Speakers tell the untold story of the poisoning of an entire city’s water


Speakers are available on what the poisoning of a city’s water means for the country. Speakers can discuss why water should be publicly owned and the fight to guarantee that everyone has safe, clean water – regardless of ability to pay!

Claire McClinton, a Flint resident and former auto worker, is available to speak about the Flint water crisis, the dismantling of democracy in Michigan and the fight for toxin-free and affordable water as a human right. “In Flint, people were poisoned with lead and other toxins in the water. This was the direct result of a dictatorial emergency manager switching the city’s water supply to the Flint River in 2014,” she explains. In addition to speaking about the water crisis in America, McClinton discusses the question of how today’s new technology could make a new society possible – a world where life could be better for all. McClinton’s social activism has included advocacy for the homeless and for welfare rights. She is a member of the Democracy Defense League Water Task Force. She was born and raised in Flint, attending Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church. She is a retiree from General Motors and proudly served in various positions at the United Auto Workers Local 659.

Maureen D. Taylor, Chair of the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization, has been in the front lines of the struggle of the poor for decades. Today, she is a leader in the fight to turn water back on for thousands of families in Detroit who cannot afford to pay the skyrocketing price of water. Maureen asks what kind of society allows people to go without water, food, or homes? She brings an understanding of the underlying cause of the destruction of so many lives of the poor.

Marian Kramer, co-chair of the National Welfare Rights Union, has been in the front lines of the welfare and civil rights movement since its origin in the 1960s. Today, she is in the forefront of the fight to turn water back on for thousands of families in Detroit who cannot afford to pay the skyrocketing price of water. She, along with others, was recently arrested for disorderly contact while attempting to block city trucks from turning off people's water. For decades Marian has defended poor women and families against unjust prosecution for "welfare fraud"; and led electoral campaigns to elect the victims of poverty to political office.

Sylvia Orduño, an organizer with the Michigan Welfare Rights Organization in Detroit, MI, has been in the forefront of the struggle to stop the shutoffs of water to low-income families in Detroit for years.

Sal Sandoval, MD, MPH, is a long time health provider and advocate for the poor, the homeless, farm workers, and the protection of the environment. He mentors future doctors and health providers, not just on medical treatment, but also on the social and economic determinants of a healthy society. Dr. Sandoval recently completed a pamphlet on California’s drought.

Steven Miller has written extensively about the privatization of public schools and other resources, such as water, in society. He co-authored, the pamphlet, “Water Wars - Coming Soon to Your Town!”. It is an in-depth analysis of the cause and solution to the current effort on the part of the corporations and government to privatize the public’s water.

Danny Alexander started writing about music, in part, because of the way it reflected the social and political issues that surrounded him. As a teacher, he has long been engaged in the fight against privatization of public schools. The combination of these concerns has led him to work on the many ways capitalism is trying to eradicate the public sector. He co-authored the pamphlet Water Wars--Coming Soon to Your Town. His most recent book is Real Love No Drama: The Music of Mary J. Blige.