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Democracy School in Eugene

Community Rights Lane County along with the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund are bringing Democracy School to Eugene!

Lane County residents are threatened with a handful of corporate harms (aerial spraying), and are organizing to stop the toxic poisoning of their community. As part of our work, we are holding CELDF’s Democracy School – a stimulating and illuminating course that teaches residents and activists how to reframe exhausting and often discouraging single issue work (such as opposing fossil fuel extraction/transportation, aerial spraying, GMOs, etc.) in a way that we can confront corporate control and state preemption on a powerful single front: people’s inalienable rights.

WHERE: First United Methodist Church / 1376 Olive St. Eugene

WHEN: Friday, June 2nd, 6:00 – 9:00p.m / Saturday, June 3rd, 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m

You Must Register and PAY for this Event!

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Action YOU Can Take!

Do you want to help (and really don’t want to collect signatures), but aren’t sure what to do?

As an organization working towards a better place to live, we feel everyone must work towards that goal in their own way. So while some organizations are…

  • writing more protective laws in the places they live,
  • others are driving to Salem to talk with elected officials,
  • while others are out there standing in front of trucks!

We all do what we can, and we want to help YOU do your part by sharing this Action.

Ultimately we’d like to ban aerial spraying in all of Oregon. Working towards that goal, we’ll write letters of support for the legislative bills being introduced this session. And while we don’t hold our breathe that the legislature will save the day (give the people what they really want), we do want to support the efforts of those that work towards reforming the Forest Practices Act in any way.

Below is information on bills that were introduced. We’ve also provided a sample letter for you to send your elected official in Salem. If you don’t know who that is, find your Oregon legislator.


The Timber Aerial Spray Right to Know bill – SB 892

SB 892 | Summary: Requires filing notice with State Forestry Department of proposed aerial application of pesticide as planned forest management activity on privately owned forestland. | The original bill as introduced->> | -1 amendment->>

Statement of the problem
In Oregon, the law allows corporate timber companies to use helicopters to spray herbicides over their tree farms. Until 2015 Oregon had no protective no-spray buffer zones to protect people and pets on their home property or children at schools. Also, under Oregon law, aerial spray applicators don’t have to provide records of their pesticide use, which leaves agencies and the public unable to monitor the impacts of chemical use in forestry.

After a failure in the legislature, corporate interests interfered and the new rules require only a 60 ft. no-spray zone for homes and school buildings. Truly, this was a disappointing outcome after so much effort, and it is barely a band aid on a major hemorrhage. What’s needed is to ban aerial sprays on timber lands because of the extreme risk to human health, drinking water purity and impacts to wildlife.

The 2015 Legislature also refused to pass a law requiring the Dept. of Forestry to provide timely notification to residents, schools, medical and public facilities prior to aerial pesticide applications on nearby industrial timber land. Oregonians need timely notification, at the very least, to protect their children and pets, recognizing that livestock, gardens and drinking water will still be vulnerable.

SOLUTION
Until Oregon acts to ban aerial sprays, we must ensure the Legislature provides as many protections as possible to people impacted by aerial sprays. Oregon can start helping vulnerable rural families now by passing SB 892!

The Benefits of SB 892

SB 892 fixes two problems:

  • ADVANCED WARNING FOR AERIAL SPRAYS: Rural residents need a warning prior to an aerial spray. A warning will help residents ensure the safety of their family and pets. E-warnings can be issued by the FERNS Notification system, a web-based, centralized database of all forestry operations managed by the Oregon Department of Forestry. The FERNS system can send out e-notifications to anyone requesting timely notification.
  • REPORTING PESTICIDE USE: SB 892 requires a spray applicator to file spray records with the Dept. of Forestry within five days following a spray operation. The proposed rule is necessary because Oregonians have the right to know the extent of herbicide use in our watersheds, habitat lands and communities. Better communication would allow impacted communities and agencies to work collaboratively to minimize risk. Requiring the Spray Record uses existing regulatory infrastructure, such as FERNS and mandatory spray record keeping.

Introduced by Senator Michael Dembrow

 

Legislators who support it:
Chief Sponsors: Senator Michael Dembrow – Capitol Phone: 503-986-1723 | Email
Co-Sponsors: Rep. Paul Holvey – Capitol Phone: 503-986-1408 | Email

 

To be considered by the Senate Committee on  Environment and Natural Resources
Use this email: [email protected]. (Important!)

Also send individual emails to all 5 members of the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources to urge their strong support for SB 892.

  • Chair: Senator Michael Dembrow – Capitol Phone: 503-986-1723 | Email
  • Vice-Chair: Senator Alan Olsen – Capitol Phone: 503-986-1720 | Email
  • Member: Senator Herman Baertschiger Jr. – Capitol Phone: 503-986-1702 | Email
  • Member: Senator Floyd Prozanski – Capitol Phone: 503-986-1704 | Email
  • Member: Senator Arnie Roblan – Capitol Phone: 503-986-1705 | Email

Don’t forget to also write your own state legislators and urge their support.

Key point: The Oregon Legislature has stalled for too many years to take steps to help rural people get protection from aerial sprays (or give us what we really want- ban spraying). It is unethical for the Legislature to stall any longer.

  • The Oregon Department of Forestry has the technological capacity to send out advanced alerts 1 or 2 days prior to an aerial or ground spray.
  • A timber spray warning is so easy to do = Please just do it!

Sample Letter:

Dear Chair Dembrow and Members of the Senate Environment Committee,

As an Oregon voter, I’m in support of a total ban on aerial herbicide spraying in Lane County and eventually, all of Oregon. Until that day comes, I support the passage of SB 892 because it is will help rural residents have some modicum of protection against being caught outside when there is a nearby aerial spray. With modern technology that our state agencies already have, this is both simple and ethical. Please understand that this bill, while important and necessary, still doesn’t stop the predominant harm caused by aerial spraying. Farmers and their animals who both depend on clean water and soil will still be vulnerable as the sprays happen near them. Please pass SB 892 with a strong recommendation for adoption! This is about the right to private property and not having property trespass. If aerial herbicide spray is as safe as they say, why not alert us and let us know what is being sprayed? No harm – no foul, right? This is just a small step in the right direction. Ultimately, we citizens should be able to say “NO” to toxic practices occurring in our communities and near our homes and schools.

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We the People 2.0 – The Second American rEvolution!

Oregon Community Rights Network, along with Community Rights Lane County co-sponsor We the People 2.0.

Tuesday March 21stFlorence – City Lights Cinema, dinner @5pm, film @6pm

Thursday March 23rdCottage Grove – Healing Matrix, film @7pm

Friday March 24thEugene – First United Methodist Church, film @7pm.

There are more locations throughout Oregon! Click Here to learn more!

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Public Interest Environmental Law Conference (PIELC)

Community Rights Lane County will be at PIELC again. Find our table in the hallway, we’ll be next to other Community Rights Chapters from around Oregon!

There are two opportunities to learn more about Community Rights. CELDF is showing We the People 2.0 in the EMU Redwood Auditorium at 2:20 – 3:50pm.

Kai Huschke the Pacific Northwest Organizer for CELDF will be conducting a workshop – Growing Democracy with Community Rights in the EMU Room 146: Crater Lake North at 3:30-5:30.

Check HERE to see a list of recommended panels!

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Street Theater by Community Rights Lane County

Group holds rally against court case restricting ballot initiative rights

Before court on Friday, members of and supporters of CRLC gathered in front of the Courthouse to show voters what’s at stake – All in good humor!!

Read the Story Here!

Check out this video of Community Rights Lane County folks doing some street theater outside the Lane County Courthouse today!

Letting our community know that We the People intend to stay strong in defense of our constitutional right to the initiative power! Judge Karsten Rasmussen heard over 2 hours of argument, and will decide the outcome of the case in a few weeks. Stay tuned!

Thanks to everyone who performed and those that joined in to raise the voices of the We the People Choir!

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Advancing the Rights of Nature with Shannon Biggs

Shannon is a leading international speaker, author and activist in the growing movement for Rights of Nature. She is the Co-founder and Director of Movement Rights, which was born out of her 12 years at Global Exchange where she began the Community and Nature’s Rights Program. The author of Building the Green Economy: Success Stories from the Grass Roots and The Rights of Nature, Shannon leads “Democracy Schools” and Rights of Nature trainings throughout the country. She holds a Masters in Economics/Poli cs of Empire from the London School of Economics.

When: February 9th, 7pm
Where: Eugene Garden Club (1645 High)

Parking across the street!

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