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Flint Branch Election

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The NAACP Flint Branch will be holding an election on Saturday, December 6th. From 9am to 5pm at the UAW Region 1-C Flint Office.  Make sure to show up and exercise your right to vote.  Proper I.D. Required.

Date:

Saturday, December 6th, 2014

Time:

9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Location:

UAW Region 1-C Flint Office
1940 West Atherton Road
Flint, MI 48507

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Civil Rights Coalition Urges National Reforms and Recommendations to Address Police Abuse

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Civil Rights Coalition Urges National Reforms and Recommendations to Address Police Abuse

A coalition of national civil and human rights organizations and leaders concerned about police abuse commends last week’s announcement by Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr. launching the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) National Initiative for Building Community Trust and Justice.  The initiative will enlist a team of criminal justice researchers to study racial bias in law enforcement in five U.S. cities and will focus on training to reduce bias and ensure fairness in law enforcement. The group also applauds the federal investigation by the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division of the Ferguson, Missouri, Police Department following the August 9, 2014 fatal shooting of Michael Brown, an unarmed African American teenager, by a Darren Wilson, a white police officer. The weeks following Mr. Brown’s death have seen protests, unrest and further police-related incidents in the area, underscoring a deep schism between the police and the communities they are supposed to protect and serve.

Lawyers’ Committee President and Executive Director Barbara Arnwine and Public Policy Director Tanya Clay House, originally convened 14 national civil and human rights organizations and leaders to issue a Unified Statement of Action to Promote Reform and Stop Police Abuse on August 18, 2014.  Two of the coalition’s recommendations have come to fruition:  an independent and comprehensive investigation by the DOJ of Michael Brown’s shooting death and the use of body-worn cameras by Ferguson police officers. The group continues to call for the use of police officer body-worn cameras nationally and commends the White House’s recent announcement of testing of body-worn cameras by the U.S. Border Patrol.  Notably, five additional groups, including the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives, and more than 340 independent signatories, have joined the open letter which was sent to the White House and the DOJ.

The coalition is also encouraged by Attorney General Holder’s emphasis on the need for diversity across police departments and his description of the proactive steps that the DOJ has taken to engage the St. Louis County Police Department during his remarks regarding the civil rights investigation.  Yet while the investigation of Mr. Brown’s death, as well as the racial bias study and its associated results are significant steps forward, the groups continue to call upon the DOJ, FBI, and police departments across the country to comprehensively address the ongoing killing of unarmed African American and Latino youth and adults by police and civilians alike that may have been motivated by racial bias, and to effect universal and long-term systemic reform to end police killings and the use of excessive force.  In addition, the group continues to urge release of the federal racial profiling guidance, improved community policing, federal oversight of the distribution of federal weaponry and Congressional hearings on the use of excessive and deadly force by police.

The coalition, which remains in conversation with the White House, the DOJ, Ferguson and St. Louis County officials, and community groups and leaders, will continue to closely monitor related police-involved shootings and brutality nationwide.  Likewise, the group will remain a vital part of ongoing reforms, recommendations and actions.
Cornell William Brooks, President and CEO, NAACP:

Attorney General Eric Holder’s plan to investigate racial bias among law enforcement agencies throughout the United States, is a bold first step towards justice for thousands of victims of racial profiling throughout the country.  The  NAACP Missouri State Conference has been a leader on this front, filing five complaints with the Department of Justice, with regards to cases in St. Louis County. We applaud Attorney General Holder for his leadership in investigating the police interactions that resulted in the death of Michael Brown and that of others across the country.

Barbara R. Arnwine, President and Executive Director, Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law:

As the federal investigation of the Ferguson Police Department continues, revealing the actual practices by the police department, including patterns of racially disproportionate policing, and as the Department of Justice’s study of racial bias in law enforcement gets underway, the Lawyers’ Committee remains hopeful that the application of the rule of law will yield a just and fair result for Michael Brown and his family and former and pending police lawsuits and internal investigations nationwide.  Also, the Ferguson tragedy heightens national awareness of the criticality of voting.  It is your right and your duty to make your voice heard by exercising the fundamental right to vote to effect change in your community and in the nation.

Clayola Brown, President, A. Philip Randolph Institute:

The A. Philip Randolph Institute supports the recommended strategy of reform to ensure that the problem of police abuse is addressed at the highest level. We applaud the swift action of President Barack Obama, Attorney General Eric Holder, Jr. and the Department of Justice for taking a strong stance against violence and for speaking in favor of restructuring the current landscape to encourage diversity within law enforcement so that the true healing of our communities can move forward.

Wade Henderson, President and CEO, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights:

The Department of Justice should be commended for responding swiftly to the tragedy in Ferguson and for taking steps to address racial bias in policing, which undermines effective law enforcement and leads to the victimization of entire communities. The need for sensible reforms is urgent and we urge the administration and Congress to respond accordingly.

Pamela Meanes, President, The National Bar Association:

The National Bar Association applauds the Department of Justice Civil Rights Division’s civil pattern or practice investigation into allegations of unlawful policing by the City of Ferguson.  Such an investigation was needed and long overdue.  African American communities, such as Ferguson, have routinely been subjected to Investigatory Stops without reasonable suspicion or probable cause.  Stops resulting in unconstitutional detentions and searches. Accordingly, The National Bar Association encourages the DOJ to launch similar investigations in the 25 cities that it has sent Open Records Request. More important, the Association demands Congress to enactment of federal legislation: 1) making it mandatory for police officers to wear body monitors and any violation of this requirement would result in automatic suspension and/or termination; 2) developing and implementing an Early Warning System be to identify officers who are prone to emotional instability or behavior problems; 3) reviewing the use of Deadly Force policies; and 4) mandatory reporting of incidents by race.

Laura W. Murphy, Director, Washington Legislative Office, American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU):

We are encouraged by the Attorney General’s plan to investigate racial bias in law enforcement in select U.S. cities and hope to see such actions replicated nationally. The Department of Justice must use all of its power to implement systemic policing reforms so that the federal government is able to monitor discrimination and use of excessive and deadly force by local police agencies. These investigations are an important first step to help avoid the all too familiar deadly consequences of these unchecked systems.

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Justice for Michael Brown

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Justice for Michael Brown

The NAACP mourns the shocking loss of Michael Brown. Our hearts are with his family, and all who were touched by his death.

We need answers on his shooting – answers the Ferguson and St. Louis County Police Departments seem disinterested in providing. But our efforts will continue unabated. We will seek and ultimately find the truth about Michael Brown’s killing.

Visit this page frequently for updates from Ferguson, and to find out what you can do to demand justice for Michael.

 

What Happened

On Saturday, August 9th, Michael Brown was shot and killed by police in Ferguson, Missouri. The eighteen year old was unarmed. The community immediately rallied to demand justice and an investigation into the killing.

The NAACP has been on the ground, working with the St. Louis County branch and the Missouri State Chapter, and doing everything in our power to ensure this shooting is not swept under the rug.

It became clear very early on that the St. Louis County Police Department was dragging their feet in the case. Instead of collecting information, they confiscated cell phones and starting acting as an invading military. Instead of talking to witnesses and members of the community, they fired tear gas and rubber bullets at those seeking answers.

The NAACP petitioned the FBI to take up the case in Ferguson to ensure a full, unencumbered investigation into Michael Brown’s death would take place. We have been working with them to collect information and to provide a safe place for members of the community to come forward and be heard.

On Tuesday night, President Cornell William Brooks led a town hall in Ferguson with hundreds of members of the community. Instead of participating in the community event, the police blocked off portions of the street, forcing community members to walk to the event. More than 300 people attended and voiced their concerns and outrage over the shooting.

We will not stop until justice for Michael Brown is achieved.

Join Us in the fight for Justice!  To get involved, contact our local office at (810) 742-8622.

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Public Should be Outraged!

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As a concerned citizen, and a lifelong resident of the city of Flint, I am saddened and disappointed about the situation we find ourselves in, in 2014. To listen to the rhetoric, the noise coming from the Emergency Financial Manager, Darnell Early, and the recommendation coming from the twenty two members comprising the Blue Ribbon Committee is outlandish. First and foremost, the legitimacy of the committee is in doubt. According to The Charter Revision Handbook, Michigan Municipal League, page 5, a change in form of government requires a charter revision. More specifically, “revision of city charters may be initiated by a resolution adopted by 3/5 of the legislative body or by petition signed by at least five percent of the registered voters, unless the present charter provides otherwise.” Whichever way this is achieved, the decision to revise the charter is one that is voted on by the people.  Additionally, a nine member commission committee must also be selected to do the revisions, and none of these committee members can be an elected or appointed official. The committee must also be voted on by the people. These are just a few, but very important violations committed by this Blue Ribbon Committee, which was put in place by the EFM.

 

Where is the outrage over such terrible violations of the city charter and the rights of the people of the city of Flint? Where is the open meeting discussion from the people? To take it a step further, city council asked for a special meeting to give the people and themselves adequate time to discuss the recommendations in a public setting, their request was denied as well. It’s beginning to be more shameful and ridiculous that this kind of behavior is being forced on the people.

 

We are being told that these are recommendations that we are going to vote on. The question in ones mind is: are these legitimate recommendations by an illegitimate group? This has the perceived spirit of a return to 50 years ago; to fall under this kind of dictatorship! In order to not go back 50 years, the public should be well versed, and it should be openly discussed among Flint voters, not just 22, but 80,000 plus registered voters. The entire voice of the Flint residents should be the Blue Ribbon Committee. Are some of the recommendations good? That has yet to be determined; the process certainly was not.

 

Dr. Karen Williams Weaver, PhD

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The Flint Branch of the NAACP Steps Up Voting Efforts

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The Flint Branch NAACP members are out in big numbers to raise voter awareness in this mid-term election. While the NAACP, along with our co-sponsors gave a very successful forum last week on a very important election regarding the 34th District Michigan House of Representatives seat, we are still heavily concerned and advocating for heavy voter turn out in all of the races on August 5th!  Time is of the essence!

When we look at the last mid-term election, out of 335,069 registered voters in Genesee County only 135, 010 of the voters cast their vote! We allowed the people who were elected to further an agenda that negatively impacted the underserved. This mid-term on the ballot will be the Governor’s race, where Democratic challenger Mike Schauer is going up against Governor Rick Snyder; and the United States Senate race, where Democratic Congressman Gary Peters is taking on Republican Terry Lynn Land for the senate seat being vacated by Democratic Senator Carl Levin, who will be retiring. Who represents your interests? The power is in your hands to make that decision!

The NAACP will be teaming up with the Concerned Pastors for Social Action, and other non-partisan organizations to bring voter awareness to the electorate in Genesee County. This is an important mid-term election where we are facing high water bills, emergency manager take-overs in the State of Michigan, cutting of fire and police officers in our urban cities, threats of suing the President, possible Supreme Court Justice appointees, and immigration laws, just to name a few of the challenges. Now is the time to make your voices heard through the ballot box!

The NAACP is calling on all active bodies to take part in trying to help ensure a high voter turn out in all of these up-coming mid-term elections! Voting is a precious right that our forefathers and mothers sometimes had to die for. Don’t let their advocacy be in vain!

 

Please call the NAACP Office at (810) 742-8622 for voter empowerment information and volunteer services.

We are located at 3455 Lippincott Blvd. Flint, MI 48507

Frances L. Gilcreast, President