:

The Detroit pickup location is: Metropolitan Center for High Technology, 2727 2nd Avenue, Detroit. Boarding will begin about 9:45 a.m. for a 10:00 a.m. departure to the First Presbyterian Church, 510 W. Ottawa, Lansing, arriving approximately 12:00 p.m. Departure from the First Presbyterian Church, 510 W. Ottawa, Lansing will be at 5:00 p.m. with an approximate arrival time at the original pick-up point at 7:00 p.m. Nicole Hill is identified as the bus captain.

To reserve a seat on the bus from Detroit to Lansing, click here.

The Flint pickup location is: St. Michael's Catholic Church, 609 E. Fifth Ave. Flint. Boarding will begin at 10:45 a.m. for an 11:00 a.m. departure time, arriving at the First Presbyterian Church, 510 W. Ottawa, Lansing, This coach will depart Lansing from the First Presbyterian Church, 510 W. Ottawa, Lansing, at 5:00 p.m. for a return to the pickup point in Flint about 6:30 p.m. Nakiya Wakes is identified as bus captain.

To reserve a seat on the bus from Flint to Lansing, click here.

NOTE: Both buses will be have wheelchair lifts and are capable of locking down two (2) persons in wheelchairs per bus. For each wheelchair locked down, five (5) other seats are eliminated. Without wheelchairs locked down, the buses have the capacity of holding 56 passengers.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Last Minute Details for Michigan's 4th Moral Monday - June 4

Thank you for your interest in the Poor People's Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival.  We have had three very successful days of action so far (May 14th, 21st, and 29th). We have three days of action remaining—Monday June 4, Monday, June 11, and Monday June 18. For important information on the last two Mondays, please see the end of this email.

 This week’s action will be on Monday, June 4th. The theme isTHE RIGHT TO HEALTH AND A HEALTHY PLANET—ESPECIALLY CLEAN, AFFORDABLE WATER!. For important information about the theme and the list of demands from the National Poor People’s Campaign, please see the end of this email.

  We are excited to have the Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call to Moral Revival, joining us for the June 4 day of action!

 We know that a lot of Michiganders are very passionate about the issue of access to clean and affordable water. We want to make sure that we know how many people are planning to participate in non-violent direct action this week. If you have already done a direct action training and have not already responded to this form, please do so to indicate your direct action participation plans.

 The schedule for Monday, June 4 is as follows:

  11:00-12:30     People trained and ready for Direct Action will gather at First Presbyterian Church, 510 West Ottawa, Lansing MI with their support people for further training and action planning.

  12:00 Noon   Gathering and registration at First Presbyterian Church, 510 West Ottawa, Lansing MI for rally participants (those who will witness but will not otherwise be involved in the direct action).

  12:30-1:30 pm    Lunch and pre-rally for all participants at First Presbyterian Church.

  1:30-2:30 pm      March to the Capitol Building for rally.

  2:30-4:00 pm        Non-Violent Moral Fusion Direct Action at a location that will be announced at the rally. [Again, only those who have been trained will participate in the Direct Action. The rest will stand with these brothers and sisters while they take action.] 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: TRANSPORTATION: GET ON THE BUS! The Michigan Poor People’s Campaign is chartering two large buses to bring people to Lansing—one leaving from Detroit and one leaving from Flint.
  • To reserve a seat on the bus from Detroit to Lansing, click here. This bus will depart from the Metropolitan Center for High Technology, 2727 Second Avenue, Detroit, at approximately 10:00 a.m. It is OK to park your car through the day in the gated lot behind the building.
  • To reserve a seat on the bus from Flint to Lansing, click here. The bus will depart from St. Michael's Roman Catholic Church, 609 E. 5th Ave. Flint, MI. at approximately 10:30 a.m. and return by 6:30 or 7:00 p.m. It is OK to leave cars parked in the church lot.
LANSING PARKING - No parking is available at First Presbyterian Church; however, ample free parking is available at Union Missionary Baptist Church (500 S Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, at I-496), where shuttle service will be provided to transport people to First Presbyterian Church and back to the parking after the rally / action. There are also many pay-for-parking structures in the Capitol area. Click this website for maps and information about parking from the State of Michigan:

  LUNCH - Bring a bag lunch if you can; light lunch food will also be provided.  Please bring monetary donations and food to share - boxes of single serve bags of chips, granola bars or other snacks, bags of oranges or bananas.

  WATER- Please bring a refillable water bottle with you.  We will have water coolers for you to refill your bottle onsite. A limited number of disposable cups will be available. In solidarity with those that do not have access to clean, safe water, please do not bring any commercially bottled water with you, regardless of brand or source.

  ACCESSIBILITY- First Presbyterian Church is fully accessible.  Our march will be about six long blocks each way. Limited shuttle service to the rally location will be available for those that need it.  Please bring a folding/bag chair if possible for yourself or to share at the outside rally.

  WEATHER- Prepare for Michigan weather: sunscreen, hats, umbrellas and raincoats.

  DONATIONS- There are many ways to show your financial support for the campaign: 1)    There will be donation buckets at our events. 2)    Checks payable to People’s Water Board - In the memo line, be sure to write MI PPC. Checks can be mailed to People's Water Board c/o EMEAC4605 Cass Ave Detroit, MI 48201. 3)    Online donations can be made at MI PPC Online Donations – Please be sure to designate the donation is for MI-PPC.

 We need your participation and those of your family, friends, faith communities and supportive organizations, this week and in the future. Here are the plans for the actions that follow our June 4th action:

  Monday, June 11, Lansing, noon THEME: Everybody’s Got a Right to Live: Education, Living Wages, Jobs, Income, Housing. This is going to be another great action! CHARTERED BUSES FROM DETROIT AND FLINT WILL AGAIN BE AVAILABLE. Please reserve a seat by clicking here for the bus from Detroit, and click here for the bus from Flint.

  Monday, June 18—Location TBA (not Lansing) THEME: A New and Unsettling Force: Confronting the Distorted Moral Narrative.

  Saturday, June 23, Washington, D.C., 10 am Global Day of Solidarity Mass Rally—hope you can join in on the rally in D.C.! If you are interested in going, please let us know by responding in the MI-PPC registration form.

  We are grateful for your support and look forward to Moving Together with You - Not One Step Back! Yours in Justice, Michigan Poor People’s Campaign Coordinating Committee

 PS. Please help us mobilize for this and future Poor People’s Campaign actions, by sharing this email and our Website and Facebook page. If you organize Poor People’s Campaign events in your own community, please share those with our Facebook page as well.

Information and List of Demands for Week 4


Did you know 13.8 million U.S. households cannot afford water?

 Federal assistance to local water systems is currently 74% below its peak in 1977. This has contributed to the inability of public water utilities to address failing and aging infrastructure. It has also prompted utilities to privatize their water systems, even though private water utilities charge 59% more per unit of water than publicly owned water systems.

 As a result, nearly 12% of U.S. households face unaffordable water bills. Tens of thousands of households have had their water shut off due to non-payment, precipitating homelessness, child removal and a host of medical problems. It also means that at least 4 million families with children are being exposed to high levels of lead from drinking water and other sources. Poor rural communities face the additional problem of lacking access to piped water and sewage systems in the first place. Of the 20 counties with the highest percentage of households lacking access to complete plumbing, all were rural and 13 had a majority Native American or Alaskan Native population.

 While there is failing infrastructure in poor cities and rural counties across the country, there has been a boom in infrastructure to support fossil fuel production and transportation. Fracking has driven U.S. domestic oil and gas production since 2007, making the U.S. the world’s largest producer of both oil and gas. It has also demanded an expanded pipeline infrastructure criss-crossing the country. These pipelines often pass through or are near poor communities, including First Nations, Native American and Alaskan Native communities, whose resources and lands continue to be exploited and turned over to private interests, including through the opening of public lands to extractive industries.

Since 1998, there have been 5,712 significant oil and gas leaks or ruptures on U.S. pipelines. And since 1964, there were more than 2,400 spills from offshore drilling in U.S. waters. The largest of these was the Deepwater Horizon “BP” oil spill in 2010, which accounted for 95% of oil spilled in the past 50 years.

 There are also more than 1,100 coal ash sites throughout the country. Toxins from these sites gradually leach into water bodies and groundwater, or get released in catastrophic spills.

 Scientists have known for decades that human activities, particularly the use of fossil fuels such as coal, oil, and gas, are warming the planet. In spite of knowing the risks, political leaders have dragged their feet on implementing solutions. U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions peaked in 2007. This reveals how little priority our political leadership attaches to an existential threat that, for now, mostly impacts poor people. It also shows the political influence of the fossil fuel industry, which has effectively captured the U.S. political system and prevented the kind of drastic action the country should have taken long ago.

  The truth is that our policies have not fundamentally valued human life or the ecological systems in which we live. Instead, it has prioritized private, corporate and financial interests over our precious natural resources.

  We have a fundamental right to clean water, air and a healthy environment and public resources to monitor, penalize and reverse the polluting impacts of fossil fuel industries.
  • We demand 100% clean, renewable energy and a public jobs program to transition to a green economy that will put millions of people in sustainable living wage jobs.
  • We demand a fully funded public water and sanitation infrastructure that keeps these utilities and services under public control and that prioritize poor, rural and Native communities that have been harmed by polluting and extractive industries.
  • We demand a ban on fracking, mountaintop removal coal mining, coal ash ponds, and offshore drilling. We demand a ban on all new pipelines, refineries, and coal, oil, and gas export terminals.
  • We demand the protection of public lands and the immediate cessation of opening up public lands for polluting and extractive industries.