Environmental Community Letter in Support of S1, the For the People Act
Clean Air Moms Action ✶ Clean Water Action ✶ Defend Our Future ✶ Earthjustice ✶ EDF Action ✶ Greenpeace ✶ Interfaith Power & Light ✶ League of Conservation Voters ✶ National Wildlife Federation ✶ Natural Resources Defense Council ✶ Sierra Club ✶ The Wilderness Society
March 24, 2021
On behalf of our millions of members and supporters, we urge the Senate to pass the For the People Act (S1). This historic act would expand and protect the public’s access to fair elections and rein in the destructive influence money plays in political decision-making. This bill ensures that our democracy works for everyone, especially BIPOC communities, which historically carry the heaviest burden of pollution and voter suppression.
The 2020 election underscored the urgent need for transformational democracy reform. Despite record turnout, people across our country experienced unprecedented voter suppression, including historic efforts to drown out their voices. These attacks have only increased over the past months as 43 states have introduced more than 253 bills restricting voter access. These attacks continue to disproportionately harm the most vulnerable communities in our country, especially BIPOC communities who endure the brunt of pollution and the effects of climate change. The systemic racism rooted in voter suppression is also central to the disproportionate environmental harms faced by BIPOC communities. Strengthening our democracy and returning power to the people are essential to ensuring we act on the critical issues putting our communities’ health at risk.
These past few years have made it crystal clear that our community cannot effectively tackle the environmental issues facing our country — like combating the climate crisis, advancing environmental justice, and protecting our air, lands, waters, biodiversity, wildlife, and oceans — without fixing our broken system that provides disproportionate access and power to the wealthy. The broken status quo rewards special interests instead of the public and lets them push their toxic agenda in Congress while workers, families, communities, and our environment pay the price.
The time has come for bold, ambitious reforms to strengthen democracy for, and by, the people. We urge you to support S1, the For the People Act, so that we can make real and lasting climate progress, protect the environment and advance justice for all. Our environmental community stands ready to support your leadership.