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New Jersey Sierra Club Stands with the Occupy Movement

Date : Fri, 14 Oct 2011 16:21:00 -0400 For Immediate Release
October 14, 2011 Contact Jeff Tittel, 609-558-9100

New Jersey Sierra Club Stands with the Occupy Movement

For the past several weeks Occupy Wall Street/Trenton protesters have peacefully held vigil in support of a broad vision for financial, political, and environmental reform in America. From this creative hub of activity, a diverse group of students, members of labor unions, environmentalists, and concerned citizens have helped this grassroots protest spread to more than 1,400 events nationwide. Occupy Trenton across from the statehouse has been peacefully occupying the War Memorial for eight days, but have been told today that their belongings need to be removed. The New Jersey Sierra Club staff and volunteers have participated in or lent support to these demonstrations standing with them for the end to corporate greed. The demands and values of the protesters are very much in line with Sierra Club's strategic priority of confronting the power of the coal and oil industries.

"The New Jersey Sierra Club believes that the Occupiers in Trenton should be allowed to continue to stand up to special interest power herein Trenton. We are concerned the removal of their tents and other equipment is being used to undermine their efforts. They should be allowed to stay and protect themselves from the weather. It is important for people to address the government for grievances and in Trenton we have a lot of grievances," said Jeff Tittel, Direct of the New Jersey Sierra Club. In a vibrant democracy, peaceful protest and demonstration is among the highest form of citizen engagement in the democratic process. Since the founding of our republic, ordinary citizens have accomplished extraordinary things by joining together to express their convictions. It is our heritage to speak truth to power, and our nation's historic respect for peaceful dissent has helped the United States enact civil rights legislation, promote human rights internationally, and end unjust wars. The Civil Rights Movement and Women's movement helped shape our country to what it is today. Citizen engagement has brought this country out of its darkest hours and helped us fulfill our promises of justice and equality to millions. We have the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act as well as many other environmental laws thanks to the Environmental Movement in the 1970's. Corporations that pollute our air, land and water, that put greed ahead of community good, public health and the nation's economic well-being must be held fully accountable. In our work around the country, we have seen first-hand how international coal and oil companies have wrecked communities, polluted our environment, and dominated the political process. We stand with Occupy Wall Street and Occupy Trenton protesters in saying "enough."

"We will never have clean air and clean water without a clean government. That is why we support Occupy Wall Street and Occupy Trenton because we need to get rid of corporate influences that use campaign contributions to gain political power used to weaken environmental protections. The best example of that is trying to weaken environmental rules and regulations to allow fracking in Delaware River Basin where 15 million people get their drinking water or the Halliburton loophole by Bush to exempt fracking from 7 major environmental laws. This is what is wrong in our country and state. This is what has to change," said Jeff.

Nicole Dallara, Outreach Coordinator NJ Sierra Club 145 W. Hanover Street Trenton, NJ 08618 609.656.7612 (f) 609.656.7618 Received on 2011-10-14 13:21:00

New Jersey Sierra Club, 145 West Hanover St., Trenton, NJ 08618, USA
tel: 609 656 7612, fax 609 656 7618
or email Nicole Dallara, Outreach Coordinator, at nicole.dallara@sierraclub.org

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