Claire McClinton: Labor Leader, Water Warrior, and Champion of Democracy
Claire McClinton was born and raised in Flint, Michigan, and is a UAW retiree who comes from a family of autoworkers. She has been in the thick of the battle for labor rights and against poverty in her city for decades, and she is currently in the thick of the fight for safe, clean water for all. Her work analyzes what the poisoning of a city's water — and the toxic system behind it — means for the entire country. She will discuss the underlying conditions that have given rise to the poisoning — the profound changes in the economy that has eliminated jobs and devastated former industrial cities. She will also speak about the new model of corporate dictatorship in Michigan that has destroyed democracy as it takes over cities and towns and schools, silencing workers while taking over public assets like water. McClinton argues that it was the system of governor-appointed emergency managers that ushered in the change in Flint's water to the toxic Flint river, poisoning an entire American city. In addition, McClinton will discuss the kind of new society that there could be if the new technology that is today displacing so many workers is used for everyone's benefit.