Reverend Al Sharpton and National Action Network (NAN) planned several events last weekend to commemorate the two-year anniversary of Eric Garner who was killed while in police custody. Sharpton appeared last Sunday at The New Hope Memorial Baptist Church in Elizabeth, New Jersey with the mother of Garner—Gwen Carr—as well as the mothers of Ramarley Graham, Amadou Diallo, Sean Bell, Oscar Grant, Tamir Rice. Reverend Steffie Bartley, a national board member and president of the Elizabeth chapter of NAN is the pastor.
Later in the day, the mothers journeyed to the cemetery to lay a wreath on at Garner’s tombstone. The day before, NAN led a march through downtown Brooklyn.
Sharpton delivered remarks last week at Alton Sterling’s funeral in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The 37-year-old Sterling was shot to death by two white cops who pinned him to the ground outside of a convenience store. “We’re not fighting for revenge, we’re fighting for justice,” Sharpton said. “This is not a battle against the police, it’s a battle against wrong.”
NAN has consistently called on federal prosecutors to launch a civil rights probe into the death of Garner.
SHARPTON KEYNOTES NAACP CONVENTION
Reverend Al Sharpton delivered a rousing keynote speech at the NAACP Convention held in Cincinnati last Wednesday.
“God has brought us this far,” Sharpton told the delegates who gathered at the Duke Energy Convention Center. “He won’t leave us now. Go ahead, NAACP, don’t you back up. God is on our side.”
The convention included Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, Ohio Gov. John Kasich and U.S. Labor Secretary Tom Perez. Sharpton said that he and National Action Network will make sure that the right to vote is protected in the upcoming presidential race.
“No one donated us the right to vote,” he said. “We marched. We suffered. The NAACP went to court. Some went to jail. Some people went to their graves. We’re not going to let you take that right back.”
NAN HEADED TO CITY OF BROTHERLY LOVE FOR DNC
When thousands of Democrats gather in Philadelphia next week to formally nominate Hillary Clinton as the Democratic nominee for President of the United States of America, National Action Network and its members will be active in helping to shape the party’s agenda.
Alicia Reece, a NAN national board member who is also a state representative in the Ohio legislature, is a member of the DNC platform drafting committee.
NAN will also host a lunch for members of the clergy, elected officials and philanthropists at the Hilton Penn’s Landing Hotel on Thursday, July 28, 2016.
HISTORY IS MADE WITH A NEW LIBRARIAN OF CONGRESS
History was made when the U.S. Senate confirmed Dr. Carla D. Hayden as the 14th Librarian of Congress. Dr. Hayden is the first woman and the first African American woman to hold this position in the 214 years of the Library of Congress’ history.
President Obama nominated Dr. Hayden in February of this year because of her extensive and innovative experience as a career librarian. Prior to this appointment, Dr. Hayden started her career in Pittsburgh and Chicago and most recently served as the CEO of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore since 1993. Under her leadership, she brought the Enoch Pratt Free Library system in Baltimore into the digital age by increasing the number of computers at each library, expanding broadband service and the e-book collection. She also introduced plans for a new robotics lab for children and teenagers. Her advocacy and tenacity on issues surrounding the right for privacy, civil liberties, and her love for knowledge made her President Obama’s choice to take the helm at the Library of Congress.
THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT AND COMCAT ANNOUNCE NEW INITIATIVE
The U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development announced a new joint venture to closing the digital divide for residents in public housing. In partnership with Comcast, HUD-assisted residents with Comcast service are eligible for Internet Essentials. The ConnectHomes Initiatives will provide access to approximately two million families. Through ConnectHome, internet service providers, non-profits and the private sector are offering broadband access, technical training, digital literacy programs, and devices for residents in assisted housing units in 28 pilot communities across the nation. ConnectHome creates a platform to help ensure that students have access to high-speed internet for studying and doing their homework at home, as well as in school. Both HUD and Comcast see this initiative as a win-win for families that may not otherwise have access to the internet and believes that this new effort will allow for children to excel and keep pace with the rest of the world SAVE THE DATE: MARCH IN D.C On Saturday, August 27, 2016, Reverend Al Sharpton and National Action Network will join with our coalition partners including the American Federation of Teachers, to convene a rally focusing on the issue of gun violence prevention and stopping violence within our communities across the country one day before the 53rd anniversary of the historic 1963 March on Washington. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s son—Martin Luther King III—will be a co-convener.
FROM DEMONSTRATION TO LEGISLATION: ANNUAL LEGISLATIVE POLICY CONFERENCE
National Action Network (NAN) will host its annual Legislative and Policy Conference in Washington, D.C. from September 6-7th in Washington, D.C. The conference is designed for NAN Chapter Leaders and members to interact with Members of Congress, Administration officials, fellow activists and advocates to address issues that impact them on a daily basis. It is vital that we continue to advocate for legislative policies that protect our rights on matters such as a fair criminal justice system, access to the ballot box, sustainable jobs with a living wage, and an equitable public education. This two day conference will take place on Capitol Hill, and will feature a series of policy discussions and programs. If you are interested in attending, please contact the D.C. Bureau of National Action Network firstname.lastname@example.org QUOTE OF THE WEEK "Let me suggest something to help you with your speech," Reverend Al Sharpton told Donald J. Trump,the Republican presidential nominee who addressed delegates at the Republican Convention in Cleveland on Thursday. "Talk about voting rights. Talk about equal protection under the law. Talk about not the rhetoric of bringing America together, but bring us together with a policy of fairness for everybody."