ACLU of Michigan Urges Michigan House to Pass Water Shut Off Protection Act

Affiliate: ACLU of Michigan
December 15, 2020 8:00 am

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DETROIT – Today, with the state legislature back in session, the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan (ACLU) urges the Michigan House of Representatives to immediately pass critical legislation known as the Water Shut Off Protection Act during lame duck.

Senator Stephanie Chang (D-Detroit) introduced this legislation (Senate Bill 241), which the Michigan Senate passed last Thursday. The legislation would place a temporary moratorium on water shut offs through the end of March statewide for people who are unable to pay their water bill and also ensures water service is restored to any Michigander whose water is currently shut off. This is a stopgap measure to protect thousands of Michiganders who are facing financial hardships during the pandemic.

Bonsitu Kitaba, deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, has this reaction:

“We thank Senator Chang and colleagues for their leadership and bipartisan support of the Water Shut Off Protection Act. We are one step closer to critical relief for vulnerable Michiganders. All people must have clean, running water regardless of their income. Water is a human right before this pandemic ravaged our communities and it is a human right now. If we are serious about protecting Michiganders by ensuring no one’s water is shut off, our representatives must pass this necessary legislation now. With just days left in this session, lawmakers must act. Once this bill becomes law, we look forward to working closely with legislators on enacting a permanent water affordability plan for all Michiganders.”

Water is essential to everyone’s health and crucial in stopping the spread of COVID-19. The ACLU and its partners sent a letter to Michigan senators on Dec. 7, urging them to pass this legislation.

Background information on this legislation and the ACLU’s letter is at:

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