The West Virginia legislature starts its 2017 session today. ACLU-WV will be your watchdog at the Capitol working every day to protect and expand civil liberties for all West Virginians. As the last few years have shown, we will need to stand together and make our voices heard if we are going to stop the coming assault on our rights. The election of Donald Trump has only emboldened those who seek to strip our hard-fought civil rights. We will need you more than ever this year.
We expect attacks on public education, LGBTQ rights, and women’s reproductive health. We also expect a misguided attempt to ramp up the failed “War on Drugs.”
We will be working hard to pass “Classrooms Not Courtrooms,” our legislative proposal to end the school to prison pipeline in WV. And we will be pushing to amend the state’s hate crimes law to include protections for LGBTQ people and to introduce the concept of restorative justice so that communities targeted with hate crimes are given a real opportunity to heal. We’ll need you to stand with us if we have any hope to advance our ambitious legislative agenda. Read more about our expectations for this legislative session.
At key moments during the legislative session, we will be calling on you to help us fight back against these and any other attacks on our civil liberties that may arise in this toxic political environment. Keep an eye out for our emails and be prepared to contact your legislators. Follow us on social media for more real time updates about what is going on at the Capitol, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
Finally, join us at the Capitol on Thursday, March 2, at 9 a.m. for our “All Kinds Are Welcome Here” Civil Liberties Lobby Day. We have a full day of events planned including:
- advocacy training
- breakout sessions to learn more about civil liberties issues
- viewing Senate and House floor sessions
- constituent meetings, and
- a happy hour to unwind and have some fun.
We are hoping for a massive turnout to show the legislature that West Virginians will stand up for civil rights and civil liberties. RSVP on Facebook for “All Kinds Are Welcome Here” Civil Liberties Lobby Day and do whatever you can to be in Charleston on Thursday, March 2!
PS: ACLU of WV has launched a monthly podcast and the first episode is out! Executive Director, Joseph Cohen, and Policy Director, Eli Baumwell, discuss our offensive and defensive strategies looking at the 2017 West Virginia Legislative Session. Check it out!