Our Issue Captains in action!
Behind the scenes, Action Utah Issue Captains have been busy at work identifying, researching, supporting and even at times leading initiatives in our state and local communities in order to bring you community lobbying opportunities on the issues you care about most. Here are a few of the things we’ve been up to in the last week:
Poverty/Homelessness Issue Captain Teresa Carlson, attended the Homeless Summit, met with Speaker of the House Greg Hughes and called on staff from 3 congressional offices to join the upcoming Utah Housing Coalition’s annual conference in Ogden next week.
Immigrant/Refugee Issue Captain Laura Bandara, met with Mayor John Curtis and a group of concerned community members to discuss immigration policy and issues in Utah.
Women/Families Issue Captain Angie Cook, met with Rebecca Chavez Houck, Becky Edwards and the Department of Workforce Services to discuss ways to improve early child care and education.
Catch them and other Action Utah leaders this week at Interim Session at the Capitol on Wednesday, October 18th, where we’ll be giving our monthly tour and overview of the state legislature.
How Our Political System Works and How To Engage It: Utah Politics 101 For Ordinary People – Wed, October 18th, 7:00-8:30p, Director’s Suite at the Thanksgiving Point Megaplex Theater, 2935 North Thanksgiving Way, Lehi, UT 84043. Learn about our legislative branch, delegates, candidates and elections, including how you can impact policy decisions, how to become a delegate and why running for office may actually be up your alley. Guest speakers and former state legislators PAT JONES (Executive Director of the Women’s Leadership Institute) and HOLLY RICHARDSON (Salt Lake Tribune columnist, advocate and Real Women Run member) will give us their insider’s perspective and tips. RSVP here.
Interim Session Tour of the Capitol – Wed, October 18th, 7:45-8:15am. Action Utah leaders will walk small groups of interested community members on a tour of the Capitol Campus and introduction to our state legislature. NOTE: in lieu of ordinary Interim Committee meetings, all meetings at Interim Session this month will be Appropriations Committees, with legislators deciding on budgetary items. Please feel free to stay and sit in on a meeting to witness how our legislators decide on fiscal matters. Meet in the cafeteria on the ground floor of the Senate Building (on the east side of campus, next to the parking lot). RSVP here.
1. SHARE YOUR STORY TO IMPROVE POLICY FOR WOMEN AND FAMILIES IN UTAH. The recent revelations about Harvey Weinstein’s history of mistreatment and abuse of women reminds us how many stories are out there unspoken and how important those stories can be in shaping policies and decisions that protect women or simply improve workplaces to better suit the needs of Utah families. We’re helping the Utah Women’s Coalition collect personal stories and experiences to help us better understand how certain laws and policies impact women and families in Utah. From breastfeeding to medical and family leave to discrimination, we want to hear from you in order to help create better policies.
- Share your stories with Utah Women’s Coalition by clicking this link.
2. ASK OUR ATTORNEY GENERAL TO STAND UP TO RELIGIOUS DISCRIMINATION. Trump’s latest travel ban has been criticized widely as unconstitutional and unAmerican because of its religious discrimination against Muslims. Trump has already issued two versions of the travel ban, which a group of state Attorney Generals have been fighting since January. As Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson points out, Trump’s “Muslim Ban 3.0” is even worse because it is “broader than his previous efforts because rather than imposing a “temporary pause,” it indefinitely bans immigration by individuals from six majority Muslim countries (Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, Yemen and Chad).” Last week six Attorneys General filed an Updated Complaintand a Temporary Restraining Order against the latest version of the travel ban. Check out this overview of the ban by the National Iranian American Council and take action to protect families in our state from religious discrimination.
- Call Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes and ask him to join the seven attorneys generalwho are fighting religious discrimination. Just like the previous two versions, the latest version is unconstitutional and un-American because it discriminates on the basis of religion. Express your hope that AG Sean Reyes will find the moral courage to stand up against Trump’s hateful policy.
3. REMIND UTAH’S REPS THAT UTAHNS THINK OUR NATIONAL MONUMENTS ARE WORTH KEEPING. Polling data shows that 60% of Utahns want to keep our monuments in place and 84% of Utahns want to improve public access to lands. Improved access boils down to protecting the land from privatization, which forever closes our lands off to the people while potentially destroying artifacts of deep historical and spiritual relevance and of critical scientific interest in the process. Native tribes hold the oldest claim to Utah’s lands as part of their heritage, spirituality and history, and they support the founding of Bears Ears in their honor by huge margins. Local business owners depend on national monuments to feed their families. Broad support for our national monuments comes from a wide range of people hailing from across the political spectrum, including hunters and anglers, faith leaders, veterans, outdoor enthusiasts, archaeologists, tourists, business owners, outdoor industry, conservationists, scientists, children and families. Raise up the voices of those who are speaking up to keep our monuments in place.
- Share the following articles widely on social media to highlight Utah voices on national monuments. Tag Secretary Zinke and our members of Congress and use hashtags like #MonumentsForAll, #StandWithBearsEars and #SaveGrandStaircase
Deseret News op-ed: “Utah delegation needs a clear message about our monuments”
Uintah Basin Standard op-ed: “The Value of Nothing”
Deseret News op-ed: “What does our country keep erasing history?”
Salt Lake Tribune op-ed: “Defending our country and its public lands” Deseret News op-ed: “We must protect wild Utah”
1. DEFEND CLEAN AIR. In March Trump filed an executive order asking the EPA to roll back the Clean Power Plan. Last week, EPA administrator Scott Pruitt announced that the start of the repeal process, which includes a public comment period that begins today. Critics of the Clean Power Plan have perpetuated myths around the rule to rally public support. However, the facts remain that the Clean Power Plan is supported by a majority of American businesses, who are not worried about negative economic or job numbers impacts, and repealing it would not necessarily bring back coal jobs. Other facts that remain? Check out the EPA’s own fact sheet about how the Clean Power Plan would dramatically reduce air pollution responsible for causing significant illnesses, disease and premature deaths across America and Utah. Clean air is a top priority for a large majority of Utahns. It is critical for Utahns to participate in the comment period and speak up for this valuable rule and for clean air in Utah and across the country.
- Submit a comment to the EPA today under Docket #EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355. You can submit a comment by clicking https://www.regulations.gov and following the instructions for submitting comments to EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355 or by emailing your comment to a-and-r-Docket@epa.gov. Be sure to include Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355 in the subject line of the message. Comments must be received on or before December 15, 2017.
2. PROTECT THE ANTIQUITIES ACT FROM H.R. 3990. Last week, the House Natural Resources Committee voted along party lines to pass Chairman Rob Bishop’s “National Monument Creation and Protection Act,” referring this legislation to the House of Representatives. Of concern, Bishop’s legislation was hastily introduced last Monday and was voted out of committee 48 hours later, an unusual use of “fast-tracking” uncommon within congressional committees. This rapid maneuver last week prevented dialogue on the crucial issue of national public land use. Sportsmen, scientists, outdoor industry, and conservationists alike oppose this extremist legislation because it neither creates nor protects national monuments, which is why it has quickly earned the reputation as the “No New Parks Act”.
- Tell your representative how you feel about HR 3990. CD-1 constituents, let Rob Bishop know that HR 3990 is extremist and antithetical to the wishes of the Utahns he represents. Not in CD-1? Ask your representative to vote NO on H.R. 3990.
- Call on our Senators to oppose the extremist bill H.R. 3990 National Monument Protection and Creation Act. The bill threatens America’s lands, waters, culturally and historically significant places, and the wildlife habitats that Utahns depend on and love.
- Read and share Outside’s “How Rob Bishop Plans to Gut the Antiquities Act”.
Sen. Orrin Hatch (202) 224-5251 (DC) // (801) 524-4380 (SLC) // (801) 375-7881 (Provo) // (435) 634-1795 (St. George) // (801) 625-5672 (Ogden) // (435) 586-8435 (Cedar City)
Sen. Mike Lee 202-224-5444 (DC) // 801-524-5933 (SLC) // 435-628-5514 (St. George) // 801-392-9633 (Ogden)
Rep. Rob Bishop (Congressional District 1): 202-225-0453 (DC) // 801-625-0107 (Ogden)
Rep. Chris Stewart (Congressional District 2): 202-225-9730 (DC) // 801-364-5550 (SLC) // 435-627-1500 (St. George)
Rep. Mia Love (Congressional District 4): (202) 225-3011 (DC) // 801-996-8729 (West Jordan)
Not sure who your U.S. Representative is? Check here.
Share us with your friends!
Action Utah’s resources, calls to action and community events are open to men and women from any party who are interested in learning a little more about how to make a difference on the issues that matter to you the most. Join us at Thanksgiving Point on Wednesday evening and bring along your friends and family. Or spread the word by sharing this email with anyone you think might be interested in learning about how easy and meaningful it can be for ordinary community members like you and me to impact policy decisions in Utah.
Andrea & Katie
Co-Founders, Action Utah