Community Rights

Oct 12, 2023

CELDF’s Kai Huschke presents: Legalized Chemical Warfare – Community Resistance and Resilience to Protect the Future

CELDF’s Kai Huschke presents: Legalized Chemical Warfare – Community Resistance and Resilience to Protect the Future

In 2017 voters of Lincoln County adopted a community rights law banning aerial spray of pesticides by the corporate timber industry. CELDF was involved in assisting in the drafting of the law along with supporting the effort to get it adopted. In 2019 the courts, at the behest of the timber industry, overturned that law leaving public health and… Read more »

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Community Rights, Democratic Rights, Events, Extraction & Pollution, Rights of Nature

Aug 22, 2023

Trust the Children, Not the System

Trust the Children, Not the System

Featured photo: The plaintiffs in Held v. State of Montana walking and chatting outside the courthouse. (Photo: Robin Loznak) It will take an extended commitment to community organizing to expand the Held ruling into tangible relief as a vital state constitutional protection for nature. The 16 child plaintiffs in Held v. State of Montana, the Children’s… Read more »

Read More | Blogs, Chemical Trespass, Community Rights, Corporate 'Rights', Democratic Rights, Extraction & Pollution, Rights of Nature

Jul 31, 2023

Local Governments Are Blocking Ballot Initiatives at the Behest of Corporations

Local Governments Are Blocking Ballot Initiatives at the Behest of Corporations

Feature photo by Paul Vernon AFP via Getty Images In 1979, the children’s educational television series Schoolhouse Rock! broadcast a now-classic episode titled “Three Ring Government” about the three branches of the U.S. government — executive, legislative and judicial. “No one part can be more powerful than the other,” proclaimed the narrator, who explains that our system of government… Read more »

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, Democratic Rights, Rights of Nature

Jul 3, 2023

Workers’ Rights are Part of the Community Rights Movement

Workers’ Rights are Part of the Community Rights Movement

July 19, 2023, UAW Region 2B Leadership Institute at the Walter and May Reuther UAW Family Education Center in Onaway, Michigan On July 19, 2023, CELDF’s Tish O’Dell will be presenting at the UAW Region 2B Leadership Institute at the Walter and May Reuther UAW Family Education Center in Onaway, Michigan. The goal of this conference is to… Read more »

Read More | Community Rights, Democratic Rights, Events, Worker Exploitation

May 1, 2023

Toledo voters approved a bill of rights for Lake Erie. A group wants the same for the Ohio River

Toledo voters approved a bill of rights for Lake Erie. A group wants the same for the Ohio River

Feature photo by Bill Rinehart/WVXU “An advocacy group wants Cincinnati to recognize the right of the Ohio River to thrive. Members of Citizens for the Rights of the Ohio River Watershed are circulating a petition to get an amendment to Cincinnati’s charter on the ballot. Susan VonderHaar says CROW members want to give the river a seat… Read more »

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Community Rights, Community Wires, Corporate Agriculture, Democratic Rights, Extraction & Pollution, Issues, News, News from the Grassroots, Rights of Nature

Apr 4, 2023

Wouldn’t You Say? – The Challenge of Movement Building

Wouldn’t You Say? – The Challenge of Movement Building

“It seems like legal rights for community and for nature would almost be unnecessary if our attitude toward the world were based on reciprocity, responsibility, and accountability instead of maximizing personal advantage.”

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, Democratic Rights, Rights of Nature

Mar 22, 2023

In Times of Increasing Uncertainty, We Already Have What We Need

In Times of Increasing Uncertainty, We Already Have What We Need

We must start trusting in ourselves and in our community members to be able to meet our needs, solve our problems and create truly participatory community-based forms of government and public spaces.

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, Democratic Rights, Rights of Nature

Mar 15, 2023

Watch the video: “Water is Us”

Watch the video: “Water is Us”

“Water Is Us” was moderated by ORCRN’s board member and CELDF organizer Kai Huschke. Joining him was: On February 22nd the ORCRN’s Webinar Wednesday meandered through a variety of water topics, from current conditions of water access and water quality to how the law sees water, to the growth of rights of nature to protect and preserve water, to… Read more »

Read More | Community Rights, Events, Extraction & Pollution, Multimedia, Resource Links, Rights of Nature, Water Privitization

Mar 3, 2023

Wouldn’t You Say? – From Rights of Nature to Right Relationship

Wouldn’t You Say? – From Rights of Nature to Right Relationship

We are used to extracting not only metallic ores and fossil fuels, but ourselves and our communities from the natural world, and yet we don’t notice the increasing distance placed between us and our natural habitat by the human-made environment.

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, Rights of Nature

Nov 8, 2022

Wouldn’t You Say? – What Do We Mean by “Community Rights?”

Wouldn’t You Say? – What Do We Mean by “Community Rights?”

Lakota advocate and water protector Debra White Plume (Wioweya Najin Wina), upon being introduced to the history of municipal subjugation in the United States during a Democracy School hosted by residents of the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota, remarked that “municipalities are the white man’s reservations. The only difference is, we know we’re on reservations.”

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, Democratic Rights, News from the Grassroots, Rights of Nature

Mar 22, 2022

Podcast with GrassRoot Ohio: Death by Democracy- Episode 2 – w/ Tish O’Dell

Podcast with GrassRoot Ohio: Death by Democracy- Episode 2 – w/ Tish O’Dell

Carolyn Harding with Tish O’Dell, a powerful voice for justice in Ohio, the US, and Globally. Tish has been a Community Organizer for CELDF (Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund) since 2012 assisting residents to organize rights-based initiatives in their communities in order to help them “make real” the just and sustainable communities they envision for… Read more »

Read More | Community Rights, Democratic Rights, Issues, News, News from the Grassroots, Publications, Resources

Sep 13, 2021

Corporation Demands $40,281.50 From Town For Passing Climate Ordinance

Corporation Demands $40,281.50 From Town For Passing Climate Ordinance

As climate change brings suffering across the globe, in New Hampshire Judge Martin Honigberg has sided with a local corporate actor who seeks financial retribution against the Town of Nottingham for the popular adoption of an ordinance recognizing a right of townspeople to a “climate system capable of sustaining human societies.” On September 1, 2021 the sole corporate actor, Brent Tweed, of G&F Goods, LLC submitted a $40,281.50 bill to the court for attorney fees.

Read More | Community Rights, News, News from the Grassroots, Press Releases

Jun 21, 2021

Ohio Residents Call On State Attorney General and 9 County Prosecuting Attorneys to Launch Criminal Investigations Into Radioactive Pollution in Waterways

Ohio Residents Call On State Attorney General and 9 County Prosecuting Attorneys to Launch Criminal Investigations Into Radioactive Pollution in Waterways

Under a 2002 law, introducing radioactive elements into Ohio drinking water is a felony offense.
Companies are violating this by spreading oil and gas waste ‘brine’ — proven by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources to contain radioactive concentrations that exceed federal and state standards — in critical watersheds. So are state actors, residents assert.

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Community Rights, News, Press Releases, Uncategorized

Jun 1, 2021

Newsletter: Confronting Law Schools

Newsletter: Confronting Law Schools

Law schools must reckon with the harm they have caused in perpetuating this oppressive system of law! Toward this end, CELDF has been honored to endorse a campaign to rename the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, named after former U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall. The justice, known for empowering corporations and the U.S. Supreme… Read more »

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, Corporate 'Rights', Democratic Rights, News

May 31, 2021

Newsletter: Building International Rights of Nature Solidarity

Newsletter: Building International Rights of Nature Solidarity

CELDF is honored to work in solidarity with a new French-speaking network to advance the Rights of Nature in Europe. The network includes Loire Parliament, Valentransition, A.R.B.R.E.S., id-eau, Notre Affaire à Tous and others.  “We are now working to grow the network with other similar organizations and communities active in the defense of the ecosystems… Read more »

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, News, Rights of Nature

May 24, 2021

Newsletter: Collaborating With Academia

Newsletter: Collaborating With Academia

It will take many minds to birth a new legal and political paradigm. Engaging students and educators is critical. Toward that end, CELDF’s Chad Nicholson recently helped teach a short Rights of Nature seminar. Markie Miller presented at the Public Interest Environmental Law Conference and at the University of Toledo. Lindsey Schromen-Wawrin is heading up… Read more »

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, News, Rights of Nature

May 20, 2021

CELDF Sponsors Nationwide Screenings of New Award-Winning Documentary ‘The People vs. Agent Orange’

CELDF Sponsors Nationwide Screenings of New Award-Winning Documentary ‘The People vs. Agent Orange’

The new award-winning documentary “The People vs. Agent Orange” is now screening in theaters near you! The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund is proud to sponsor limited nationwide screenings ahead of the national premiere on PBS, forthcoming in summer 2021. CELDF is sponsoring screenings in California, Florida, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, New York,… Read more »

Read More | Blogs, Chemical Trespass, Community Rights, Events, Issues, News, Uncategorized

Apr 26, 2021

Financial Threats to Rights of Nature Lawmaking

Financial Threats to Rights of Nature Lawmaking

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Michelle SanbornCommunity Environmental Legal Defense FundCommunity Organizermichelle@celdf.org603-524-2468 Corporate ‘person’ uses constitutional rights law to justify attorney fees from the Town of Nottingham, targeting people’s use of direct democracy for climate action. NOTTINGHAM, NH: Corporate personhood “rights” are once again being weaponized to financially punish and intimidate a local community that took a… Read more »

Read More | Community Rights, Press Releases

Apr 18, 2021

ADVISORY: Oral Arguments in Civil Rights Appeal Advancing Rights of Nature and Local Democracy in Ohio

ADVISORY: Oral Arguments in Civil Rights Appeal Advancing Rights of Nature and Local Democracy in Ohio

Oral arguments in a federal civil rights case against the State of Ohio have been scheduled. Plaintiffs from seven Ohio counties, representing Rights of Nature laws and other measures protecting local democracy from corporate special interests. Plaintiffs are petitioners for local initiative campaigns that were all successfully qualified various measures that were blocked from the ballot.

Read More | Community Rights, Democratic Rights, News, Press Releases

Mar 17, 2021

Clara Township Residents Move to Ban Frack Waste Dumping

Clara Township Residents Move to Ban Frack Waste Dumping

Clara Township residents move forward with a Home Rule Charter initiative to protect vital waterways and assert the democratic rights of the community. Nearly half of all registered voters have signed on in support of the measure. Roulette Oil and Gas LLC (ROGC) applied for a Class II Injection Well Permit.

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Community Rights, Issues, Press Releases

Feb 1, 2021

New Book! ‘The World We Need: Highlights, Stories and Lessons From America’s Unsung Environmental Movement’

New Book! ‘The World We Need: Highlights, Stories and Lessons From America’s Unsung Environmental Movement’

The World We Need offers a vivid look at the people protecting America’s communities against environmental degradation and racism. Their strategies for saving lives, protecting land, and creating opportunities provide a model for activists everywhere.

Read More | Community Rights, Democratic Rights, News, News from the Grassroots, Press Releases, Resources

Jan 18, 2021

Newsletter: New Hampshire Pamphlet

Newsletter: New Hampshire Pamphlet

To advance political education in the Granite State, the New Hampshire Community Rights Network (NHCRN) has compiled an in-depth pamphlet to explore a transformation of New Hampshire’s form of government.

Read More | Blogs, Community Rights, News, Water Privitization

Dec 24, 2020

‘The Courts Are a Sham’: New Hampshire Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Rights of Nature, Healthy Climate Arguments

‘The Courts Are a Sham’: New Hampshire Supreme Court Refuses to Hear Rights of Nature, Healthy Climate Arguments

New Hampshire Supreme Court Refuses to hear arguments on Rights of Nature and the right to a Healthy Climate. Amidst ecological catastrophe, movements for a paradigm shift in law have made global gains in 2020. Granite State judges have chosen to reject a request for a people’s defense of a municipal Rights of Nature and healthy climate law.

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Community Rights, Democratic Rights, News, Press Releases

Dec 15, 2020

BREAKING: Gas Company Files Federal Lawsuit To Overturn Small Pennsylvania Township’s Rights of Nature Law…Again

BREAKING: Gas Company Files Federal Lawsuit To Overturn Small Pennsylvania Township’s Rights of Nature Law…Again

Gas company PGE sues Grant Township over democratically enacted law. The PA Department of Environmental Protection also sued Grant in 2017, making this filing the third lawsuit against the Township (pop. 700) for trying to protect its drinking water.

Read More | Chemical Trespass, Community Rights, Corporate 'Rights', Democratic Rights, Extraction & Pollution, Issues, Press Releases & Blogs, Rights of Nature

Dec 11, 2020

Truthout: The American Petroleum Institute Is Working to Kill Voting on Local Measures

Truthout: The American Petroleum Institute Is Working to Kill Voting on Local Measures

Over the past five years, organizers in seven Ohio communities (three cities, four counties) have qualified ballot measures to recognize enforceable rights of ecosystems and human rights to water. All take the historic and bold step of elevating these basic rights above the legal privileges currently enjoyed by private corporations in the United States.

Read More | Community Rights, Corporate 'Rights', Corporate Agriculture, Extraction & Pollution, Issues, News, News from the Grassroots, Rights of Nature