The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Sarah Bufkin: or 404.285.3413

The North Carolina NAACP and the Forward Together Movement Stand with Teachers, Students, Parents and Public School Supporters at Moral Monday on June 9

NC lawmakers lock protesters out, protesters make a statement at the door


Sixty years after the Brown v Board of Education decision, people from all across North Carolina will gather for Moral Monday at the General Assembly at 5 pm tomorrow, Monday, June 9 to say enough is enough to state budgets that take money from schools to give tax breaks to corporations and the wealthiest.

Teachers, parents, alumni, students of all ages and other concerned North Carolinians will petition their lawmakers to reject Senate Leader Berger's budget, to repent of the harm their drastic funding cuts have done to our children and their teachers, to repeal this unconstitutional voucher program that would send public money to unaccountable private schools and to restore and increase funds for public education to a sustainable level.

The Forward Together Moral Movement will hold a press conference in the Legislative Auditorium in the NC General Assembly on the third floor at 4 pm tomorrow, June 9 to explain why it is calling people all across the state again to Raleigh. Starting at 5 pm, there will be a rally on Halifax Mall behind the General Assembly building. At the rally, North Carolinians will call upon those attending to join the Movement in making a serious commitment to voter registration this summer.

"High-quality, diverse public education in North Carolina is a constitutional right - period. No exception," said Rev. Dr. William J. Barber, II, president of the North Carolina NAACP. "No party can undermine this. The American Legislative Exchange Council cannot overturn this. Tea Party extremists and their cohorts - Speaker Tillis, Senate Leader Berger and Gov. McCrory - cannot vote and budget this right away. We will not stand down on this principle in the courts, in the streets or anywhere. This extremist, anti-public education agenda has no business or right to undermine North Carolina's schools and universities. We call on Democrats, Republicans and independents who believe in public education to stand up, speak out and fight for our schools and universities, our children, our teachers and our support staff."

Last summer, thousands gathered at Moral Monday to protest this extremist General Assembly's decision to slash money from the education budget - hobbling public schools, leaving teacher pay at 47th in the nation, burdening students with skyrocketing tuition rates at public colleges and universities and funneling millions of taxpayer dollars to private schools through a voucher program.

This summer, Senate Leader Phil Berger put together a budget that attempts to raise teachers' wages, but does so at the expense of eliminating vital classroom support, teacher worker protections and other public school funding that enables our children to learn in safe, diverse and supportive environments.

"A society that persistently shortchanges education mortgages its future and sells off it soul," said Dr. Tim Tyson, Senior Research Scholar at Duke University and state Education chair of the North Carolina NAACP. "Our K-12 public schools and community colleges are the heart of our economy and the soul of our democracy. And a first-rate state university system like the one we have tried to build in North Carolina becomes an economic dynamo and a spiritual lighthouse. A second- or third-rate state university system, which is what the extremists in the General Assembly are willing to finance, is an enormous waste of money. It's like building an expensive house and failing to put a roof on it - no matter how much you spend on it, it's not worth having."

WHO: The NC NAACP and the Forward Together Moral Movement

WHAT: Moral Monday Rally and Action

WHEN: Tomorrow, Monday, June 9, 2014

Pre-Rally Press Conference: 4 pm

Rally and Action: 5 pm

WHERE: Pre-Rally Press Conference

Legislative Auditorium

General Assembly - Third Floor

16 West Jones St, Raleigh, NC

Rally and Action

Halifax Mall (behind the General Assembly)

16 West Jones St, Raleigh, NC