Local News

NAACP wants special legislative session on jobs

Posted February 4, 2010 3:59 p.m. EST
Updated February 4, 2010 5:10 p.m. EST

North Carolina's governor should use her constitutional powers and call for a special emergency session of the General Assembly to address jobs and how federal stimulus funds are being used.

That's the message from state NAACP President Rev. William Barber, who on Thursday sent a letter to Gov. Beverly Perdue about the "obscene unemployment rates of people of color, of young people and of people in certain poor areas of our state."

Barber said that, of the 11.2 percent of North Carolinians who are unemployed as of December, 20 to 30 percent are minorities and youth.

"Twenty-two percent of African-Americans in North Carolina are unemployed and need jobs today, not next month or next year," he said.

He also wants the governor's help in calling a jobs summit for lawmakers and the NAACP to talk about new ways to create more jobs.

"I’ve heard the request. I’ve not seen what they are asking, but everybody in the state knows that jobs are just an absolute priority for me and for the secretary of Commerce," Perdue said Thursday afternoon in response to the request. "I am doing everything I can do to use the federal recovery money to create jobs across the state."

"I will look with interest at what they are proposing, but in terms of the special session, I would doubt very seriously, with it already being February, that we would bring the General Assembly back for anything, because they come back in May," she continued.