Hope and pride in both our political process and the people who stand for election has been eroded and tested – to an extreme. Is our system broken? Can it be fixed? We seem to have reached a low point in our nation’s history; a time where so many people are considering not going to the polls, not voting, and not exercising our democratic right. If we hope to fix and strengthen our democracy we must show ourselves, and the world that people still have power, and that our system can be fixed and used for good.
We want to introduce you to an incredible Climate Mama, Pramilla Malick, who is running for state office in New York State’s 42nd district. Pramilla believes we can fix our system and that she can and will be part of the change. Taking on an incumbent who was running unopposed, Pramilla gives us hope and inspiration that the best can rise to the surface and that we can not only overcome the morass we have become mired in, but that we can make our world – locally, nationally and globally a better and a more hopeful place – a place where change for the good does happen.
Parmilla is a busy mother of four, who works in the information technology sector and has always been active in her community. But in 2011, when a gas compressor station was being built in her New York town, she not only got curious she took action. Pramilla began speaking out, insisting on facts about what this would mean to the health and welfare of people living near the compressor station. Pramilla organized her community to demand answers too. She helped her neighbors have their voices heard in federal court in Washington DC and she has selflessly helped other towns and neighborhoods around the country learn more about the health and environmental impacts of gas infrastructure. Pramilla continues to show us how each of us can make a difference. She embodies our Climate Mama motto: “Tell the truth, actions speak louder then words, and don’t be afraid.”
Along her journey Pramilla has spoken at local and national forums, she has marched in rallies, she has worked with educators, scientists and politicians to bring the facts and the truth to the surface. Pramilla has also been a leader in non-violent direct action, raising attention to our climate crisis. Pramilla fasted for days in front of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in Washington, DC, bringing a face and a mother’s voice to the impacts of our energy choices, and the critical crossroads we face as a country. She has also put her body on the line and has been arrested standing up for her beliefs; defending our future and now. Pramilla has helped so many connect the dots between justice, income inequality, our health, the environment, our energy choices and climate change. Pramilla is everywhere demanding the truth and she never takes no for an answer. Parmilla is the example we can point to when we talk to our children about people running for elected office. We can tell them: “This is who you can look up to.”
We know that there are many amazing Climate Mamas and Papas around the country, who – like Pramilla – are actively running for office and haven’t given up. These people, your neighbors and friends, likely do not have the media spotlight shining on them. But they are there, asking for our vote – willing and able to make our system stronger and better; support them, help them get elected.
Wherever you live in our country, find out who is running for office in your district – not just at the national level, but also at the state and local levels too. Attend one of their debates, peruse their website, call their office and ask questions. While there is only one Pramilla, there are many people running for office that deserve our vote, our time and our energy. Be an example for your children, take them to your polling station and let them watch you vote. Show them there are good people in our country who will work to champion and create real policies that will put people to work, protect our children’s health, our water and our air, and work directly to address the climate crisis we face.
Are you registered to vote? Is your neighbor, your friend, your voting age child? If not make sure they register. We can’t be a part of the change unless we all participate.