The problem of povertyMore than 46 million Americans live below the official poverty line—which is now approximately $22,314 for a family of four—and 16.4 million children are poor in this country. Inequality of wealth has reached record highs—it is greater than at any time since 1929. Growing portions of the nation’s wealth are concentrated in the possession of a small fraction of households, while more than one third of the U.S. population is trying to get by on incomes less than 200 percent of the federal poverty line—or about $44,000 for a family of four. Well before the current economic crisis, 6 million low-income households were paying more than half their income on rent and utilities, or lived in severely substandard housing. And the most recent data for 2010 revealed that 48.8 million people, including 16.2 million children, lived in a household struggling against hunger.
The Public Laboratory for Open Technology and Science (PLOTS) is a community which develops and applies open-source tools to environmental exploration and investigation. By democratizing inexpensive and accessible “Do-It-Yourself” techniques, Public Laboratory creates a collaborative network of practitioners who actively re-imagine the human relationship with the environment.The core PLOTS program is focused on “civic science” in which we research open source hardware and software tools and methods to generate knowledge and share data about community environmental health. Our goal is to increase the ability of underserved communities to identify, redress, remediate, and create awareness and accountability around environmental concerns. PLOTS achieves this by providing online and offline training, education and support, and by focusing on locally-relevant outcomes that emphasize human capacity and understanding.
In 2010, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a case called Citizens United v. FEC that corporations have a “right” to spend unlimited money influencing elections. Corporations are not people. Democracy is for people.
Government Reform The government should serve voters, not corporate special interests. Public Citizen works to empower ordinary citizens, reduce the influence of big corporations on government, open the government to public scrutiny, and hold public officials accountable for their misdeeds.
AboutPublic Citizen has been standing up to corporate power and holding government accountable since 1971. Visit our website at http://www.citizen.org/MissionWe represent you in the halls of power. Your support funds multiple public interest research and advocacy efforts: safe and effective health care, auto safety, good government, safe and sustainable energy, consumer safety, and fair, equitable trade and globalization. Why focus on a single issue? We do it all!Company OverviewSince 1971, Public Citizen has been a national, nonprofit public interest organization representing consumer interests in Congress, the executive branch and the courts. Website: www.Citizen.org Blog: www.CitizenVox.org Twitter: @Public_Citizen