White Plains, NY, January 24, 2022 … The White Plains/Greenburgh NAACP Branch today announced that despite its profound disappointment with the defeat of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and Freedom to Vote Act the by the U. S. Senate on Wednesday, Jan. 19th, it remains determined to carry the battle forward with every available resource from its Branch and the communities within its Branch territory.
The first bill is named for former congressman and Selma March victim John Lewis. It is intended to return key elements of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 which were abruptly dropped by the Supreme Court in 2013. That decision eliminated the powerful section requiring communities with a racial discrimination track record to satisfy the Justice Department that discrimination was ruled out before permitting any voting rules modifications.
The second Act would increase absentee and early voting opportunities as well as adopting a new national requirement for automatic voter registration. Incarcerated individuals would have their right to vote restored once they have served their sentence, and also facilitate compliance with state voter ID laws. Lastly, a national holiday would be established for Election Day designed to eliminate the obstacles encountered when casting a vote on a work day.
“Martin Luther King, Jr., reminded us that ‘the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.’ Our Branch has long understood that a dependable democracy is critical to the NAACP’s work in dismantling discrimination. Our democratic privileges begin and end with the act of voting” Janice Griffith, Branch President, says. “This initial setback from the Senate will only fuel our advocacy for voting rights reform and keep us moving forward on Dr. King’s long arc. No one should be surprised when the unity and power of the NAACP and its supporters helps to bring voting rights across a winner’s finish line, although it may resemble a marathon more than a sprint.”
“Our Branch is very appreciative of the efforts from those elected officials who stood up for voting rights, and likewise remain committed to delivering the results the majority of voting Americans expect,” added Ms. Griffith.
Founded in 1909 in response to the ongoing violence against Black people around the country, the NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) is the largest and most pre-eminent civil rights organization in the nation. We have over 2,200 units and branches across the nation, along with well over 2M activists. Our mission is to secure the political, educational, social, and economic equality of rights in order to eliminate race-based discrimination and ensure the health and well-being of all persons.