Image from Planned Parenthood South Atlantic NC
House Bill 40 is designed to silence the voice of the people. And it’s not the first time we’ve seen something like it.
North Carolina Republicans first introduced anti-protest legislation in 2021 following the previous year’s historic national uprisings against police violence. Its purpose was clear: to intimidate Black Lives Matter protesters from taking to the streets to exercise their First Amendment rights and call for justice.
HB 40, under the guise of targeting “rioters,” has the same goal in 2023. Its vagueness grants broad discretion to cops to punish protesters. The penalties it imposes would disproportionately impact Black, brown, and low-income people. And now the legislation has been sent by the General Assembly to Governor Cooper to sign or veto.
Emancipate NC has vocally opposed this racist, classist intimidation tactic. We joined with dozens of other organizations in calling on Gov. Cooper to veto the bill, just like he did in 2021.