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Back from the Nuclear Brink Petition Warrant Article to Appear on Barrington Ballot

No one wants to think about the threat of nuclear war. However, the expiration of the Iran nuclear deal and the U.S. withdrawal from the INF treaty, in addition to increased tensions in the Middle East have caused renewed concern about the devastation that nuclear war would cause. And with more than 13,000 nuclear weapons stockpiled in nine countries, concerned citizens have come together to take action across the country including in New Hampshire.

In recent months, resolutions calling for steps to reduce the risk of nuclear war have been adopted by voters in Exeter, Lee, New London, Warner, Peterborough, and Alstead, plus by City Councils in Dover, Portsmouth, Durham, and Keene. Similar resolutions have been taken up by towns and cities throughout the U.S. as well as state legislatures in Maine, New Jersey, Oregon, and California. Now it’s Barrington’s turn.

A group of concerned Barrington citizens has petitioned to place a “Back from the Brink” warrant article on the Barrington Town ballot this March. The warrant article is a resolution calling on the U.S. elected officials to take the following steps to prevent nuclear war:

  • Renouncing the option of using nuclear weapons first;
  • Ending the sole, unchecked authority of the president to use nuclear weapons;
  • Taking U.S. nuclear weapons off hair-trigger alert;
  • Canceling the plan to replace the entire U.S. nuclear weapons arsenal with enhanced weapons (at an estimated cost $1.7 trillion); and
  • Actively pursuing a verifiable agreement among nuclear-armed states to eliminate their nuclear arsenals.

Petition warrant articles have had proven results in impacting state and national issues. Petition warrant articles regarding large groundwater withdrawals helped to stop the USA Springs water bottling plant from withdrawing more than 350,000 gallons of water a day in Nottingham, NH. In addition, warrant articles in hundreds of NH, Massachusetts and Vermont towns put the nuclear weapons “freeze” movement on the national agenda in 1982.

Hundreds of health, environmental and religious organizations have joined to support the “Back from the Brink” movement including The Unitarian Universalist Association, the Presbyterian Church, Pax Christi USA, the Union of Concerned Scientists, Physicians for Social Responsibility, Sierra Club, Veterans for Peace, the American Friends Service Committee, and 350.org.

An information session on the proposed Barrington warrant article will be held on Thursday, January 23rd from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at the Barrington Public Library. In addition, the warrant article will be discussed at the Town Deliberative Session on Saturday, February 1st at the Barrington Middle School.