Establish Environmental Rights in the NYS Constitution

“Each person shall have a right to clean air and water, and a healthful environment.”

CONCURRENT RESOLUTION OF THE SENATE AND ASSEMBLYproposing an amendment to article 1 of the constitution, in relation to the right to clean air and water and a healthful environment.  Section 1. Resolved (if the Senate concur), that article 1 of the constitution be amended by adding a new section 19 to read as follows:  S 19. ENVIRONMENTAL RIGHTS. EACH PERSON SHALL HAVE A RIGHT TO CLEAN AIR AND WATER, AND A HEALTHFUL ENVIRONMENT.

Many people are surprised that we do not already have the right to clean air and water or a healthful environment, but we do not. Together, we can change that. To get on a November ballot for us (“we the people”) to vote on it, this resolution must be passed twice by our representatives in the legislature, with an election in between. It does not require the Governor’s signature.

Once incorporated into the NYS Constitution, this visionary moral statement will have a beneficial influence on our shared environment for as long as this Constitution shall last. These words are vital for ourselves, our families, and our communities. The Assembly passed this bill during the last session but not the Senate. It’s up to both houses of the NY Legislature to pass it this year and again in 2021, so the people of New York can vote to make it part of our Constitution.