A Big Week Ahead For Action Utah!

Stand up for what’s right.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day reminds us to build bridges, not walls, and to use the power of our voices to speak out about things that matter. This is a big week in Utah and around our country for standing up and speaking out. Each of us can make an impact, and together our collective voice is power. Try going above and beyond for MLK Day this week by doing something you’ve never done before — like making a commitment to stand up against bigotry, calling a legislator or attending a community action meeting or rally. Speak out about something that matters to you. Go on, it feels good to make a difference!

This is a big week for events around Utah!

Mon, Jan 16th 6:00p – KRCL Radioactive. Tune in to KRCL at 90.9FM to hear our Action Utah co-founders interviewed by Lara Jones, top of the hour

Wed, Jan 18th 6:00-8:00p – Action Utah Community Action Meeting, Publik Coffee Roasters, 975 W Temple, SLC. Learn how to make an impact at the state legislative session starting next week. Speakers include Sen. Luz Escamilla, Sen. Gene Davis, Sen. Brian King, Tara Rollins (Dir. UT Housing Coalition), Turner Bitton (Exec. Dir. UT Coalition Against Sexual Assault), Marina Lowe (ACLU) and more! RSVP on Facebook or by email.

Sat, Jan 21st, 9:00-10:30a – Women’s March on Main, Park City (during the Sundance Film Festival). Event info.

Sat, Jan 21st, 1:00-2:00p – Clean Air, No Excuses Rally, State Capitol Building, Salt Lake City. Event info.

Sat, Jan 21st, 2:00-3:00p – Women’s March on St. George, St. George City Building. Event info.

Look for more great events to come in our Action Utah Calendar.

Weekly Actions

State Issues

1. Attend Action Utah’s Community Action Meeting on Wed. Jan 18th – The state legislative session begins Jan 23rd and runs for only 45 days. Yes, there are just 45 days for our state senators and representatives to pass or reject all of Utah’s state legislation for the year. Citizen engagement in the state legislative session is crucial. Find out how ordinary citizens can impact bills across a range of important issues. Not in Salt Lake? Watch the meeting via FB Live on our Facebook page (available live and after the event).

2. Help Conserve Bonanza Flats – Utah Open Lands is working hard to conserve 1,350 acres of Wasatch wilderness and recreation area called Bonanza Flats in the Park City area. Park City residents have already voted to tax themselves in bonds to purchase the property for conservation, and government entities will fund another chunk, but the project still has a $3M gap. Utah Open Lands is calling on Salt Lake, Wasatch and Summit County residents to fill the gap. Please click here to donate.

National Issues

1. Reject Trump’s egregious picks for the White House Cabinet – While senate confirmation hearings will continue for Jeff Sessions and Rex Tillerson, committee hearings will begin this week for Betsy DeVos, Ryan Zinke, Scott Pruitt and Rick Perry.

  • Call our UT senators to demand thorough vetting and questioning of these nominees and to oppose their nomination
  • Call committee members to demand the same

Senator Orrin Hatch – D.C. (202) 224-5251, UT (435) 586-8435
Senator Mike Lee – D.C. (202) 224-5444, UT (801) 392-9633

– Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education – billionaire philanthropist, conservative activist who has forcefully pushed for private school voucher programs to funnel taxpayer dollars from public to private and religious schools and who supports gay “conversion” therapy. DeVos has not been fully vetted by the Office of Government Ethics. A partial OGE review of her background and finances revealed Friday that DeVos neglected to disclose information pertaining to a potential conflict of interest. Senate HELP Committee hearing scheduled for Tues 1/17

  • Tell UT and HELP Committee senators to demand Betsy DeVos be fully vetted by the Office of Government Ethics prior to her senate hearing and to oppose Betsy DeVos’ nomination for Secretary of Education.

Rep. Ryan Zinke for Secretary of the Department of Interior – Supports aggressive oil, gas and coal extraction on federal lands, opposed rule to reduce natural gas waste, but has a mixed record on other environment and land issues, climate denier. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing scheduled for Tues 1/16.

  • Tell UT and Energy Committee senators to thoroughly question Zinke about his stance on and commitment to pubic lands, climate and fossil fuels and to reject Zinke as Interior Secretary.

– Scott Pruitt for Head of the EPA – Oklahoma Attorney General, fossil-fuel funded climate denier and self-proclaimed “leading advocate against the EPA’s activist agenda”, Pruitt’s nomination is about one thing: gutting the EPA of its ability to create and enforce regulation in the name of environmental and human health protections. For more information on Pruitt and his anti-EPA agenda, click here. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing scheduled for Wed 1/18.

  • Tell UT and EPW Committee senators to uphold the Clean Power Plan and the Paris climate agreement, strengthen the EPA (not gut it) and oppose Scott Pruitt’s nomination for Head of the EPA.

– Rick Perry for Energy Secretary – former Governor of Texas, threatened to close the Energy Department then later famously forgot the name of the department as the one he wanted to eliminate, on the board of the Dakota Access Pipeline, climate denier with a record of increasing fossil fuel production, but also renewable energy production, in Texas. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing scheduled Thurs 1/19.

  • Tell UT and Energy Committee senators to thoroughly question Perry about his stance on climate change and renewable energy.

– Jeff Sessions for Attorney General, deemed too racist for a federal judge appointment in the 1980’s, numerous documented racist and bigoted comments, climate denier, the legal director of the ACLU testifying against him.

  • Tell our UT senators to oppose the nomination of Jeff Sessions for Attorney General.

– Rex Tillerson for Secretary of State – Exxon/Mobile CEO, a top funder of climate denial and attacks on climate action, connections with the Russian government, obvious conflicts of interest, lack of experience.

  • Tell our UT senators to thoroughly question Tillerson about his role in defrauding the public for decades about climate change, the fossil fuel industry’s role in perpetrating global warming, his stance on climate change, on the Russian hacking of the election and on investigation of Trump’s alleged ties to Russia and to oppose Tillerson’s nomination as Secretary of State.

2. Stand Up For Climate Action – (From Sierra Club) Donald Trump and his administration oppose the Clean Power Plan and plan to sell off our public lands, hobble the EPA, expand fossil fuel extraction and infrastructure, and withdraw from the Paris Agreement. The environmental policies promoted by his cabinet nominees represent a very real threat to the safety of our communities and the health of our families and our planet. That’s why we’re coming together as part of the People’s Climate Movement January 21-24—the first 100 hours of the Trump administration—to stand up for our planet and our communities.

  • Click here to register for the People’s Climate Movement, 100 Hours of Resistance and find or host an event near you.

3. Get educated on the ACA – Not sure how you feel about the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare)? Read up on it. Many opponents of Obamacare don’t realize how much good the ACA has brought to our state, that flaws in the system can be worked out over time, or that Republican alternative plans are far worse. Click here for a primer by the Dept. of Health and Human Services on how ACA is working in Utah. Check out this Mother Jones article comparing Obamacare to Paul Ryan’s plan or this MJ article on Trumpcare.

Let our voices be heard

May Martin Luther King Jr. be an inspiration for us all about the power of standing up and speaking out on ethical issues. This is a big week in Utah and around our country for rallying and standing up for what is right. At Action Utah we are committed to helping the center find a voice and making our collective voice heard. We hope to see you at our Wednesday community action meeting!

Andrea & Katie
Action Utah Co-Founders

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