Power Plants

Fixing What's Broke: why Congress must support a Just Transition for miners with black lung and communities

A new report from Kentuckians For The Commonwealth describes ways Kentuckians are organizing to demand action from Congress – and especially from Senator Mitch McConnell – in support of a Just Transition for miners with black lung disease, retired and laid off miners, and

Fix What's Broke: Why Congress Must Support a Just Transition for Miners and Communities

KFTC members deliver petitions in support of the RECLAIM Act to the office of Sen. Mitch McConnell

This report, published by KFTC in October 2018, outlines actions Congress must take to support a Just Transition for our miners and communities, including strengthening the Black Lung Disability Trust Fund, passing the RECLAIM Act to create jobs restoring damaged land and waterways, and protecting miners' pensions.

Local black lung resolution is picking up steam in Eastern Kentucky

Knott, Letcher, Rowan and Pike counties became the 6th, 7th, 8th, and 9th local governments in eastern Kentucky to pass a local resolution calling on members of Congress to pass several bills needed to help sick, disabled, retired, and unemployed coal miners and their communities. The fiscal courts in Letcher and Knott counties took the unanimous action at their respective monthly meetings on October 15th, and Pike and Rowan counties acted the next day.

Advocates say other local governments will soon follow their example. The resolution was first adopted by the City of Benham in Harlan County in September. That action was followed quickly by local governments in the cities of Jackson, Morehead, and Whitesburg, and in Breathitt, Knott, Letcher, and Pike counties. The resolution is expected to be considered at upcoming meetings in Floyd, Whitley, and Harlan counties, among other places. (Update: Floyd County became the 10th KY community to pass the resolution on October 18th!)

City of Jackson Black Lung / RECLAIM / Pension Resolution

In October 2018 the City of Jackson, Kentucky in Breathitt County unanimously passed a local resolution calling on Congress to pass the RECLAIM Act, strengthen the Black Lung Disability Trust Fund, and protect the pension fund that supports miners who worked for coal companies that have since gone bankrupt.

KFTC members are taking part in a week of climate action in California

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Seven members and two staff of KFTC are in San Francisco right now, participating in a week of climate actions called Solidarity to Solutions (Sol2Sol for short), aimed at bringing grassroots voices and solutions to the forefront during a major global climate summit that is being hosted by California Governor Jerry Brown and attended by many corporate and state leaders. The Kentuckians are among 500 grassroots delegates organized by It Takes Roots, a collection of four important networks, including the Climate Justice Alliance, Right To The City, Grassroots Global Justice, and the Indigenous Environmental Network.

The Sol2Sol week has been planned with the following goals: "To serve and be in solidarity with the leadership of communities in the Bay Area, across the state, and around the world; to challenge, expose and stop the massive subsidies being handed to multi-national corporations that are violating and destroying our families, ecosystems, and climate; to move public funds to repair, restore and protect Mother Earth and all her peoples; to end the epidemic of disaster capitalism, and redirect stolen wealth to the service, solidarity, and support of communities who are developing place-based solutions to address the root causes of climate change, poverty, and the crisis of democracy."

On Saturday, the nine KFTC members joined with more than 30,000 others in a large and boisterous march in downtown San Francisco, organized by the People's Climate Movement. 

"I'm honored to be here," said Alexa Hatcher from Bowling Green. "Yesterday was about connecting to one another. Everyone was taking care of each other. We were marching with a single purpose and that's to build solidarity where corporations and government powers have historically worked to keep us apart. We are not fighting against each other for scarce resources anymore. We're coming together against a common enemy that has worked to keep us silent and dependent to build a better future for us all."

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