NAACP To Lead Nonviolent Civil Disobedience Today at North Carolina Legislature

Phone briefing for national media at 3:00 pm EST; RSVP for call-in number

(Durham, North Carolina) – In the face of unprecedented and far-reaching attacks on North Carolinians' ability to vote, go to school and properly care for their families, the North Carolina NAACP State Conference will hold a national media conference call at 3:00 pm to discuss a nonviolent civil disobedience “pray-in” at the North Carolina General Assembly later today. Leaders say the “pray-in” is the first of many nonviolent direct actions in the state.

“The decision to engage in civil disobedience is not one we take lightly,” stated Rev. Dr. William Barber of the North Carolina NAACP State Conference. “But right-wing extremists in the state legislature and Governor’s office are acting like the George Wallaces of the 21st century. They are pursuing a cruel, unusual and unconstitutional agenda reminiscent of the Old South. This is a state issue with national implications, since many of these same regressive forces are at play in other states. North Carolina is ground zero in a national struggle to defend democracy for all.”

In the first 50 days of the North Carolina legislative session, the Republican-controlled legislature enacted polices that will adversely impact hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians. A recent PPP poll found that North Carolinians oppose this extreme and aggressive agenda. Click here to view the poll. Sadly, the legislature appears steadfastly committed to acting outside the best interest of the people of North Carolina.  This session, the North Carolina legislature has:

  • Rejected funding to expand Medicaid to cover 500,000 North Carolinians without health insurance;
  • Rejected more than $700 million in federal funds for unemployment benefits, affecting 170,000 laid off workers;
  • Cut the payroll tax credit for over 900,000 poor and working people, while giving a tax break to 23 of the wealthiest people in our State;
  • Planned to reduce access to pre-school and kindergarten; and
  • Attacked the right to vote with a series of voter suppression laws, including a voter ID bill that will disenfranchise nearly 500,000 voters.

“This much is clear: the Republican-led legislature is standing in the way of progress and passing laws that violate fundamental constitutional rights," stated Barber. "As leaders of moral conscious, we must draw the line somewhere. This is what this direct action is all about.”

WHO: North Carolina NAACP State Conference President Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II; clergy, students, advocates and other community members

WHAT: National media conference call regarding peaceful direct action to pushback on state leaders’ broader regressive campaign against the poor, workers, minorities, seniors and students.

WHERE AND WHEN:
Phone Briefing at 3:00 – RSVP to Jennifer Farmer at jfarmer@advancementproject.org.

Pray-In begins after 5:00 pm – Exact time TBA
NC General Assembly
16 West Jones Street
Raleigh, NC 27601

For more information, please contact Ben Wrobel, NAACP, at (917) 846-0658 or Jennifer Farmer, Advancement Project, at 614.596.0432.

Founded in 1909, the NAACP is the nation's oldest and largest nonpartisan civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities. You can read more about the NAACP’s work and our five “Game Changer” issue areas here.

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