Utah Women Legislators: Say “NO” to More Nuclear Testing

Legislation led by women of Utah’s House of Representatives saw action on Monday, March 8th, ironically and appropriately on International Women’s Day.  The legislation:  HR4 Resolution Urging Ratification of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty.  Under the leadership of three women legislators, the Utah House of Representatives unanimously voted to support the resolution and urged the Senate to do the same.  The message is loud and clear:  Say “NO” to More Nuclear Testing.

Kudos to these women and all Utah legislators supporting this resolution.  Future generations survival depend on actions that like this that are a move to a more healthy and peaceful world.

Women’s Action Network for New Directions (WAND) released this memo yesterday:

March 10, 2010

On Monday, the Utah House of Representatives unanimously voted for a resolution urging the US Senate to ratify the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT).

WiLL (Women Legislators Lobby) member and the resolution’s lead sponsor, Rep. Jen Seelig, (D-Salt Lake City), did an excellent job championing the CTBT and garnering unanimous support for the resolution. It is hoped that the treaty will be considered and ratified by the US Senate in 2011.

The support for CTBT has been growing throughout the country, and it is a particularly personal cause for Utah’s ‘downwinders’. Winds blew fallout from the nuclear weapons testing site in Nevada over into Utah, causing devastating health problems.

Rep. Trisha Beck (D-Sandy) reminded her colleagues of a pamphlet distributed decades ago by the U.S. government saying that the nuclear-test site in Nevada was safe and did not cause illness. But, by 1990, the federal government had passed the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act to aid those who had been harmed by above- and below-ground testing that continued through the Cold War. In explaining her commitment to CTBT ratification, Rep. Beck said, “Preventing nuclear testing by detonation in the future is the best way of memorializing those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the past.”

Read article written by the Salt Lake Tribune

The passage of this resolution in the Utah state legislature is further proof that there is strong bipartisan support for the ratification of the CTBT. Once people learn the facts, they realize this treaty will make us safer and prevent tragedies like the ones experienced by families all over Utah who were victims of effects from testing.

We’re proud to report that three WiLL members were so closely involved in this effort (rep. Jen Seelig, Rep. Trisha Beck, and Rep. Becky Edwards). Representative Trisha Beck stated that the training and information she received at the WiLL and WAND national conference helped ensure that she was prepared to present all the facts her colleagues needed to be convinced to vote for the resolution.

How did they do it? WiLL members Rep. Beck and Rep Edwards issued a statement on the effects of the nuclear testing in support of the resolution. http://www.wand.org/BeckEdwardsStatement.pdf

For more information on the resolution, access to the bill language, vote count, and more-go here: http://le.utah.gov/~2010/htmdoc/hbillhtm/HR0004.htm

For more information on the CTBT see WAND’s “Can We Clear the Nuclear Shadow” Action Guide (http://le.utah.gov/~2010/htmdoc/hbillhtm/HR0004.htm) and The Project for the CTBT website (http://www.projectforthectbt.org/)

WAND and WiLL are thrilled that the dedication of our Utah members and colleagues has paid off. With hard work and cooperation we have taken a positive step forward.

Although there is still much to do, this resolution is proof that nuclear weapons testing affects everyone- and that ratification of the CTBT is a concern for all, no matter your political ties.
“Preventing nuclear testing by detonation in the future is the best way of memorializing those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the past”
-Utah Representative Trisha Beck

(cross-posted to Utah Legislature Watch)


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