Following a flurry of recent court rulings reasserting the spirit of the Voting Rights Act and condemning voter repression efforts, the Fourth Circuit invalidated North Carolina’s election law that created onerous restrictions on voter access. The Court powerfully stated that “politics as usual” as a justification for many of the changes the law introduced cannot be accepted where “politics as usual” translates into race-based discrimination.
Even though this decision deals with an intentionally discriminatory law in a Deep South state, it is critical for us to remain vigilant about addressing more subtle forms of racism and discrimination as we tackle voter access issues in Chicago and Illinois. In addition, the grassroots organizing in North Carolina is a powerful example of the critical role that community members play in identifying discriminatory patterns out of their lived experiences, and working in coalition with legal advocates to mount a successful legal challenge.
Voting rights is a cornerstone of the Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights’ commitment to advance civil rights and racial equity through the power and the promise of the law. We work in partnership with communities most directly impacted by racism and discrimination, as well as member law firms and other advocacy organizations to achieve our social justice goals. Join us as we prepare to protect and expand the vote in the November elections.
-Bonnie Allen, Executive Director
For information about how you can get involved to support these efforts, please contact Timna Axel, Communications Associate, at firstname.lastname@example.org.