An Cpen LeLLer from ueLrolL 8ellglous Leaders and Allles

!uly 28, 2014

Ho, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters
Let the one who has no money, come… (Isaiah 55:1)

Friends in Faith and Fellow Citizens:

In our traditions water is a free grace, part of the great gift that underlies all creation. We drink it as life
itself. We wade through it to freedom. And in conversion we are immersed and sprinkled and cleansed.
We wash our feet, so to pray. In season we know to honor it even by fasting from it. It is the lifeblood of
the planet, circulating as river and rain. Water is the very emblem of the commons, what we hold together
as one. We share it beholden to local indigenous peoples who understood, understand this deeply. For
governments which serve the people, a water system is a public trust, held in trust for this generation and
those to come. For the United Nations access to clean potable water is counted a human right.

In Detroit the largest basin of fresh water in the world flows by us through the river, “the strait.”
But in Detroit, under emergency management, as many as 150,000 homes are threatened with shut-off, up
to 3,000 per week, largely by private contractors. People, including children, the elderly and infirm, wake
up in the morning to find themselves unable to drink, cook, wash, or flush toilets. In fact, two thirds of
these homes are occupied by children. People without water fear losing their children to protective
services. They can be driven from their homes, their neighborhood, their city.

On June 18, 2014 a complaint charging a violation of human rights was filed with the United Nations.
Three Special Rapporteurs have already responded in a written statement, stressing the urgency of the
situation: “Disconnection of water services because of failure to pay due to lack of means constitutes a
violation of the human right to water and other international human rights.”

As religious leaders and communities we join our voices to say: In the name of humanity stop the shut-

To Detroiters we say, alert, defend and protect your neighbors from shut-off. To Faith communities we
say, become stations of water distribution (for information and guidance on this call 1-844-42WATER),
as well as places of education, community and resistance. To Water workers, we say refuse to cut off your
fellow citizens. To the Water Board, we say reverse this inhuman policy: turn their water back on. To the
City Council, we say stop compounding this travesty with rate increases and other complicity. Revive and
implement the Water Affordability Program. To the Governor we say: cease privatization and call off this
action taken under emergency management.

To our God we pray, defend the children, the least, the poor. Help us to do so this day. Let your justice
roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever flowing stream.


8L. 8ev'd Wendell n. Clbbs, !r. 8lshop, Lplscopal ulocese of Mlchlgan
8lshop ueborah Lleder klesey, 8lshop of Lhe Mlchlgan Area of 1he unlLed MeLhodlsL Church
8lshop 1homas CumbleLon, Archdlocese of ueLrolL
8ev. ur. Campbell LoveLL, Conference MlnlsLer, Mlchlgan Conference unlLed Church of ChrlsL
ur. SLephen Murray, ÞresldenL, Lcumenlcal 1heologlcal Semlnary
ur. kenneLh Parrls, uean - Lcumenlcal 1heologlcal Semlnary

8ev. !oAnn WaLson, AssoclaLe ÞasLor, WesL Slde unlLy Church
8ev. 8lll Wylle-kellermann, SL. ÞeLer's Lplscopal
8ev. Charles Wllllams lll, PlsLorlc klng Solomon 8apLlsL Church, naLlonal AcLlon neLwork
Sr. Clorla 8lvera, lPM, CreaL Lakes 8loneers ueLrolL
8ev. Þaul Þerez, ulrecLor of Mlsslon and !usLlce LngagemenL, ueLrolL Conference unlLed MeLhodlsL
Sr. Mary Lllen Poward, 8SM, SlsLers of Mercy, ueLrolL
ur. Þaul von Ceyen, Soclal !usLlce laclllLaLor, ueLrolL MeLropollLan AssoclaLlon, u.C.C.
ur. !lm Þerklnson, Þrofessor, Lcumenlcal 1heologlcal Semlnary
la. 1homas Lumpkln, uay Pouse- ueLrolL CaLhollc Worker
8roLher !erry SmlLh, LxecuLlve ulrecLor, Capuchln Soup klLchen
8ev. uavld 8ullock, CreaLer SL MaLLhews Mlsslonary 8apLlsL Church, Change AgenL ConsorLlum
8ev. uenlse Crlebler, ueLrolL (ÞasLor, 1sL unlLed Church of ChrlsL, 8lchmond)
ueLrolL CaLhollc ÞasLoral Alllance
Mlchlgan Concerned ÞasLors
8lshop WalLer SLarglll,
8ev. Louls lorsyLhe, ÞleasanL Crove Mlsslonary 8apLlsL Church
8ev. MaLLhew 8ode, ueLrolL LuLheran CooperaLlve Þarlsh
8ev, Melanle Cary, ueLrolL 8enalssance ulsLrlcL SuperlnLendenL, unlLed MeLhodlsL Church
8ev. Ldwln 8owe, 8eLlred pasLor, ueLrolL Conference unlLed MeLhodlsL Church
8ev. Maurlce 8udds, CreaLer ML. 1abor Mlslonary 8apLlsL Church
Sr. nancy SylvesLer, lPM, ÞresldenL, lnsLlLuLe for Communal ConLemplaLlon and ulalogue
8ev. 8aye Landy, Shrlne of Lhe 8lack Madonna u.C.C.
8ev Cary 8enneLL, Shrlne of Lhe 8lack Madonna u.C.C.
8ev. ÞaL klrby, Shrlne of Lhe 8lack Madonna u.C.C.
la. norman 1homas, Sacred PearL 8C
8ev. Wlllle Walker, Love[oy Church of Cod ln ChrlsL
8ev. lrank !ackson, MeLropollLan AML Zlon Church
8ev. Þ.!. Anderson u.Mln., Space for Crace lellowshlp CenLer u.C.C.
8e. Charles Wllllams Sr., PlsLorlc klng Solomon 8apLlsL Church
Zwadle Chalmers, Shrlne of Lhe 8lack Madonna u.C.C.
klm 8edlgan, 1heology uepL. unlverslLy of ueLrolL Plgh School, Sec. Þax ChrlsLl Mlchlgan
8ev. ÞeLer kleln, Church of Lhe Messlah, ueLrolL
ur. uaryll 1oLLy,
Sr. 1herese 1erns, lPM, Þeacemakers, lmmaculaLe PearL of Mary SlsLers & AssoclaLe
Sr. CaLhey ueSanLls, ueLrolL CaLhollc ÞasLoral Alllance
Sr. Þaula CaLhcarL, lPM, CreaL Lakes 8loneers ueLrolL
8ev. Marcla L. Ledford, ÞrlesL-ln-Charge, La lglesla ueLrolL
la. 8ay SLadmeyer ClM Cap, ÞasLor, SL. Charles 8orromeo Church ueLrolL
Sr. !udlLh Mouch, 8SM, MSn, SlsLers of Mercy, ueLrolL
Sr. LllzabeLh WaLers, lPM, MeLa Þeace 1eam
8ev. CourLney Wllllams, 8rlghLmoor AldersgaLe uMC
8ev. !ohn 1alk, ChrlsL Church Lplscopal ueLrolL
8ev'd Canon L. Mark SLevenson, uomesLlc ÞoverLy Mlssloner, Lplscopal Church
8ev. 1homas P. ÞrlesL, 8edeemer uMC
8ev. Mlchael !ohnson, ueLrolL LuLheran CooperaLlve Þarlsh
8ev. Llndsay Anderson, ueLrolL LuLheran CooperaLlve Þarlsh
8ev. kevln !ohnson, Calvary ÞresbyLerlan
ur. !ames Waddell, Lcumenlcal 1heologlcal Semlnary
8ev. ÞaLrlck Cehagan, ueLrolL LuLheran CooperaLlve Þarlsh
Llder Leslle MaLhews, Þrayer WlLh llre MlnlsLrles
LLhan uruLchas SL. Þaul u.C.C. 1aylor

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8ev. Loulse CLL Senlor ÞasLor, CongregaLlonal Church of 8lrmlngham, u.C.C.
urew uowns, 8ecLor, SL. Þaul's Lplscopal Church, SL. Clalr
klml 8legel, ÞasLor, unlLarlan unlversallsL Church, SouLhfleld
8ev. Susan k. 8ock, Crace Lplscopal Church, MounL Clemens
kaLe McCuLchen, 1rlnlLy Lplscopal Church, 8ellevllle
!udlLh Lrb, SL. Clare's Lplscopal Church, Ann Arbor
!ean-Þlerre Seguln, CanLerbury Pouse Ann Arbor
Margo SLrakosch, CanLerbury Pouse Ann Arbor
Mary Wessel Walker, CanLerbury Pouse Ann Arbor
Clara 8osak-Schroeder, CanLerbury Pouse Ann Arbor
8ev. 8ea lraser-SooLs
Ann Lvans Larlmore, Lplscopal Church of Lhe lncarnaLlon, ÞlLLsfleld 1wp.
Wllllam Pale, ÞrlesL ln Charge, SL. Luke's, Allen Þark & ChrlsL Lhe klng, 1aylor
kaLhy 8raun, Lplscopal Church of Lhe lncarnaLlon, Ann Arbor
MarLha 8abauL, l.P.M., Þeace 1eam, ServanLs of Lhe lmmaculaLe PearL of Mary
8ev. Ceorge CovlnLree, ÞasLor, SL. MaLLhew's uMC, Llvonla
8ev. ChrlsLlne Pumphrey
8ev, Susan ?omans
8ev. kelsay Þarker, ÞasLor, 1rlnlLy LuLheran Church, 8lchmond
SlsLer CaLherlne ueClercq, WesL 8loomfleld, Ml
8arLosz kumar, ulrecLor of MovemenL ÞollLlcs, Mlchlgan unlLed
Llder Leslle MaLLhews, lalLh CoordlnaLor, Mlchlgan unlLed
8ev. Ceorge CovlnLree, SL. MaLLhew's uMC, Llvonla, Ml
8ev Þaul Melrose 8eLlred ueLrolL Conference, unlLed MeLhodlsL Church
8ev. 8ahlm Shabazz, ÞasLor. Saglnaw WesL Mlchlgan Avenue unlLed MeLhodlsL Church

8ev. 8.!. Pronek, ÞropheLlc lnLegrlLy laclllLaLor, Mlchlgan Conference, u.C.C.
Þax ChrlsLl Mlchlgan
8ev. !lm kellermann, 8eLlred unlLed MeLhodlsL Clergy
Charles W. Mlllar, Þerry, Ml
Mlchael !. AnLon, 8eLlred LLCA pasLor, PasLlngs, Ml
8ev. LllzabeLh Morrls uownle
ulane Polley norLh WesLmlnsLer ÞresbyLerlan - Lanslng
SlsLer Ann 8emkus, CÞ, Adrlan uomlncans SlsLers
8ev. kelsay C. Þarker, 1rlnlLy LuLheran Church, LLCA, 8lchmond, Ml
Sr. 8arbara Cervenka, C.Þ., Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
ChrlsLlne MaLLhews, CÞ, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
Marllyn 8arneLL, CÞ, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
ÞaLrlcla n. 8enson, CÞ, Þh.u., Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
SlsLer Mary CaLherlne Cagllano, CÞ, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
SlsLer 8lLa SchllLz, CÞ, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
SlsLer 8arbara Chenlcek, CÞ, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
SlsLer MargareL karam, C.Þ., Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
SlsLer Sara lalrbanks, CÞ, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
8lLa SchllLz, CÞ, lnal SLudlo/Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
SlsLer !eanlne 8olvln, CÞ, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
SlsLer !ean Porger, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers
SlsLer Carol !ohannes, C.Þ., Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers, SL. Mary's SLudenL Þarlsh, Ann Arbor
ChrlsLa Marslk, CÞ, Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers

ur. WalLer 8rueggemann, unlLed Church of ChrlsL
8ev. !ames Moos, LxecuLlve MlnlsLer, unlLed Church of ChrlsL, Cleveland
8ev. Llnda !aramlllo, LxecuLlve MlnlsLer, unlLed Church of ChrlsL, Cleveland
8ev. ur. Susan 1. Penry-Crowe, Ceneral SecreLary, 8oard of Church and SocleLy, unlLed MeLhodlsL Ch.
Mark A. !enklns 8ecLor, SL. !ames, keene, new Pampshlre
8ev. Marllyn Þagán-8anks, LxecuLlve ulrecLor, A !usL ParvesL
8ev. Csagyefo Sekou, lormaLlon and !usLlce, llrsL 8apLlsL Church ln !amalca Þlaln (8osLon, MA)
8lshop !ohn Selders, AmlsLad uCC, ParLford C1
8ev. nelson and !oyce !ohnson, 1he 8eloved CommunlLy CenLer, Creensboro, nC
8ev. ur. ShanLa Þremawardhana, Semlnary ConsorLlum for urban ÞasLoral LducaLlon
8ev. !oyce Pollyday, ÞasLor, Clrcle of Mercy, Ashevllle, nC
8ev. kazl !oshua, Allegheny College
ur. ?vonne uelk, founder CenLer for Afrlcan Amerlcan 1heologlcal SLudles, Chlcago
SlsLer Mary kay llanlgan, CSl, 8Lh uay CenLer for !usLlce, Chcago, lL
8ev. uanlel uale, WelllngLon Avenue unlLed Church of ChrlsL, Chlcago, lL
8ev. ur. !lm Moos, LxecuLlve MlnlsLer, Wlder Church MlnlsLrles, unlLed Church of ChrlsL
Sr. Corlnne llorek, CÞ, Cakland, CA
8ev. !ana 8. 8elsLer, knox ÞresbyLerlan Church, ClnclnnaLl CP
SlsLer 8lLa A. 8ozel, uaughLers of CharlLy, SL. Louls
8ev. Llnda !ohnson Seyenkulo, ÞasLor, 1rlnlLy LuLheran Church, Þark loresL, lL
!eff neuman-Lee, ÞasLor, Þrlnce of Þeace Church of Lhe 8reLhren, LlLLleLon Colorado
SlsLer Mary Crace Plgglns uC, uaughLers of CharlLy

lnsLlLuLe !usLlce 1eam, SlsLers of Mercy of Lhe Amerlcas
SlsLers of Mercy, WesL MldwesL !usLlce 1eam
Þax ChrlsLl Mlchlgan
Clobal AcLlon aL Mercy lnLernaLlonal AssoclaLlon SlsLers of Mercy
Mercy lnLernaLlonal AssoclaLlon aL Lhe un
Leadershlp 1eam of Lhe CongregaLlon of SL. !oseph
ueLrolL CaLhollc ÞasLoral Alllance
Adrlan uomlnlcan SlsLers

CC: ueLrolL ClLy Councll
ueLrolL 8oard of WaLer Commlssloners
Pomrlch Wrecklng, lnc
!udge SLephen 8hodes
Covernor 8lchard Snyder

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