To fix our broken systems, we need to fix the policies that allow them to remain broken. Far too often, corporations have a close hand in drafting the laws that govern their business, and they pressure policymakers to pass laws that will benefit their own bottom line regardless of the will of the people.
That’s not how our government should work. Government officials should make decisions based on what’s best for their constituents, not corporations. Food & Water Watch holds elected officials across the country accountable to do the right thing – and we’re not afraid to call them out when they don’t. The fact that we don’t take corporate contributions gives us the freedom to take strong stands, such as advocating for a ban on fracking.
Guiding the Right Policies
Even when policymakers have the right goals in mind, it’s not always easy to craft policies that help everyday people make sure their food and water are safe, or that help small farmers compete with big business. We push for policies that are both aggressive and effective – the policies we want and need, not just what conventional wisdom says is feasible.
The problems we face, from fracking to food safety, are as nuanced as they are serious. Our policy experts examine new legislation from every angle to understand what effects it would have in the real world. We won’t support a bill that claims to do the right thing but actually contains clauses that only support industry aims or undermine its own goals. Instead, we’ll tell policymakers what precisely needs to change to make the bill effective.
How We Advocate
We’re the watchdog that keeps an eye on laws that affect your food and water. When a new bill is introduced at the federal or state level, or when new regulations are drafted, we review it line by line to understand how it will help or hurt your food and water. Sometimes the bill or regulation can be changed to make it stronger. Sometimes there’s no way it can be beneficial to everyday people, and we’ll explain exactly why.
Then we respond. When agencies request comments on new regulations, we submit strong recommendations based on our analysis, and recruit concerned people like you to add your comments as well. When Congress or state legislatures are considering new legislation, we get constituents to send emails and make phone calls expressing their opinions, and we give them the information they need to make an informed case.
We also work directly with legislators who are willing to stand up and protect their constituents’ access to healthy food and clean drinking water, and help them draft powerful, effective legislation. For example, in 2014 we partnered with Representative Mark Pocan (D-WI) to introduce the Protect Our Public Lands Act to ban fracking on federal lands.