Grassroots leaders call on Michiganders to support Sanders for universal health care, economic, racial justice
70 members of Michigan People’s Campaign (MPC), a statewide, grassroots organization working for economic and racial justice, jammed into a banquet hall in Southwest Detroit to announce their endorsement of Senator Bernie Sanders for President.
“We are endorsing Bernie Sanders for President because he will stand up for regular people, not billionaires and the one percent!” said Rev. Frank Jackson (above) of AME Zion Church in Detroit, “Bernie Sanders will take on the big money that’s corrupting our politics so our communities can have the things we deserve. We deserve quality health care as a human right, not a privilege. We deserve the right to a good job. We deserve a healthy planet that we can pass on to our children.”
MPC members overwhelmingly chose Sanders through a statewide vote of grassroots activists. Several of those leaders shared their personal stories.
Detroit resident, Debbi Adams shared the difficulties she went through when she was laid off and lost her health care in 2011, “It was bad enough that I was out of work, but to lose my health care was devastating. I couldn’t afford the thousands of dollars in premiums to buy my own insurance. I’m supporting Bernie Sanders because he cares about us and knows that health care should be available to everyone, not just people who can afford it.”
Detroiter, Micah Whittaker shared the difficulties of paying for college so she could achieve her dream of joining the foreign service, “It’s not just the outrageous cost of tuition. There are enrollment fees, over-priced books, and even application fees. I shouldn’t have to pay to put my name on a form! It shouldn’t be so hard to try and improve myself. That’s why I’m supporting Bernie Sanders-- he’s going to invest in students like me so we can all achieve our dreams.”
The group also heard from America Yahya, a first generation, Yemeni-American leader. “During the last election, I noticed that other Arab-Americans were being turned away from the polls because there weren’t any Arabic-speaking poll workers. I ended up spending hours at the poll translating so everyone in my community could vote. We need to stand up for voting rights, restore the Voting Rights Act, and make sure that everyone has the right to use their voice at the polls. That’s why I’m proud to support Bernie Sanders.”
The MPC members then took to their phones to begin texting their friends and get the vote out for Sanders.