In a video posted to youtube yesterday, People in the Dominican Republic showed their disgust for smart meters forced on their homes and businesses, by bringing them back to the utility en masse, in an action reminiscent of Stop Smart Meters! 2010/ 2011 actions in Santa Cruz County, California. It appears that the main complaint here is the high bills, reported wherever smart meters are installed, but other issues- including a lack of democracy and transparency, privacy violations, and health effects- are also likely at issue. The translation is bad on this video- see below for English translation kindly provided by Maine Coalition to Stop Smart Meters and Boil the Frog Slowly.
Stop Smart Meters! proclaims our solidarity with the people of the Dominican Republic, and remind our readers that if we really want to be rid of these stupid meters, that mass direct action can achieve this goal where other methods fail.
Let’s return them together.
Smart meters are – after all- unwanted equipment forced on our homes and into our communities, and we the people have a right to have them removed. Period.
Think the utilities will disconnect all these people, and risk a wider conflagration and the loss of electricity revenue? I don’t think so.
Translation courtesy of a Spanish Speaking SSM! Supporter:
Wow ~ these folks are really angry! As they indeed have a legitimate reason! In the video, it states that the community of Piedra Blanca (which literally means white rock in spanish) Province Monseñor Nouel which is in the Dominican Republic are beyond livid due to this constant abuse. Hundreds of folks in diverse districts ripped out the smart meters on their property and threw them in front of their electric company EDENORTE and the masses protested in the streets. Issues with way higher bills among the constant flow of outages that are VERY prolonged is indicative of this entire system being rigged and corrupt. One man in the video (holding a smart meter) asked how was it possible that his pharmacy that was established not that long ago is going to consume 1,041 kilo?! He stated that was just part of the many abuses ~ it is rigged to benefit THEM as it did not make sense that the less electricity the residents consume the higher the bill.
It is indeed a testament that this cannot continue.
Hundreds of meters were removed and put in front of the electricity company offices of the north ( in the municipio of Vidra (sp?) Blanca, Provinica Monseñor Nahuey (sp?)
The reason was high rates combined with frequent electrical outages in the region. The outages became prolonged and the electricity bills arrived at nearly double that of the month before.
One guy (Pink T-shirt) holds up a meter and asks how it is possible in X days for it to register 1041 Kilowats. And he says, “this is why we say that they have rigged these meters to benefit them.”
The residents say that the lower their consumption, the higher the bills.
Since yesterday (whatever the date of the video is, the day prior), residents from numerous barrios had gone out in the streets to protest this.
Subject: Fw: From my cousin who is there
Here is a translation…
They and many others are very angry about the new method of charging for electricity, and the politics around how they raised their rates. ( again) There is NOTHING in the video about ‘a new method of charging for electricity’ or about ‘the politics around how they raised their rates. I have transcribed above exactly what is said in the video.
That video is the result of 2 things:
1: The electric company has changed all of the meters to digital meters, so there’s no more tampering with him, they begin that process a year ago and so throughout the city we all have digital meters which the electricity company says it’s a more accurate reading of the usage of every home. Good background info, but this is not in the video itself.
2. And also because the electric company is now a ” free entity” meaning that they are no longer under government regulation, they can essentially do whatever they want, hence charge whatever they want. Ditto.
They are also saying that the electric bills are coming in double for the same usage as last year, and that is true.The bills came this month, and the video is an example of public outrage.They’re turning over The trucks to the electric company, slashing the tires, and breaking the windows but other than that it’s just a normal calm beautiful day here.
That is why the electric to Casa and VB are even higher than ever!!!