On this National Run for Office Day, the team at In Our Own Voice shares…
Statement from In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda
WASHINGTON — Today, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act (HR 4) was reintroduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. Marcela Howell, founder and president of In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda, issued the following statement in response:
“We applaud the reintroduction of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2021. The ongoing and escalating disenfranchisement of voters threatens our democracy. Conservative lawmakers across the country are pulling out all the stops to prevent Black people — and other people of color — from exercising our right to vote.
“Forty-eight states have introduced more than 380 bills to curtail the voting rights of all Black Americans. These new Jim Crow era attacks cut at the heart of what it means to be an American citizen. Without our right to vote and to have all our votes counted, Black people have no legal means to stop the violent assaults of systemic racism and oppression on our communities. The unabashed racist attacks by Republican lawmakers bent on holding onto political power must be stopped now. It is imperative that lawmakers stop blocking Black votes and, instead, start counting our votes and listening to our demands.
“Too many of our family members have died fighting for our right to vote to let these unprincipled policymakers take that right away. We will ‘make a plan’ and we will vote no matter what the obstacles.
“Today, we call on the House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act as soon as possible. We encourage voters across the country to unite in resistance by holding their elected representatives accountable and, more importantly, by voting and organizing their family members and communities to vote in all local, state and federal elections. The future is ours.”
In Our Own Voice: National Black Women’s Reproductive Justice Agenda is a national reproductive justice organization focused on lifting the voices of Black women at the national and regional levels in our ongoing policy fight to secure reproductive justice for all women and girls. Our eight strategic partners include Black Women for Wellness, Black Women’s Health Imperative, New Voices for Reproductive Justice, SisterLove, Inc. SisterReach, SPARK Reproductive Justice NOW, The Afiya Center and Women With A Vision.