To draw attention to the effort to STOP GENERAL IRON, we announce a one-day Hunger Strike in Solidarity with all the Brave Activists Fighting to Stop General Iron.
Chicago Audubon and friends from other conservation organizations including Riverbank Neighbors and The Green Council of the 47th Ward will observe a one-day hunger strike on Monday, February 22 in solidarity with the environmental justice groups working to prevent General Iron from relocating in the Calumet area. The people, wildlife and wetlands of the Calumet area have borne more than their share of pollution, and it’s time for the City of Chicago to find a different way. We are using our platform to put pressure on Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Dr. Allison Arwady to do what is right. DENY the permit.
The one-day solidarity hunger strikers from our neighborhood organizations includes:
- Matt Rundquist, of the Green Council and Neighbors for Environmental Justice Advisory Board,
- Pete Leki, Waters School Ecology teacher and Riverbank Neighbors,
- Lisa Hish, of Riverbank Neighbors and the Green Council -statement- “I have the good fortune to breathe fresh clean air in my neighborhood as should my neighbors to the south. Deny the permit.”
- Ivan Handler, of the Green Council 47th Ward -statement- “This is how we express that we are hungry for environmental justice.”
- Michael Sewall of the Green Council,
- Jules Peterson-Green.. Green Council, Riverbank Neighbors, Waters Ecology,
- Heather Smith 1st grader Waters School Mom and Adjunct Professor, DePaul University Geography Department,
- Nick Anderson of the Lincoln Square Ravenswood Solidarity Network and
- 60 +people listed here: City-Wide page organized by Judy Pollock, Chicago Audubon Society
Solidarity can tip the scales away from injustice.
Background information about the hunger strike and issues
in the news…
Feb 18, 2021 WBEZ Hunger Strike Continues Over General Iron’s Move to Southeast Side. The Southeast Side of Chicago is home to the most industrial parts of the city, bearing the heaviest burden of pollution near homes, schools and parks.
Feb 17, 2021 Block Club Chicago Feds Tell City: Don’t Issue General Iron Permit Until Civil Rights Investigation Is Completed
Feb 14, 2021 The Guardian The Chicago plant that sparked a hunger strike amid environmental racism claims
Feb 11, 2021 Hunger Strike Against Southeast Side Metal Scrapper Reaches Eighth Day WTTW
Riverbank Neighbors is a Chicago community organization.
The riverbank in our neighborhood was eroded and full of trash before neighbors started to work together to clean it up and make it accessible.
The ancient ecosystem was all but wiped out on our land, but now the river path offers an experience of natural beauty. Our community leaders are stewards of the ecosystem, with deep ties to the North Branch Restoration Project. We gather seeds of precious, rare plants and spread them in protected areas. Workdays include maintaining the paths as education and work centered around maintaining this example of our ancient native Chicago ecosystem.
CPS Waters Elementary School students visit the riverbank as part of their studies with Ecology teacher, Pete Leki, who is also a longtime Riverbank Neighbor organizer, and one of our founders.
Countless volunteer groups have assisted in these efforts. Many many people have contributed to the beauty and we thank all of them.
We seek kindred spirits, who like to garden, gather seeds and learn the nuances of the ecosystem.
We invite artists, students, and community of all ages to come to our events, find a place for themselves in the project.