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Tell Congress: Pass the Scientific Integrity Act

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The petition to Congress reads:

"Pass the Scientific Integrity Act."

    Tell Congress: Pass the Scientific Integrity Act

    As climate change grows increasingly dangerous, the last thing the government should be doing is censoring its own scientists. But the Trump administration is firing and reassigning scientists, preventing the release of key reports, altering findings, and stacking agencies with industry shills.

    The systematic attack on science and scientists threatens us all. Congress must act now to protect science.

    Tell Congress: Pass the Scientific Integrity Act.

    Since Trump’s election, the federal government has mounted over 200 documented acts of interference or suppression of science and scientists.1 Over three-quarters of the instances targeted climate scientists, whom Trump has said he doesn’t “believe.”2

    And these are only the events reported in the news. Scientists face pressure daily to conform their activities to Trump's ignorant world view. In a survey of federal scientists, 631 scientists reported that under the Trump administration, they were told to omit the phrase “climate change” from their work.3 Another 703 federal scientists said they self-censored by avoiding working on climate change or using the term.4

    The Scientific Integrity Act would prohibit political appointees from altering or suppressing scientific findings and give scientists final review over how agencies use their work.5 It aims to prevent lobbying groups and politicians from "intimidating, coercing or retaliating" against federal scientists. The bill would require agencies that fund science to institute scientific integrity policies to prevent political intervention in practicing science, sharing results and making personnel decisions.6

    Government scientists monitor our water and air quality, food safety, and drug risks. They sound the alarm on environmental and health risks before a crisis hits. And in the case of climate change, they are racing to understand an ongoing crisis and develop solutions. When they cannot do their work free of political interference, our world becomes less safe.

    Congress has the power to force the Trump administration to leave scientists alone and let them do their research – and communicate about it – without fear of losing their jobs. We need it to act to protect scientists and the future of our planet.

    Tell Congress: Pass the Scientific Integrity Act.

    References:

    1. Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, "Silencing Science Tracker," Columbia Law School, accessed May 17, 2019.
    2. Romany Webb and Lauren Kurtz, "Congress can stop the war on science," The Hill, Jan. 16, 2019.
    3. Michael Halpern, "The Scientific Integrity Act is Good for Science and Good for Government," Union of Concerned Scientists, March 13, 2019.
    4. Ibid.
    5. Ibid.
    6. Ibid.