Statement from Jana Morgan, Director of the Declaration for American Democracy – a coalition of over 160 organizations from the labor, racial justice, faith, women’s rights, environmental, good government, and many other important communities – in solidarity with the Strike for Black Lives:
“We stand in solidarity with the many organizations and advocates striking today to confront the structural, systemic racism that has run rampant across America for far too long. The striking workers are among the many voters that have repeatedly seen their rights to the ballot box blocked or limited, which has only increased since the gutting of the Voting Rights Act seven years ago.
In order to dismantle racist policies and make sure all families are healthy, safe, and secure, elected officials must use their authority to combat voter suppression and ensure every voter can safely cast their ballot and elect their representatives. Moreover, these electeds must implement policies that ameliorate the myriad disparities in health care that Black people in America have faced during today’s pandemic. The racial injustices we have witnessed across America for centuries is not merely a human rights or health issue, it’s a political issue that must be fought at the ballot box this November.
We call on the Senate to invest in our 2020 elections to ensure everyone can safely vote during the coronavirus pandemic, no matter the color of their skin. Black Lives Matter and Black communities must have their votes counted. That includes providing safe, accessible and convenient in-person polling places, vote-by-mail, and extended early voting for everyone. No one should have to miss work or wait in line for hours to vote. Registering and requesting an absentee ballot should be easy to do online. Every state already offers mail-in voting to some citizens – now it’s time to make sure all citizens can use this safe option.
Our democracy only works if everyone, including Black and Brown people, have the ability to have their votes counted and their voices heard. It’s time to live up to our democratic ideals, and begin to dismantle our country’s racist systems by ensuring all Black voters have equal access to the ballot.”