NEW ORLEANS (July 31, 2010) – There are a few rumors circulating about the Women of the Storm campaign to restore the Gulf. The rumors misrepresent facts and bring up two issues that we would like to clarify:
- the funding source for Women of the Storm and the Restore the Gulf campaign, and
- the idea that this campaign is an attempt to shift Gulf Coast restoration costs from oil companies to American taxpayers.
Here are the facts:
Women of the Storm funded the Restore the Gulf initiative independently, using no money from America‚Äôs Wetland Foundation or any oil companies. Women of the Storm is supported through contributions from individuals, corporations and foundations. The organization has never received direct funding from any oil company or from America‚Äôs Wetland Foundation. While America’s Wetland Foundation is a strategic partner, it has no influence on development of Women of the Storm‚Äôs strategy, content, publications or projects. We simply share the goal of drawing attention to coastal restoration.
Women of the Storm is not asking for, nor does it expect, American taxpayers to pay for damage caused by other parties to the Gulf, its coastline or wetlands. Our petition does not specify a public or private funding source, only that we request a restoration plan to be funded and implemented. It will ultimately be up to Congress and the White House to determine how the plan for restoration is fully funded. However, nothing in our campaign is intended to absolve any entity from its responsibility for funding restoration of the damages it has caused.
Celebrity participation in the Restore the Gulf campaign does not imply support for, or endorsement of, any organization or of any other message than as expressed in the Restore the Gulf public service announcement.
Women of the Storm, founded in January, 2006, is a non-political, non-partisan group of diverse women from metropolitan New Orleans and south Louisiana. The common bond among these women is their passion to rebuild their homes, businesses and communities. Women of the Storm operates under the umbrella of a 501-c-3 organization; it is managed by a 13-member executive committee.