North Carolina’s People’s Platform for Social and Economic Survival and Beyond Us

We are in the midst of a global pandemic, witnessing the devastating consequences of COVID-19 on countries and communities across the world. This health crisis is exposing, in no uncertain terms, the social, economic, and political crisis that our communities have been bearing for decades and more. Our response to this moment, and the grave injustices that are now amplifying its consequences, offers us the opportunity to move toward a North Carolina where all people can thrive. At this point, it is impossible to extract the crisis caused by COVID-19 from the massive social and economic inequality that laid the groundwork for the disproportionate spread of devastation we can anticipate in our state. Our way forward, therefore, must prioritize solutions that rectify both. 

We’ve weathered many storms in North Carolina, and know all too well which communities are most likely to be left out of preparation and recovery efforts in times of crisis. The same communities that will be hit the hardest by this crisis are the same communities still recovering from Hurricane Michael, Hurricane Florence and Hurricane Dorian. Like many of the natural disasters that have affected North Carolina in recent years, COVID-19 will inevitably hit vulnerable communities the hardest — working and poor people, Black people, people of color, LGBTQ people, disabled people, elderly people, youth and students, parents, migrants and refugees, incarcerated people, the homeless, and women. To set our course toward a future that truly leaves no one behind, these are the people we must prioritize now.

As such, as a broad coalition of directly impacted people, constituencies, and organizations committed to weathering this storm together, we demand:

  • Healthcare is a human right and no person should be denied care and treatment;
  • Housing is a human right and no person should be homeless, live in fear of eviction or displacement; 
  • Access to food is a human right and no person should go hungry;
  • All of our families matter; parents and caregivers must be supported regardless of family size, citizenship status, gender, ability, and sexual orientation; 
  • From domestic, city, and healthcare workers to retail and service workers, contractors, and educators: All workers deserve livable wages, benefits, safety, dignity and protection;
  • ICE does not keep our communities safe or resolve a broken immigration system; migrants and refugees have the right to live free from fear; 
  • Prisons and detention centers are not the answer to the challenges facing our society and pose a significant health risk to both incarcerated individuals and workers during this pandemic;
  • Democracy must work not just for corporations and the elite few who can pay to have their profit-driven agendas prioritized, but for all of us.

North Carolina has available dollars — approximately $1.7 billion in the Rainy Day fund and $2.2 billion in unappropriated funds. An even greater amount of federal funds – over $4 billion – is coming to North Carolina as result of the CARES Act. This is the time to use this money for vital services, pass a comprehensive budget, and enact a more equitable and fair revenue structure. The time is now to use this money to mitigate the harm facing North Carolinians during this pandemic. We urge our Governor and the North Carolina General Assembly to act as soon as possible on the following demands in accordance with the values we have named above:

1a) Expand Medicaid: Expand Medicaid without impediments to access such as work requirements. During a public health crisis, it is more important than ever that every North Carolinian has access to care, and while the ultimate goal is healthcare for everyone, expanding Medicaid is an essential and urgent first step.

1b) Protect Our Hospitals and Healthcare System: The State should act immediately to ensure that everyone has access to free and widespread testing, treatment, and medication, prioritizing testing, treatment, and medication for frontline care professionals who work in home and community settings (healthcare professionals, home health aides, cleaning and custodial staff, etc.), without their information being shared with local or federal law enforcement, including ICE, in addition to health insurance and access to mental health care regardless of their pre-existing conditions, immigration status, employment status, or sexuality. 

It is imperative that the state increase harm reduction services for people with substance use disorder, provide emergency funding for in-patient residential treatment facilities and evidenced based treatment centers that use Medication Assisted Treatment including MAT for people that are in jail and incarcerated, increase access to telehealth treatment and recovery services for mental health and substance use disorders, increase funding for comprehensive and crisis services for mental health or substance use emergencies, including services tailored for young people and pregnant individuals. Furthermore, abortion is essential health care, and access to reproductive healthcare (including access to birth control and emergency contraception) is essential. North Carolina should also look at emergency appropriations to support our weakened public health infrastructure, particularly investing in rural hospitals. 

2) Respect the dignity and support the well-being of immigrants, regardless of immigration status: 

  • Ensure that all immigrants have full access to all local and state emergency services: Any legislation should ensure that state employees and other service providers do not ask for immigration status when people apply for or access these services. 
  • Provide emergency cash assistance: Create a relief fund for people who are not eligible for unemployment insurance and federal cash payments. Ensure that the process is accessible for community members who do not have access to government-issued identification.
  • Ensure access to healthcare: Make testing and treatment free and accessible to everyone, regardless of immigration status. Ensure that any expansion of public health insurance programs are provided to all North Carolinians regardless of immigration status.
  • Ensure language access:  Make critical information, resources, and forms related to COVID-19 and relief programs available in a timely manner in the languages spoken in North Carolina, including Arabic, Farsi, French, Spanish, Swahili, Mandarin, Hindi, Urdu, Vietnamese, Korean, and Tagalog. Hotlines should be staffed with bilingual personnel and/or interpretation services and sufficient resources should be allocated for quality interpretation and translation. 
  • End collaboration with ICE: During the COVID-19 crisis, immigrants have been taken into custody with the active participation of DPS employees. North Carolina’s leaders must ensure that no state agencies collaborate with ICE and that the Department of Public Safety ceases to notify ICE of upcoming probation appointments. 
  • Uphold the Governor’s veto of HB 370: Legislators must uphold the Governor’s veto of HB 370 which forces sheriffs to honor ICE detainers (requests by ICE for local law enforcement to hold someone in criminal custody for longer to give ICE officers time to pick them up and transfer them to immigration detention) would only further exacerbate this crisis. Any collaboration with ICE and local law enforcement undermines public safety.
  • Prevent racial profiling and harassment by law enforcement: Many immigrants and essential workers report having been stopped or harassed by police officers. The Governor must issue specific guidance to state, county and municipal law enforcement agencies to prevent immigrants from being targeted for unjustified stops and ensure that all traffic stops are properly documented per § 143B-903.

Legislators must take on the following advocacy outside of legislation:

  • ICE arrests: Call on ICE to suspend ICE arrests in North Carolina. Suspending ICE arrests would go a long way in ensuring undocumented community members and others at risk of detention and deportation seek out the health care they need. Suspending ICE arrests also prevents unnecessary exposure and spread of COVID-19 in immigration detention centers. North Carolina should do everything it can to prevent residents from being placed in conditions where social distancing is not practicable and defend them when they are. Such measures could also help prevent a COVID-19 outbreak amongst those already detained.
  • Call on ICE to release North Carolina’s detained community members: Community members in immigration custody and employees who work inside those facilities are extremely vulnerable to contagious illnesses like COVID-19 due to the enclosed nature of detention facilities. Reports of medical neglect at ICE detention centers have also resulted in preventable deaths of community members in ICE custody, including at least one North Carolinian who had been sent to the Stewart Detention Facility in Lumpkin, Georgia after being detained by in Wake County. Instead of jailing people in dangerous conditions, ICE should release detained community members. Once the pandemic subsides, released community members can pursue their immigration cases from their homes with community support, where they are much more likely to be able to access legal representation. Data shows that 99 percent of those released from detention who had a lawyer showed up for all their immigration court hearings.

3) Protect People Within and From the Carceral System: We operate from the very real premise that our current system of mass incarceration, including law enforcement, prisons, jails, juvenile detention centers, and ice detention centers are not the answer to the challenges facing our society and pose a significant health risk to both incarcerated individuals and workers during this pandemic. 

We know that those institutions operate with racist underpinnings, and counter to the interests of working people, creating a pipeline to jail, prison or even deportation, particularly for people of color residing in the state. Under the current shelter in place guidelines, the risk of racial profiling and arrest for communities of color  is exacerbated, not eliminated. Now is the time to take action and stand up for the most vulnerable communities in our state. 

  • Decriminalize Houselessness. People have a right to exist and to not be criminalized for violating a stay at home order. Folks simply need a home to stay at home. There should be mechanisms in place to protect people and support their placement in safe housing. As well as tangible methods that allow for people to report any law-enforced abuse. 
  • Reduce Arrests. Law enforcement should not exacerbate the problem by funneling more people into youth detention centers and jails. Law enforcement should exercise discretion to limit ticketing for traffic violations, arrests of individuals.
  • End Cash Bail and Pretrial Confinement. Approximately 80% of the people sitting in jail at this time are awaiting trial. So the majority of folks are on the inside because they couldn’t afford to pay for their freedom. 
  • Protect Youth in the Juvenile System. Youth detention centers should protect the rights, mental health and wellbeing of youth, ensuring access to high quality healthcare and hygiene products and ongoing communication with family members. Facilities should also provide  transition plans for youth that ensure basic needs are met.
  • Protect Incarcerated People.  State and county facilities must provide a standard of care that ensures access to free, high-quality, comprehensive healthcare services for incarcerated people, including testing for COVID-19.  During this time when visitations have been halted, state and county facilities should make all phone calls, video calls, and other communication free and more accessible. 
  • Refuse to honor ICE Detainers. Law enforcement should end agreements with ICE Enforcement agents, including arrest and detention of individuals on ICE detainers. Every person sitting in an ICE detention center at this time is there because an arbitrary line decided they aren’t deserving of the American Dream.
  • Free Them All. North Carolina should use compassionate release to free North Carolinians incarcerated in prisons, jails and youth detention centers. Due to the deadly nature of a pandemic, now is not a time to make exceptions  it’s very much a matter of life and death. We recognize that certain populations, such as the elderly, pregnant, and immune-compromised are particularly vulnerable but in a matter of life and death, we simply cannot afford to treat anyone as expendable. The least we can do is push for everyone to be released. People deserve to live full lives free from fear. They deserve their freedom now.  

4) Keep people housed and all rent/utility payments waived:  Use the emergency power of the Governor’s office and state legislature to enforce an immediate waiver of all rent and utility payments for all tenants for the duration of the COVID-19 crisis. The Governor must exercise his emergency powers under N.C. General Statute Section 169A-19.30(b) to eliminate any charge for essential services, which specifically includes “shelter” and “rent.” This waiver must apply to all tenants in both the public and private sector. Waiver of rent and utility payments must mean complete forgiveness, meaning tenants are not mandated to make any retroactive payments at the end of any suspension or forbearance. Unhoused people are particularly vulnerable and the Governor’s office must also act to increase more housing for unhoused people and increase funding to assistance programs for unhoused people. Furthermore, we want the state legislature to stop any evictions of unhoused encampments that put people at risk. 

Use the emergency powers of the Governor’s office and state legislature to suspend home evictions and foreclosures statewide until at least December 31, 2020. Courts must cease accepting filings for new eviction cases and all sheriffs must cease serving new eviction cases and cease enforcing any previously issued orders of possession. All pending eviction cases should be dismissed. Where applicable, utilities must be reinstated where they’ve already been shut off for non-payment. Demanding rent or utility payments for this period, whether the demands are made now or in the future, must be entirely prohibited. 

Ensure housing and services for people experiencing domestic violence. Direct funding toward temporary housing for survivors of domestic violence. Ensure that all survivors are part of the groups eligible for shelter under recent executive orders directing FEMA funding toward temporary housing.

5) Freedom from Hunger: Even before workers’ hours were cut back or eliminated by the current crisis, hunger was an enormous problem for poor and working people in North Carolina.  Nearly 60% of all students in NC public schools qualified for free school lunches and depended on them to meet their nutritional needs.  Durham Public Schools has mobilized to continue to provide food to these students which is critical as huge numbers of households suddenly lose their income. 

  • County Commissioners and Emergency Management Agents must ensure that all schools aid in the efforts to provide free meals: It is their responsibility to ensure that nobody goes hungry therefore these officials must see that ending hunger is a vital part of their job.  
  • State and local governments should distribute funding to local businesses such that they can provide free meals in their communities: It is unacceptable for anyone to go hungry, especially in the wealthiest country in the world.  This increase in funding will make use of harvested food, put restaurant workers back to work and feed hungry families.  
  • Food delivery must be available to families in isolation: It is unacceptable to force families in isolation to risk their health to come to public locations for meals.  Funding should be provided such that restaurants can provide local delivery service.

6) Ensure Paid Sick Days and Family Medical Leave For All. Fix our Broken Unemployment System and Enact a Universal Basic Income: Workers need immediate and permanent job-protected 14 days paid sick leave and three months of family medical leave for all workers, including part-time, seasonal workers, and independent contractors, regardless of the size of their employer or type of job and regardless of immigration status, or longer if required to weather this crisis. Providing paid sick leave and paid family medical leave will give workers the ability to take time off for all COVID-19 related needs for themselves and their loved ones. 

We demand the state legislature take the following steps to make paid sick and family leave as outlined in Families First Coronavirus Response Act permanent, and extend to general sick leave post crisis: 

  • Provide two calendar weeks of emergency paid sick days, including part-time and seasonal and ensure they are enforceable for every worker, regardless of their immigration status, the size of their employer, or their type of job
  • Give workers the ability to take paid sick days without a diagnosis for all COVID-related needs for themselves and their loved ones, including all of the provisions included in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act 
  • Provide full pay to care for family members, not two-thirds of their wages

Emergency Paid Family and Medical Leave:

    • Provide three months of emergency paid family and medical leave at ⅔ employee’s regular rate of pay, and make sure it is enforceable for every worker, including part-time, seasonal, and independent contractors regardless of immigration status, the size of their employer, or type of job. 
    • Ensure emergency leave includes the coverage of all family members in the original House Democratic package. 

For Both Paid Sick Days and Paid Family Leave:

  • Extend both provisions for one full year after the date of enactment.

Our state’s unemployment insurance system is among the very worst in the nation in terms of access rates and benefit levels. Allow unemployment insurance eligibility for quarantine, lost hours, or cancelled work, streamline the process for applying, and remove any requirements to seek work in order to access unemployment benefits. Lift the $350 cap and extend the eligibility timeline to the federal maximum of 26 weeks or longer if required to weather this crisis. We demand the state legislature take the following steps to fix our unemployment insurance system:

  • Extend benefits to all workers, including part-time, seasonal, independent contractors
  • Restoring the duration to 26 weeks or longer depending on length of crisis;
  • Basing benefits on the highest quarter of earnings;
  • Eliminating waiting weeks;
  • Increasing the minimum benefit to at least $600/ week, the equivalent of a living wage of $15/hr
  • Restoring good-cause separations to pre-2013 definitions, including concerns directly or indirectly related to COVID-19; and
  •  Providing a permanent Universal Basic Income of $1200/month to all North Carolinians regardless of employment, income, age, disability, immigration status or any other factor. 

7) Put the Health and Welfare of Working People and Communities Ahead of Corporate Profits:

Hazard Pay for Essential Workers Now

We call on the NC General Assembly to secure hazard pay for all workers deemed essential and including gig and contract workers at a rate of double time or $15/hour whichever is greater. No worker should be paid less than $15 during this pandemic, regardless of their previous hourly rate. It is unacceptable that essential workers are asked to take on heightened risk of COVID-19 exposure while paid poverty wages. $15/hr is the minimum any worker should be paid in a pandemic or afterwards. We call on the NC General Assembly to pass a $15/hr minimum wage for all workers– including tipped workers, domestic workers, farmworkers and workers with disabilities– effective immediately and lasting beyond the COVID-19 pandemic response. 

Worker’s Safety Standards: Employers Must Provide PPE, Safe Housing, and Abide By Social Distancing Requirements.

We call on the NC General Assembly to pass an Emergency OSHA Standard for COVID-19. This standard should require all employers to provide workers with adequate safety protections on the job and personal protective equipment (PPE), including a regular supply of free n95 masks, soap and hand sanitizing equipment, and gloves. Employers should be required to slow production in order to abide by social distancing requirements and should ensure that social distancing policies are clear with proper signage. The NC Department of Labor should set up and administer a hotline with appropriate language assistance for workers to report unsafe working conditions without fear of retaliation by their employers. No worker should be expected to call law enforcement on their employer. The NCGA should fund additional inspectors for DOL to guarantee follow-up on these reports and additional inspections as necessary to guarantee worker safety. Additionally, workers need access to free childcare and affordable and safe transportation. 

Farmworkers face dangerous, cramped living conditions as well as dangerous working conditions. In solidarity with the Farmworker Advocacy Network, we call on the NC General Assembly to 1) ensure migrant agricultural workers are not put at risk in their employer-provided housing and 2) ensure agricultural workers are able to protect themselves from COVID-19 exposure while working. Employer-provided housing must meet COVID-19 safety standards. We call on the NC General Assembly to require the NC Department of Labor’s Agricultural Safety and Health Bureau to 1) not certify additional migrant housing unless the housing provider demonstrates that it has an emergency plan in place as outlined in the March 26th DHHS guidance; 2) not certify housing where the beds are closer than six feet away from each other; 3) not certify any housing that only has outhouses; and 4) revoke the certification of any housing that has already been certified unless they also have an emergency plan in place, at least six feet between beds and do not rely on outhouses. Additionally, employer-provided housing must have an adequate supply of disinfectant wipes, soap, toilet paper, and other cleaning supplies. In the field, all workers should be provided with hand sanitizer, adequate handwashing facilities, potable water and enough disposable drinking cups so that they do not have to share. Farmworkers and poultry and livestock processing workers must be allowed breaks to sanitize their hands to protect themselves and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Breaks are not currently required by law. As stated above, the NCGA should fund additional inspectors for DOL to guarantee worker safety and ensure that employers are providing information in workers’ dominant languages.

No Retaliation

NCGA must make it unlawful for an employer to discharge or penalize an employee for complying with a quarantine, isolation, or stay-at-home order (statewide or local), for leaving work because of COVID19 exposure concerns, or for taking other necessary precautions to protect themselves or their families against the spread of the virus. No employer should be allowed to discriminate or retaliate in any way against any employee communicating (orally or in writing) with management about occupational safety or health matters related to COVID-19, including asking questions or expressing concerns. Similarly, employees deemed essential should be allowed to wear personal protective equipment they reasonably believe will protect them, their coworkers or the public against COVID-19 in the course of their work without fear of discrimination or retaliation. Farmworkers are particularly vulnerable because of isolation, language barriers, lack of transportation, and lack of connection to services in the community. Ensuring that they do not suffer unlawful retaliation will require access to legal services.

Workers may refuse to perform hazardous work with no loss of pay or retaliation if the situation presents an imminent danger, the worker reasonably believes the situation is an imminent danger, and the worker has brought the issue to the attention of the employer who has failed to respond and address the hazard. These situations should be immediately reported to the NC Department of Labor who should have the authority to receive complaints about violations of this order and enforce these provisions using necessary procedures to ensure compliance, including cease and desist orders, awards of backpay, and civil penalties. These rights and protections shall be extended to all, regardless of immigration status and in addition to any other rights or protections established by any other law, regulation, executive order, contract, agreement, or collective bargaining agreement.

Union Rights for All

We call on the NC General Assembly to make it easier for workers to form unions and participate in industry-wide bargaining. Unions are how workers advocate for and protect themselves; COVID-19 has shown we need union rights for all more than ever before. We call on the NC General Assembly to roll back “Right to Work” and “At Will” laws that make it difficult for all workers to form unions, including the prohibition on collective bargaining agreements for public sector employees. The NLRB should continue to hold union elections at this time with mail-in ballots.

8) Tax Fairness for North Carolinians: The current public health crisis has highlighted the ways in which our tax code exacerbates inequities by prioritizing tax cuts for the few over our collective well-being.

North Carolina’s tax code is upside down. Currently, big corporations pay lower tax rates than minimum wage workers. As a result of 2013 tax cuts, the state currently loses out on collecting an additional $3.6 billion in revenue each year. These tax cuts have benefited wealthy people and big corporations at the expense of everyone else. Restructuring our state tax code to raise revenue from those most able to pay will help respond to COVID-19 by meeting the growing need for public services and paving the way for long-term shared prosperity. 

The North Carolina General Assembly should act urgently to prioritize fairness within the state tax code by considering the following recommendations: 

  • Corporate income tax increase: Since 2013, North Carolina dropped its corporate income tax rate from 6.9 percent to the current 2.5 percent. Increasing the corporate tax rate to at least 5 percent (still below where it was before) would generate an additional $250 million – revenue that would help provide vital services.  
  • Graduated personal income tax: Since North Carolina eliminated its graduated income tax, the flat tax structure puts a greater burden on low income people than millionaires. Not only is this unfair, it is an unreliable and unsustainable way to raise revenue.  We need a graduated income tax that asks those who make the most to pay the most. Removing arbitrary caps on the income tax rate from our state Constitution is a good place to start.
  • Sales tax modernization: North Carolina’s sales tax system is outdated and inequitable. While North Carolina has done much to tax online transactions there is still more that can be done to modernize sales tax administration. Broadening the base –to eliminate breaks on luxury goods like yachts and airplane fuel– while lowering the rate would make sales taxes fairer for everyone. 
  • Wealth tax: Now more than ever, we must ask wealthy people to contribute their fair share to public services. Those most insulated from the economic harms of this pandemic should be responsible for resourcing the recovery. Options for taxing wealth include estate and inheritance taxes, capital gains taxes, and mansion taxes. 

To address the public health and economic crisis, the NC General Assembly should get serious about fixing our tax code so we have the resources in this moment and in the long-term. 

Ultimately,  fiscal analysis should be done to determine which options result in the largest revenue gains for the state while reversing the regressive, racist design of our current tax code. We must ask those most able to pay for the public health response and economic recovery to contribute their fair share. Now is the time to adopt a more equitable tax structure that meets demands for public services and puts the state on firmer footing going forward. 

9) Protect our Democracy and Extend the Census: Legislators must ensure that all North Carolinians can fully and safely participate in the upcoming congressional primary and the 2020 general election during this public health crisis.

The legislature should implement the following: 

  • Allow non-DMV customers to register to vote online; 
  • Ensure that eligible individuals in jails, prisons, and nursing homes have access to voting;
  • Expand early voting and eliminate uniform hours requirements; 
  • Expand efforts to recruit more poll workers; 
  • Provide poll workers with hazard pay; and 
  • Provide poll workers with personal protective equipment.

The legislature must also prepare resources for large-scale mail-in absentee voting, including: 

  • Establish a multi-lingual hotline to assist voters with mail-in absentee voting;
  • Eliminate witness and notary requirements for mail-in absentee voting;
  • Provide pre-paid mail-in absentee ballot request forms to all registered voters;
  • Provide pre-paid postage on return mail-in absentee ballots;
  • Provide secure ballot drop off locations for each county; 
  • Implement mail-in absentee ballot tracking; and 
  • Provide resources and funding for a robust voter education effort. 

Legislators must provide additional funding resources for state and county election officials tasked with running our elections. 

Additionally, our state government must support accommodations to ensure full participation in the Census, and officials should advance long-term efforts to increase voter access and participation, including rights restoration and automatic voter registration.

10) Access to Government: 

Declare access to the internet as an essential public utility by providing additional funding for the expansion of broadband access to ensure all residents, including those in urban and rural communities, have full access to online resources.

  • While North Carolina is ranked 18th nationally with 89% of North Carolinians having broadband access, there are counties all across the state, both urban and rural, where up to 31% of residents do not have wired or wireless broadband access.  As a result of systemic racism, this disparity is only increased when looking specifically at communities of color.  Although it may be the responsibility of individuals to ultimately pay for their broadband access, too many communities around the state do not even have the infrastructure established to give their residents this opportunity.

All government entities need to accept remote signatures and attestations and remote appearances — for court cases, hearings and social service agency government contracts.

  • Although the court system has been declared closed for the immediate future, some procedural meetings are still happening.  In order to ensure that people are properly distancing themselves during these times, as well as increasing equitable access in the future, it is imperative that government entities accept virtual appearances and electronic signatures.

It should be common practice that defendants can pay ALL court costs online, criminal or civil.

  • We know that the court system routinely moves slowly and does not work in the best interests of poor, marginalized people.  It is unfair to demand that criminal justice involved people go out of their way to go to the courthouse in order to pay fines and fees.  We are in a society that accepts online payments for almost every bill or service, except court services, and that is unfair to the most oppressed communities of our society.

The North Carolina General Assembly must ensure that all NC counties make all local rules and court forms available online to plaintiffs, defendants and legal counsel.

  • While a number of forms are available online for all parties involved in the criminal justice system, none of these forms are available for online submission.  Now, more than ever, we should be working to ensure that all paperwork necessary to ensure a speedy, yet fair process can be submitted without barriers.

It should be the duty all court appointed counsel to make initial contact with their court appointed clients.

  • For people incarcerated at the time of appointment, public defenders are responsible for making contact with their clients.  

Elected officials should also make themselves available to the public through digital platforms including Facebook live and tele-town halls.

  • We are living in an age where the vast majority of our elected officials have some form of social media accounts, as do a large number of government entities.  It should be a requirement for these officials and entities to record as well as live stream all public meetings.  These meetings should be announced to the public ahead of time such that the public can participate by sending in questions ahead of time or in real time via chat boxes, Q&As, polls and surveys etc
  • Additionally, public meetings must include an option for telephonic participation for those without access to the internet or without access to reliable internet.

Elected officials must ensure all information provided through public television announcements, websites, print and other forms of communication is done so in the most accessible way possible, including live captioning and ASL interpretation.

  • Approximately 8% of the North Carolina population is made up entirely of immigrants.  These individuals work, pay taxes, attend schools and most importantly, they vote.  Our elected officials have a duty to ensure that all communications are accessible regardless of language barriers.  Whether it be online resources, printed or translation for live streams, language should not be a barrier to access in our state. In addition, there should be translation services provided for all public meetings.

    Download this statement as a PDF – click here.

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    » Open Door School
    » Orange County Rape crisis center
    » Our Sacred Circles
    » Piedmont Democratic Socialists of America
    » Pisgah Legal Services
    » Planned Parenthood South Atlantic
    » Poder NC Action
    » Power Up NC
    » Progress North Carolina
    » Progressive Democrats of Orange County
    » ProgressNow
    » Project 70 Forward

    » Racial Justice Coalition
    » Racial Justice Coalition, Asheville
    » Raising Wages NC
    » Raleigh Democratic Socialists of America
    » Raleigh PACT
    »Raleigh Sunrise Hub
    » Sacrificial Poets
    » Ready the Ground Training Team
    » Rent Strike Raleigh
    » Resource Generation
    » Rocky Mount Racial Justice Group
    » Safe Coalition NC
    » Sanctuary Beyond Walls
    » Sankofatree
    » Sawubona
    » Scalawag
    »School of Love
    » Serena Sebring, community organizer
    » SHAC Gender Affirming Care Clinic
    » SHIFT NC
    » Showing Up For Racial Justice - Triangle Chapter
    » Siembra NC
    »Sierra Club - North Carolina
    » Silk Hope Catholic Worker
    » Silver Muse Productions
    » SisterSong
    » SOAR Outreach
    » Southern Vision Alliance
    » Southerners on New Ground
    » State Innovation Exchange (SiX) Action
    » Steel String Brewery
    » Student Action with Farmworkers 
    » Student Health Action Coalition Gender Affirming Care Clinic
    » Student Health Action Coalition Gender Affirming Care Clinic
    » Sunrise Chapelboro
    » Sunrise Community for Recovery & Wellness in Asheville
    » Sunrise Durham Strike Circle
    » Sunrise Movement Asheville
    »Sunrise Movement Charlotte
    » Sunrise Movement North Carolina
    » Tepeyac Consulting
    » The Dogwood Alliance
    » The Green Light Project
    » The Greene List
    » The Hispanic Bridge
    » This Will Help
    » Transform Network
    » Tranzmission
    » Triangle People Power
    » Tuesdays with Tillis Indivisible
    » Umoja Health and Wellness Justice Collective
    » UNC Law National Lawyers Guild
    »UNC Student Environmental Action Coalition
    » Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry of NC
    » United for a Fair Economy
    » United for Respect
    » Unity in Community North Mecklenburg, Inc.
    » Vegan Flava Cafe
    »Wayne County Strong
    » We Dream in Black - NDWA
    » Wealth Reclamation Academy of Practitioners
    » Western NC Citizens Ending Institutional Bigotry
    » Winston Salem DSA
    » Witness for Peace Southeast
    » Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Triangle
    » Workers United of WNC
    » Working America
    » Working Films
    » Yesod Farm+Kitchen
    » YWCA of Asheville

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