Coverage about the upcoming presidential race is everywhere you look these days. However, Our Kitchen Table believes that some of the Michigan ballot proposals could have more impact on our lives here in Michigan.
Of extreme importance, especially to communities of color, Proposal 1 gives voters the opportunity to strike down governor appointed emergency managers from taking control of our municipalities and schools, as they have in Benton Harbor and Detroit. Emergency managers can set aside locally elected officials, fire employees, suspend collective bargaining agreements and sell city and school assets.
Proposal 2 seeks ensure that “people’s rights to organize, join or assist unions and to bargain collectively” are upheld. Without unions, we would not have the 40 hour week, decent wages, regulation of child labor and health benefits (all of which are coming under attack).
Proposal 3 requires “electric utilities to provide at least 25% of their annual retail sales of electricity from renewable energy sources, wind, solar, biomass and hydropower, by 2025.” This can build a clean energy industry, create thousands of Michigan jobs and give Michigan cleaner air and water. Again, communities of color suffer the most from air and water pollution created by coal power and incinerators.
For unbiased information about all six proposals, come down to the Southeast Area Farmers’ Market. Representatives from the League of Women Voters will be on hand to register people to vote, explain ID requirements and share the pros and cons of all candidates and ballot initiatives. The market takes place at Gerald R Ford Middle School, Saturdays through October from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.