Press Release

NAACP Joins in Call by Civil Rights Groups Urging Attorney General Sessions to Include Civil Rights in DOJ’s Priorities

March 13, 2018

BALTIMORE—(March 12, 2018) The NAACP, the nation’s foremost civil rights organization, along with other prominent African-American civil rights organizations, has sent a joint letter strongly advising U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to maintain the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) commitment to the civil rights laws – a commitment which Congress has entrusted it to enforce. The letter is in response to last week’s leaked draft of Session’s strategic plan. The plan noticeably lacked a dedicated effort to enforcing principal civil rights statutes.  The joint letter reiterates to the Department of Justice, its legal and moral responsibility to protect fundamental civil rights for all across the United States.

“Protecting and enforcing civil rights for everyone in this nation should be of the utmost priority to the Department of Justice and Attorney General Jeff Sessions,” said Derrick Johnson, President and CEO of the NAACP. “It’s important that we do not allow those institutions responsible for protecting the infrastructure of civil rights abdicate their duty or purposely engage in a silent war against our freedoms by supporting policies which allow for a slow disintegration of the hard-earned freedoms, so many sacrificed their lives for.”

The letter was co-authored by Derrick Johnson, President and CEO of the NAACP; Sherrilyn Ifill, President and Director-Counsel of LDF; Kristen Clarke, President and Executive Director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law; Marc Morial, President and CEO of the National Urban League; Reverend Al Sharpton, President and Founder of the National Action Network; and Melanie L. Campbell, President and CEO of the National Coalition for Black Civic Participation and Black Women’s Roundtable.

For a copy of the letter contact: Malik Russell /