Although Mayor Mike Duggan promises to have a “new plan shortly” to address the city water department’s highly criticized effort to collect delinquent bill payments, activists who have been protesting the shutoffs remain unconvinced that the change in leadership will have any tangible results.
The withdrawal of public services in Detroit is typically framed as an unavoidable response to the city’s declining tax base. Alternatively, we frame these violations as an active assault against communities of color and low-income families in the interest of white-controlled financial institutions.
At least a thousand people, including local residents, activists, and clergy and attendees of the progressive Netroots Nation political conference, filled the streets of Detroit on Friday to protest water service shutoffs to thousands of low-income residents.
Despite being surrounded by the largest collection of freshwater lakes in the world, thousands of Detroit residents—most of them low-income people of color—are finding themselves without access to fresh water because of actions by the city’s water department that advocates say are in violation of Detroiters’ human rights.
Much of the discussion this election cycle has been about changing demographics. But demographics alone aren’t going to run a policy agenda through the system. Huge challenges remain in economic justice, immigration, environment, education and housing reform.
The anti-choice movement uses false concern about women of color in a classic effort to divide-and-conquer. Reproductive justice advocates say thanks but no thanks…we’ve got it covered.