• San Jose Plastic Bag

    Education & Outreach Efforts

In the course of this work, it has become very clear that a significant amount of education work is needed to be done to break down geographic and issue silos. Most elected officials considered preemption a locally-driven effort, not realizing that nationally-connected funders, often working through the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and other corporate interests, were pushing the same preemption bills through different state legislatures at the same time. Legislators, unaware of the corrosive effect of preemption on local democracy, were willing to use preemption as a bargaining chip to move bills.

Advocates working on advancing individual policies such as minimum wage hikes or bans on plastic bag bans were unaware that the same preemption tactic was being used to block progress across a broad range of issues or that their efforts to enact economic, health and safety policies were being reframed as a struggle for liberty against the “oppressive” local regulation of business.

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