For Immediate Release
Contact: Kelsey Hinton, 765-729-1674
February 12, 2019
SACRAMENTO/VISALIA/WATSONVILLE -- We are thrilled to announce that Community Water Center’s Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director Laurel Firestone was appointed today by Governor Gavin Newsom as a Board Member of the State Water Resources Control Board. The Board has broad regulatory oversight and administers significant funding resources impacting California’s water, including access to safe and affordable drinking water.
Statement from Laurel Firestone
In 2006, Susana De Anda and I started the Community Water Center based on a simple idea: that access to safe drinking water is a basic human right. Since then we have worked alongside thousands of local community members and have achieved real progress. But it will take the continued efforts of CWC and community leaders in order to finally secure the California promise of safe, clean, affordable drinking water for all. I accept the Governor's appointment to the State Water Board knowing that CWC is stronger than ever, and I remain committed to working together as part of the movement for water justice.
Statement from Susana De Anda
Laurel has been a champion for the Human Right to Water since the founding of the Center. I know she will continue to be a champion at the State Water Board. Thanks to over a decade of community leadership, the movement for water justice is strong. But the fight for safe drinking water remains urgent. CWC will continue this year to lead alongside community partners to end our state's drinking water crisis which impacts more than 1 million Californians each year, through passage of the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund. CWC will continue to advocate for protection of groundwater and lift up the needs of communities on the frontline. CWC will continue to organize and build community-centered leadership from the ground up. This is a victory for the community -- today we celebrate Laurel’s appointment, tomorrow the fight for water justice continues.
Statement from Bessma Mourad -- President of the Center’s Board of Directors
Today’s appointment of Laurel Firestone is a reflection of the leadership and impact of the Community Water Center. CWC is a strong organization with a smart, dedicated staff and has relationships within communities impacted by unsafe water going back more than a decade. Led by Co-Founder Susana De Anda and supported by CWC’s leadership team, we are confident that CWC will continue to be at the forefront in the fight for water justice. We congratulate Laurel and look forward to this new chapter in her leadership and impact.
Community Water Center (CWC) was founded in 2006 as a community-based organization that believes all communities should have access to clean, safe, and affordable water. CWC works as a catalyst for community-driven water solutions through organizing, education, and advocacy in California. For more information, visit www.communitywatercenter.org.
Inauguration of Gavin Newsom is an Opportunity for California to Finally Attain Human Right to Safe, Affordable Drinking Water
SAFE AND AFFORDABLE DRINKING WATER FUND COALITION
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 7, 2019
CONTACT: Mike Roth, 916-444-7170
INAUGURATION OF GAVIN NEWSOM IS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR
CALIFORNIA TO FINALLY ATTAIN HUMAN RIGHT TO SAFE, AFFORDABLE DRINKING WATER
Sacramento, CA – Today the Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund Coalition released the following statement from Dan Howells, California State Director of Clean Water Action, on the inauguration of Gavin Newsom as Governor of California:
“Governor Gavin Newsom takes office at a time when California’s moral leadership and unparalleled potential are clouded by our failure to deliver the essential human right of safe and affordable drinking water to one million Californians.
“The fact that communities of color face the highest risk from unsafe water is a situation Governor Newsom recently and strongly declared is ‘unbecoming of who we are and what we stand for.’ Representing a broad coalition of community water advocates and economic justice groups, we stand ready and willing with proven solutions. What is needed to implement those solutions – indeed, what is long overdue – is a permanent funding commitment from the state towards providing universal access to safe drinking water.
“Seven years after California declared access to safe and affordable drinking water is a human right, 2019 must be the year we meet this mandate and Governor Newsom’s challenge, ‘We own this, we’ve got to fix this.’ We look forward to working with the Governor and new Legislature to make the right to safe taps and school drinking fountains a reality.”
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Water Programs Intern
Jo is a senior engineering major at Santa Clara University. She has joined the CWC as an intern through her Hackworth fellowship with Santa Clara University’s Markkula Center for Applied Ethics to explore the ethical dimensions of access to clean drinking water. She will be conducting market research on point-of-use treatment devices and their monitoring technology, as well as assisting the Watsonville office in their community water programs. She is excited to spend her last two quarters in college working this internship with the CWC.
Watsonville Office, (831) 288-0450
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Martha, a student at High Tech Elementary in San Diego, was inspired by learning that people around the world don’t have access to clean water. As a class project, she was assigned to write about someone she sees as a revolutionary. Choosing to focus on California’s drinking water fight, she chose to highlight CWC’s Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director Susana De Anda for her role in the water justice movement. See her short story on Susana below!
My name is Maria Rivera-Alvarado and most of my experience has been in Accounting. I used to work in the tax industry preparing personal and small business income taxes, while also handing all of the bookkeeping. When I became a mom, my career interests shifted towards more mission-driven and environmental organizations. I had the opportunity to work for a non-profit organization that supports grassroots initiatives to inspire community action to protect the environment, consumers and public health for about two years as an Accounting Assistant. I moved to the Sacramento area in 2018 and began working for the Community Water Center as a Program Associate.
Sacramento Office, (916) 706-3346
Yesterday was the first day to file your paperwork to run in your local water board election! The last day to submit your paperwork at your county’s elections office is August 10th. Being a part of your local water board is important because it’s an opportunity to make direct change in your community. If your community is currently dealing with water quality concerns, there’s even more of an opportunity for you to be part of finding a solution!
To learn more, visit our webpage here: www.communitywatercenter.org/water_board_elections
If you are interested in running but have any questions or concerns, feel free to call or email Adriana Renteria 559-733-0219 email@example.com
¡Ayer fue el primer día para entregar los documentos para postularse como candidato a la Mesa Local del Agua! El último día para entregar los documentos será el viernes, 10 de agosto, 2018. La responsabilidad y la oportunidad para tener una representación comunitaria fuerte depende de los residentes que decidan postularse para la mesa directiva del agua. Si usted tiene problemas con la calidad del agua en su comunidad y se postula como candidato es aún otra oportunidad para poder ser parte de la solución.
Visite nuestra página web: www.communitywatercenter.org/water_board_elections
Si usted está interesad@ en postularse como candidat@ o si tiene preguntas, comuníquese con Adriana Renteria al 559-733-0219 o firstname.lastname@example.org
1) Contact your local county elections office to verify that the address where you are registered to vote is within the district you are running for.
2) Go to your county’s elections office to sign the candidacy forms in-person under the supervision of the county elections office clerk. All paperwork must be submitted between the dates of July 16th--August 10th in order to be on the ballot for the election.
Optional: 3) candidates can choose to pay a fee to submit an optional candidate statement which is a short summary written by the candidate that tells voters why they are running for a seat on their local water board. This candidate statement is included in the ballot that voters receive in the mail. If you choose not to pay for an optional candidate statement, make sure you let your community know you are running in other ways--like using social media or attending community events!
To learn more about the specific forms you will need to fill out, visit our webpage here: www.communitywatercenter.org/water_board_elections
1) Comuníquese a la Oficina Electoral Local del Condado para verificar que su domicilio donde está registrado para votar le permite ser candidato para la Mesa Directiva del Agua que se quiere postular.
2) Vaya a la Oficina Electoral del Condado para firmar en persona la forma sobre la Declaración del Candidato y otros documentos necesarios para postularse. Es importante que todos los candidatos entreguen los documentos entre el 16 de julio hasta el 10 de agosto para poder aparecer en las boletas el día de las elecciones.
3) Paso opcional: Los candidatos tienen la opción de escribir una declaración para ser compartida con los votantes. Este resumen es opcional y la oficina electoral del condado cobrará una tarifa para dar a conocer la declaración del candidato. Si decide no pagar para la declaración del candidato, puede decirle a su comunidad que se está postulando para la Mesa Directiva Del Agua usando las redes sociales o también puede asistir a juntas comunitarias.
Para saber más sobre los documentos que necesita entregar para postularse como candidato, visite nuestra página web: www.communitywatercenter.org/water_board_elections
Earlier this year, CWC released a report that found that in the southern San Joaquin Valley, 87% of local water board seats were uncontested in the most recent election -- that’s almost 500 local seats. When only one candidate runs for a seat, the seat does not appear on a ballot, and the election does not take place. In Fresno, Kern, Kings, and Tulare counties, 75 of 109 local water boards studied have not held a single election in the last four years. When there isn’t a lot of competition for local water board seats, sometimes it could mean that a board member who is doing a great job remains on the board and continues their great work. Other times it could mean board members who aren’t listening to community concerns remain on the board because there is no one running against them. Local water boards offer an opportunity for residents to take action to make a difference in your community.
Take the next step to make a difference in your community by visiting our webpage to learn more about how to run in your local election: www.communitywatercenter.org/water_board_elections
Un nuevo informe del Centro Comunitario Por el Agua refleja una dura realidad: simplemente no hay suficientes residentes interesados en ser parte de la mesa del agua, principalmente en el sur del Valle de San Joaquín. Por lo tanto, refleja una falta de representación por parte de la comunidad. 87% de los puestos de la mesa local del agua no fueron disputados en las elecciones más recientes, es decir, no hubo ningún nuevo candidato para tomar el lugar de la mesa del agua. Cuando sólo un candidato se postula para la mesa del agua entonces la elección no se lleva a cabo y automáticamente toma el lugar en la mesa directiva. En los cuatro condados estudiados, 75 de 109 mesas locales del agua no han tenido una sola elección en los últimos cuatros años. Cuando no hay suficiente gente postulándose para la mesa local del agua, a veces puede significar que un miembro de la mesa que está haciendo un gran trabajo permanece en la mesa y continúa su gran trabajo. Otras veces puede significar que los miembros de la mesa que no están escuchando las preocupaciones de la comunidad permanecen en este puesto porque no hay nadie que se postule contra ellos. Las mesas directivas del agua local ofrecen una oportunidad para que los residentes tomen medidas para marcar la diferencia en su comunidad.
Visite nuestra página web para saber más sobre las mesas directivas del agua www.communitywatercenter.org/water_board_elections
Yesterday was a powerful day with over 100 residents from the San Joaquin Valley traveling to Sacramento to share their experience with unsafe water and urge legislators to support the Governor’s Safe and Affordable Drinking Water Fund. Several speakers raised their voices for safe water at the rally including West Goshen resident Lucy Hernandez, Lanare resident Isabel Solario, Senator Bill Monning, Senator Ed Hernandez, Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo, State Water Resources Control Board Chair Felicia Marcus, Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture Karen Ross, Dolores Huerta and Dr. Salvador Sandoval.
See pictures from the day below! Thank you to everyone who took the time to raise their voices for safe water!
Erica joined us this week as our new Director of Organizing! She brings years of experience working with low-income, rural communities on environmental justice issues, and we are so excited to be working with her. See more about Erica here and be sure to say hi if you see her around the Visalia office!
Our Civic Engagement Project team spent the past few weeks contacting thousands of Tulare County Latino voters! They talked to voters about water in their community and reminded them to vote. See pictures of the team below!
¡Nuestro equipo del Proyecto de Participación Cívica pasó las últimas semanas contactando a miles de votantes latinos en el condado de Tulare! El equipo ha estado hablando con los votantes sobre el agua en su comunidad y recordándoles que voten el 5 de junio. ¡Lo invitamos a que vean las fotos del equipo!