NAACP, allies rally at NC legislature
Posted March 21
RALEIGH, N.C. — Long-time critics of Republican policies at the North Carolina General Assembly returned to the Legislative Building on Tuesday to press their agenda for expanded health care, the protection of voting and LGBT rights and a higher minimum wage.
Members of the state NAACP and many allied groups associated with the "Forward Together" movement held their annual "People's Legislative Advocacy Day," which included participant training and advocacy by knocking on doors of House and Senate members.
The advocacy effort in recent years has kicked off the "Moral Monday" protests, non-violent demonstrations that resulted in more than 1,000 arrests since 2013.
Although their were some contentious encounters with lawmakers on Tuesday, including people shouting "shame" at lawmakers as the House recessed, Rev. William Barber, state NAACP president, said the day wasn't about getting arrested.
"This was about arresting their attention," Barber said of lawmakers. "We always take this first step. We first educate. We first try to negotiate. Then, if those things don't work, we decide where we will fight, whether it will be in the courts – legally – or whether it will be through civil disobedience. We never come to get arrested, but we refuse to give up our rights."