Water Equity Clearinghouse

The People’s Water Board

Detroit, MI

The People’s Water Board is a coalition of 36 Southeast Michigan organizations working in anti-poverty, social justice, environmental, conservation, and faith based initiatives. Founded in 2008, this group works collectively to protect water sources from pollution, prevent excessively high water rates, end water privatization, and rework institutional measures that deny water and wastewater services to people unable to afford it.

Efforts to Advance Water Equity

The People’s Water Board has a multitude of goals that they work towards through policy advocacy and public pressure. First and foremost is a moratorium on Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD) water shutoffs against lower-income people, particularly vulnerable residents like infants, children, seniors, and persons with disabilities. The group is also working to ensure the restoration of service to all people whose water service has been shutoff.

The People’s Water Board also organizes to push DWSD to implement the original Detroit Water Affordability Plan. This plan would ensure that income-eligible Detroit residents can benefit from a customer-funded DWSD water affordability program.

While the People’s Water Board works largely at the local level, they also advocate for water affordability rather than assistance across all municipalities and at the national level.

Geographic Scale:
Type of Organization:
Pillar 1
Approach to Advancing Water Equity:
Community Organizing
Policy Development and Advocacy
Issues Addressed:
Water Quality