Photo by InDaHouseMedia/JEROME DORN
Votercades will be followed by outdoor and virtual activism villages to bring attention to the urgent need to protect voting rights
ATLANTA – In an effort to bring attention to the onslaught of voter suppression laws and ignite public support for bills to restore protections of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, the Georgia Coalition for the Peoples’ Agenda (Peoples’ Agenda) will join local and national partners to host Votercades, teach-ins and other events throughout the state on John Lewis Voting Rights Day of Action, 2 PMSaturday May 8, 2021. For a city by city schedule of Votercades and events visit https://tinyurl.com/peoplesagenda.
Charles Steele, president, SCLC; Jason Carter, grandson of former President Jimmy Carter; Dr. Bernice King and Martin King III, the children of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; Cheryl Lowery, daughter of Dr. Joseph E. Lowery; and other children of civil rights leaders will be on hand to kick off the Votercades during a press conference 2 PM Saturday May 8, 2021 at The King Center on Auburn Ave. The press conference will be broadcasted as part of a national press conference hosted by Transformative Justice Coalition in Washington, DC.
“We expect the participation on Saturday to be even larger than our Votercades during the runoffs because on the same day, same time, concerned citizens will drive through various U.S. cities to bring attention to the urgent need for policies that make voting easier, not harder,” said Helen Butler, executive director of the Peoples’ Agenda. “Here in the cradle of the Civil Rights Movement we are determined to send a loud message that, as our founder, Dr. Joseph Lowery said, ‘We’re not going back. We’ve marched too hard, died too young and bleed too profusely to allow anyone to turn back the hands of time on our journey to justice’ — even in a global pandemic.”
Created in response to the COVID-19 crisis, Votercades are presidential-style motorcades that are safer than marching during the pandemic. In many cities they will be followed by outdoor or virtual activism villages providing information for citizens to become civically involved. Votercades were instrumental in bringing attention to the importance of the 2020 election and were used to turn out Black and Brown voters in record numbers during the Georgia Senate runoff in Jan. Dekalb and Clayton County Votercades and a caravan from The Carter Center will join the Atlanta group at The King Center.
After the press conference they will proceed through the city, ending at Cascade United Methodist Church where they will have a teach-in. Other Georgia cities hosting events include: Athens, Albany, Augusta, LaGrange, Loganville, Macon, Savannah, Statesboro, and Hinesville. For starting locations go to https://tinyurl.com/peoplesagenda and for Gwinett County, https://tinyurl.com/peoplesagenda1 . Partners joining the Peoples’ Agenda for the John Lewis Voting Rights Day of Action include leaders from civil rights, faith, labor and the business community the Voting Rights Alliance, Clayton County Black Women’s Roundtable and Westside Neighbors United in Macon.
Current bills the groups are supporting are S1 (For The People Act); HR 4 (The John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act); and HR 51 (Washington, DC Admissions Act), making the District of Columbia the 51st state and empower the predominately Black residents with equal voting rights. Georgia Coalition for the Peoples’ Agenda is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization performing year-round voter registration, education and mobilization in Black communities throughout Georgia. Led by board chair, Rev. J. A. Milner, and Butler, the organization has headquarters in Atlanta and offices in Athens, Albany, Macon, Augusta, LaGrange and Savannah. For more information visit www.thepeoplesagenda.org, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Peoples’ Agenda at (404) 653-1199.