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“We will not be silenced and will never give in to their voter suppression attacks”

Graham, N.C. ­– Residents in Alamance County, North Carolina, will gather Saturday to rally behind members of the “Alamance 12” defendants as they lead a march to an early voting location to cast their votes.

“We cannot be afraid. If voting didn’t matter, they wouldn’t work so hard to keep us from doing it,” said Keith Sellars, an Alamance 12 defendant who faced unjust felony voter fraud charges for voting in 2016, and is a key organizer of this event.

Earlier this year, 12 residents in Alamance County were unjustly targeted and forced to face charges for voter fraud in the 2016 elections. Many of the “Alamance 12” defendants accepted plea agreements, and spoke out about the suppressive impact of the charges they faced. Now, several defendants are leading the charge to encourage others to vote, and refusing to be intimidated into silence.

EVENT: Alamance 12 defendants Keith Sellars, Whitney Brown, Anthony Haith, and Taranta Holman will lead a march of poor and working people through downtown Graham, past the confederate memorial, to the main polling location on Saturday for early voting.

DATE/TIME: Saturday, October 27, Noon to 4 p.m.

WHERE: Starts at Children’s Chapel United Church, 334 E. Harden Street, Graham, N.C.

There will be a short program by the Alamance 12 before marching to the polling location to vote. Down Home North Carolina will be making an 8-stop circuit in a school bus through rural and low-income locations in the county to pick up participants

The event is being promoted through door canvasses, Facebook ads, and social network outreach, led by the Alamance 12.

VISUALS:

  • Rally at a church.
  • A long line of marchers in procession with placards through downtown Graham, past confederate statue.
  • School bus decorated with banners picking up voters from low-income and rural neighborhoods in Alamance County.

Background:

Members of the “Alamance 12,” including Whitney Brown, Keith Sellars, Anthony Haith, and Taranta Holman, have joined Down Home North Carolina‘s voter outreach and civic engagement programs, contacting low-income voters and voters of color and encouraging them to get out and vote. They have participated in a relational voter program, leafleting, candidate forums, phone banking and direct mail efforts.

Brown, Haith and Holman are participating even though their voting rights have not been restored. They are motivated to improve their communities, fulfill their civic duty, and are determined not to let their charges prevent them from participating in our democracy.

“We are inspired by the bravery and courage of these defendants, who have paid a heavy price for attempting to answer their civic duty to vote,” said Todd Zimmer, co-director of Down Home North Carolina. “Their refusal to be intimidated has catapulted a new vigor and energy in our community to ensure the voices of poor people, people of color, and formerly incarcerated voters in North Carolina will never be silenced.”

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People’s Action is a national network of 40 state and local grassroots, power-building organizations united in fighting for justice. Our organization recently released a vision for a national Homes Guarantee that has already prompted major legislation from champions including U.S. Reps. Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Rashida Tlaib. We operate the largest progressive rural organizing project in the country. Prior to endorsing Sen. Bernie Sanders for president, we completed a national forum series that The Nation called “the most in-depth, people-powered forum” of the 2020 cycle.”

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