On November 11th, Saya Ameli Hajebi from the Sunrise Movement & Kelsey Wirth, Co-founder and Chair of Mothers Out Front appeared together on Boston Public Radio.
The shift in the national dialogue towards climate change has often been attributed to a surge in climate activism, largely led by the Sunrise Movement. The Sunrise Movement is a national organization of youth activists advocating for bold leadership on climate change. Saya Ameli Hajebi, an organizer with the group, said during an interview with Boston Public Radio on Monday that one goal of the Sunrise Movement is to raise awareness for the immediate danger climate change poses to communities around the world.
“How many families, how many kids, are looking out to their home and seeing it burned to ash? How many kids are watching the last bits of brick and drywall from their school drift away because of more and more hurricanes?” Hajebi said. “This is an issue about protecting our families, and once we realize that, once we internalize just how urgent this crisis is and how it could really take our loved ones away from us, there’s no other path but to action.”
Joining Hajebi on Monday was Kelsey Wirth, the co-founder and chair of the board of Mothers Out Front. Similar to the Sunrise Movement, Mothers Out Front focuses their climate activism around the experience of being a mother during the climate crisis. Ultimately, Wirth said the goal of the group is to mobilize citizens to rival the power and influence major corporations have on elected officials.
Thanks to mothers and others, San Jose just became the largest U.S. city to ban “natural” gas infrastructure in new construction, firmly securing its role as one of the nation’s most climate-smart cities! With an outpouring of public support, the San Jose City Council members unanimously approved a ban on the use of “natural” (fracked methane) gas infrastructure in several types of new construction: single-family homes, low-rise multi-family buildings (three stories or less), detached accessory dwelling units, and municipal buildings—starting in January, 2020.
During Public Comments, Mothers Out Front South Bay members sat (where else?) up front!
1000 North Third Street, Aspen, Colorado 81611 Tel. 970-544-7929 • Fax 970-925-4188
For Immediate Release
Contact: Nina Sawhney
The Aspen Institute
Mothers Out Front Awarded $100,000 McNulty Prize
for Mobilizing Moms to Demand Bold Action on Climate Change
New York, NY, October 30, 2019 — The McNulty Foundation and the Aspen Institute today announced Kelsey Wirth and Mothers Out Front as the recipient of the 12th annual John P. McNulty Prize, which recognizes individuals who are creating sustainable models for social change. Mothers Out Front is mobilizing more than 30,000 women and their children to demand those in power at all levels of US government take bold action that will accelerate the nation’s transition away from fossil fuels.
Mother Out Front Lisa Marshall can't see why customers are being incentivized to switch to #frackedgas for heating and wrote a letter to the Times Union!
It is the five members of the Public Service Commission, appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who are tasked with actually regulating the utilities. It is their job to ensure that the utilities do their part to meet our greenhouse gas emissions targets while keeping households connected to heat and power. Right now, the PSC is sitting on an energy efficiency order that can do just that.
Read the whole letter:
Read this opinion piece in The Gardner News covering the communities in Worcester continuing the fight against climate change, including Mother Out Front Selina Gallo and her daughter.
One Worcester family’s story
Xochitl Cruz-Gallo, a 13-year-old from St. Peter Central Catholic, and her mother, Selina Gallo, a professor of sociology at the College of the Holy Cross and member of Mothers Out Front, exhibit symptoms of climate anxiety and grief.
When asked what she wants to be when she grows up, Cruz-Gallo readily responded with “climate change activist.”
“She has no other choice,” added Gallo, who could not hold back tears when thinking about her daughter’s future.
“She’s always been super talented in the theater,” Gallo said. “She thought she would be a Broadway actor one day, but this year she told me ‘I can’t do that anymore because I have to work on climate change.’ That really sucks because I can’t tell her she’s wrong.”
On Monday, October 7, the Arlington Select Board passed a resolution in support of the principles of the Future Act. This is state legislation that would make our current gas system safer and provide a road map for the utilities to transition away from gas.
Brucie Moulton, one of the Arlington Team Co-coordinators, first brought this to the Select Board in September. They asked for more information and decided to return to the issue on October 7. Brucie provided them with extensive information about the Future Act and organized people to attend the meeting. Brucie then spoke eloquently in support of the resolution. When she asked all the members of Mothers Out Front to stand, an audible gasp went through the room at the number of us who were there.
Great News from Hampton Roads, VA!
The regional committee that consists of all Hampton Roads cities and towns was considering supporting the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. The vote was scheduled today (October 17th) but they decided to delay the vote (WIN) until after they have formed a committee that will include community stakeholders (Super Duper Win!) and study the issues/concerns for supporting it. From what I understand, that process could take over 6 months. (Woohoo!)
The chairperson for the committee said during the meeting that they received over 150 emails by yesterday afternoon, another 50+ came in overnight and we're sure even more came in today. This doesn't count the emails, tweets and tags that went out directly to the individual members of the committee.
Over 20 people spoke during the public commenting period (which took over an hour!). Most of the speakers were speaking out against the ACP and associated pipelines like the Southside Connector and of them, most were residents of impacted communities from Georgetown in Chesapeake.
This is very exciting for us in Hampton Roads!
Mothers Out Front teams know the value of a Letter to the Editor to get the message out, and they want Bedford, MA to know all the benefits of the Community Choice Aggregation program.
Besides contributing to the reduction of harmful carbon emissions—a huge benefit for all of us who care about our children’s futures—this program provides additional options and benefits to which most of us may not have given much thought. For more information about Bedford’s program, please check the website (https://bedfordcca.com/).
Mothers Out Front Duchess County (NY) is #inthenews as they get ready for a tremendous rally on October 13th! (You can join in by RSVPing here.)
“The earth has a fever, and it gets hotter every year. What is New York doing about this?” asks Johanna Fallert of Mothers Out Front–Dutchess County.
On October 13, from 1 to 3:30 p.m., the environmental advocacy organization will take that question public with Earth to Cuomo: The Rally for New York’s Climate, at Waryas Park, in Poughkeepsie.
While the rally will include family fun, live music and food trucks, Fallert says, it will also send a strong message to Gov. Cuomo from his constituents. “We will voice our concerns about climate warming and the threat to health and the environment from the emissions of fracked gas power plants, pipelines and infrastructure throughout New York,” she says.
After a big victory getting a Climate Emergency Resolution passed leading up to the Youth Climate Strike, Worcester ended the week of action with a rally on September 27th. The rally started at the Lincoln Square Plaza with a few hundred people in attendance. The march continued a few blocks down Main Street and made a stop in front of the TD Bank. Mothers Out Front Worcester volunteer leaders Wahya Wolfpaw, Christina Wertz and Selina Gallo-Cruz were in attendance and marched with the Mothers Out Front banner. The group met with others in front of the City Hall steps for the remainder of the program.
Wahya represented Mothers Out Front Worcester as one of the speakers in the program. She pleaded with the adults in the rally to support the young people's leadership to protect our community against the climate crisis.