Current Actions

  • TAKE ACTION! Thank Representatives Adams, Butterfield & Price for their support of the FAMILY Act!

    Last week, the FAMILY Act was reintroduced in Congress with support from three of our 13 North Carolina Congressional members: Rep. Alma Adams, Rep. G.K. Butterfield, and Rep. David Price.

    The FAMILY Act would establish a Family Medical Leave Insurance program that would provide working people with paid family medical leave to recover from childbirth or illness, care for an aging loved one or welcome a newborn or adopted child to the home.

    This policy would allow working Americans to be able to choose to be with their families when it matters most. Currently only 12% of working people in the U.S. have access to this type of leave, which means they are often left to choose between a paycheck or taking care of themselves and their families.

    We salute Representatives Adams, Butterfield, and Price for standing up for the working people of North Carolina. Will you join us in thanking them with a personal note? Take action below!

  • Tell Senators Burr & Tillis to Vote NO on Andy Puzder for Labor Secretary!

    President Trump has nominated fast-food burger CEO Andy Puzder to lead up the U.S. Department of Labor, the federal agency tasked with promoting the welfare of America’s wage earners and improving the health and safety of their working conditions. Unfortunately, Puzder’s career has largely been spent trying to destroy this mission, likely leaving North Carolina’s workers in a pickle when it comes to their workplace safety, wages, and opportunities for advancement into the middle class.

    As CEO of Hardees and Carl’s Junior, Puzder built his company on the back of workers:

    • He wants to replace his human workforce with robots. He told Business Insider last year that he was considering firing his human employees and replacing them with automated systems, because "[Machines are] always polite, they always upsell, they never take a vacation, they never show up late, there's never a slip-and-fall, or an age, sex, or race discrimination case.”
    • He ignores the safety of his female employees. A recent survey of Hardee’s workers found that two-thirds of the company’s female employees have suffered from sexual harassment from their superiors.
    • He refused to pay his workers what he promised. Puzder’s companies have faced dozens of fines from the California Department of Labor and a growing list of class action lawsuits focused on his company’s unwillingness to pay his employers overtime when they work more than 40 hours a week.
    • He violates basic workplace health and safety regulations on a regular basis. An astonishing 60 percent of the official investigations into Puzder’s labor practices found his company clearly violated workplace safety and wage and hour laws.

    This is why North Carolina’s Senators, Thom Tillis and Richard Burr, should look outside the bun for the nation’s next Labor Secretary and vote against Puzder’s nomination.

    There’s no time to spare. Next week the Senate will hold its first hearing on Puzder and a confirmation vote is likely to follow soon after. We’re pulling together an unprecedented coalition and organizing events around the country to make our voices heard and stop the Anti-Labor Secretary from coming into office and doing any more damage to working people.

    Take Action! Write Senators Burr and Tillis and tell them to vote NO on Andy Puzder for Labor Secretary! 

  • TAKE ACTION! Tell Senators Burr & Tillis to Oppose Confirmation of DeVos for Secretary of Education

    The committee vote on President Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, is expected to take place on January 31st. Ms. DeVos' confirmation hearing last week demonstrated her lack of preparedness and qualification for the position to which she was nominated.

    We must tell North Carolina Senators Richard Burr and Thom Tillis to OPPOSE DeVos' confirmation.

    Our country deserves a Secretary of Education who understands the responsibilities of the department and believes in value of public education. Unfortunately Betsy DeVos:

    • Has demonstrated no previous commitment to ensuring equal educational opportunity in schools;
    • Has never been an educator or worked directly with children and families in public schools;
    • Has never led a school, district or state agency tasked with educating students, or even been a public school parent or student;
    • Has exclusively focused on privatization instead of considering important public school values such as equity, quality, efficiency, transparency, and accountability;
    • Expressed during her confirmation hearing unwarranted and total deference to state flexibility in areas that are solely within the Department of Education’s purview, such as federal civil rights laws like the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA);
    • And has displayed a complete lack of interest in or concern over accountability for all schools receiving federal funds, such as Title I funding for students living in poverty, demonstrating her overall lack of understanding of the role accountability systems play in student outcomes.

    TAKE ACTION NOW! Use the form below to write Sen. Burr and Sen. Tillis and tell them to OPPOSE confirmation of Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education, or reach out to them using one of the numbers below:

    • Sen. Burr:  (202) 224-3154 or (800) 685-8916
    • Sen. Tillis: (202) 224-6342 or (704) 509-9087

  • TAKE ACTION! Tell NC Lawmakers, Stop the Medicaid Expansion Blockade

    On Friday, January 13, Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger and Speaker of the House Tim Moore sued both the state and federal department of Health and Human Services to block Governor Cooper’s efforts to extend access to 500,000 North Carolinians.

    To quote U.S. Congressman David Price, “For sheer human impact, refusing to expand Medicaid is the worst thing the North Carolina General Assembly has done.”

    Research shows that closing the Coverage Gap will not only help create jobs but also help increase business activity in all 100 counties. Medicaid expansion could prevent 1,000 unnecessary deaths annually, help 12,000 veterans receive care, and connect 144,000 North Carolinians to services for untreated behavioral health and substance use disorders.

    More importantly, most North Carolinians support plans to fix the health insurance gap. A poll conducted last year shows that both Democrats and Republicans support efforts to expand Medicaid. Overall, 72 percent of respondents wanted a plan to “fix the health insurance gap.”

    TAKE ACTION NOW! Tell Rep. Tim Moore and Sen. Phil Berger not to block efforts to close the coverage gap for 500,000 Tar Heels and create over 40,000 jobs throughout the state.

  • TAKE ACTION! Tell NC Lawmakers: Don’t Block Medicaid Expansion!

    On Friday, January 6, Governor Roy Cooper notified the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services of his plan to join 31 states and the District of Columbia to close the Coverage Gap.

    For over three years conservative lawmakers have blocked efforts to ensure that all North Carolina residents who make too little for Marketplace coverage but too much for Medicaid coverage have access to coverage to get the health care they need when they need it.

    For each year that lawmakers failed to close the Coverage Gap, the state:

    • Missed out on $2 billion in federal funds,
    • Further strained the budgets of rural hospitals, and
    • Jeopardized the financial security of nearly 15,000 North Carolina families facing catastrophic medical bills.

    In addition to providing economic benefits, closing the Coverage Gap would prevent 1,000 unnecessary deaths annually, help 12,000 veterans receive care, and connect 144,000 North Carolinians to services for untreated behavioral health and substance use disorders.

    More importantly, most North Carolinians support plans to fix the health insurance gap. A poll conducted last year shows that both Democrats and Republicans support efforts to expand Medicaid. Overall, 72 percent of respondents wanted a plan to “fix the health insurance gap.”

    TAKE ACTION! Tell House Speaker Tim Moore and Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger not to block efforts to close the coverage gap for 500,000 Tar Heels and create over 40,000 jobs throughout the state.

  • Tell lawmakers to vote NO on HB 17: Reject unconstitutional degradation of education governance & Governor’s personnel powers

    The NC Justice Center is calling on members of the North Carolina General Assembly to reject HB 17.

    HB 17 goes to extraordinary lengths to strip Governor-elect Roy Cooper’s power, slashing the number exempt positions he can oversee from 1,500 to 300, and eliminating his ability to make appointments to university campus boards of trustees.

    Additionally, the bill radically reorganizes governance of North Carolina’s public schools. In almost every possible way, the bill strips power from the State Board of Education to provide more authority to the newly-elected Republican Superintendent of Public Instruction, Mark Johnson. If the bill becomes law, it will certainly be challenged in court due to constitutional issues. The bill – which was unveiled under a cloud of secrecy last night – is quickly moving through the General Assembly without adequate public input or transparency.

    The North Carolina State Constitution clearly gives the State Board of Education the responsibility for running our public school system. The State Board, which consists of 11 members appointed to eight-year terms by the Governor, would be stripped of its powers under HB 17. The new law would unconstitutionally place these powers with the newly-elected Superintendent of Public Schools, Mark Johnson, a lawyer with no experience running a state agency. Article IX, Sec. 9 reads: “The State Board of Education shall supervise and administer the free public school system and the educational funds provided for its support…and shall make all needed rules and regulations in relation thereto, subject to laws enacted by the General Assembly.” Sections 2-6 of HB 17 strip the State Board of Education of their constitutionally-mandated powers.

    TAKE ACTION NOW! Tell lawmakers to vote NO on HB17!

    A summary of the bill can be found below:

    • Section 1: Shifts authority to appoint SBE student advisors from Governor and gives it to Superintendent.
    • Section 2: Changes SBE’s authority from establishing policy to establishing “all needed rules and regulations,” and further states that the Superintendent will “administer all needed rules and regulations adopted by the” SBE. It is unclear who will determine which rules and regulations are “needed.”
    • Section 3: Removes language stating that the Superintendent’s administration of the public school system is “subject to the direction, control, and approval of the State Board of Education,” seemingly providing the Superintendent the ability to ignore policies created by the SBE.
    • Section 4: Establishes that the Superintendent will get to determine organization of DPI and administer all public school funds without the current safeguard of being “subject to the direction, control, and approval of the State Board of Education.” 
    • Section 5: Further clarifies that the Superintendent, not the SBE would be in charge of administering all educational funds.
    • Section 6: Further clarifies that the Superintendent, not the SBE would be in charge of private gifts or grants.
    • Section 7:  Reduces the number of exempt positions serving at the will of the Governor from 1,500 to 300, and precludes his authority to place any exempt positions in the Office of Human Resources or his own budget office (OSBM).  This section further expands the number of exempt positions at DPI from 20 to 70.
    • Section 8:  Clarifies that the exempt positions at DPI would serve at the will of the Superintendent, rather than the SBE.
    • Sections 9 - 12:  Conforming changes to clarify that the “department head” of DPI is the Superintendent, not the SBE.
    • Section 13: Repeals language providing the SBE exemption from employees benefiting from public contracts.
    • Sections 14 - 15: Gives Superintendent sole authority in hiring the newly-created position of Achievement School District Superintendent and overseeing this controversial program. The language allows the Superintendent to select the ASD Superintendent and establish the ASD Superintendent’s salary at his sole discretion without any public input that had previously been required.
    • Section 16: Places the Superintendent in charge of North Carolina’s three residential schools for deaf or blind students.
    • Section 17: Eliminates Governor’s ability to appoint members to the Charter School Advisory Board and moves DPI’s Office of Charter Schools from the SBE to the oversight of the Superintendent.
    • Section 18 - 23: Make conforming changes to protect the Superintendent from civil liability as head of the agency.
    • Section 24: Places oversight of DPI’s School Planning Division with the Superintendent, rather than the SBE.
    • Section 25: Places oversight of DPI’s School Insurance Fund with the Superintendent, rather than the SBE.
    • Sections 26 - 27: Make conforming changes to protect the Superintendent from civil liability as head of the agency.
    • Section 28: Allows the Superintendent, not the SBE, to reorganize DPI to carry out budget cuts.
    • Sections 29 - 33: Make additional conforming changes and establish implementation and reporting dates.
    • Section 34: There is no Section 34.
    • Section 35: Eliminates the Governor’s four appointments to each UNC campus’s Board of Trustees.  These appointments would now be made by the General Assembly.
    • Section 36: Eliminates the Governor’s two appointments to the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics Board of Trustees.  These appointments would now be made by the General Assembly.
    • Section 37: Establishes effective date of changes to Sections 35 - 36.
    • Section 38: Would require the Governor to get “senatorial advice and consent” on all cabinet appointments.
    • Section 39: Establishes effective date of Section 38.
    • Sections 40 - 41: These sections were eliminated via Proposed Committee Substitute on 12/15/16.
    • Section 42: Severability clause, allowing remainder of bill to remain in effect if other sections are declared unconstitutional.
    • Section 43: Establishes effective date of Section 42.
    • Added via amendment in Rules Committee on 12/15/16: Language transferring the Child Safety Taskforce from the Department of Public Safety to DPI.

  • SIGN YOUR NAME: Tell Congress - Don’t vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act without a replacement plan!

    Over 600,000 North Carolinians enrolled in life-saving health insurance coverage through the Affordable Care Act’s Marketplace last year, and another 300,000+ uninsured state residents could still qualify for coverage through Medicaid as called for by the law. Nationwide, more than 20 million people have gained health insurance coverage thanks to the ACA.

    President-elect Donald Trump and conservative leaders in Congress have vowed to immediately repeal the ACA when they convene in late January. Even worse, they plan to repeal the law without voting on a replacement plan.

    Repealing the law without a plan to provide coverage will jeopardize the health, financial security, and overall well-being of millions of Americans, especially people living with pre-existing health conditions, resulting in nearly 30 million Americans losing coverage. What’s more, a repeal-without-replace vote would send the health care system into chaos.

    Tell Congress: NO REPEAL WITHOUT REPLACE! Don’t vote to repeal the Affordable Care Act without coming up with a replacement plan that provides continued access to quality, affordable coverage for North Carolinians.

  • COUNT ME IN

    Can we count on you to join us as we build towards a better North Carolina? Leave your name below and tell us what you think about our campaign.

  • I Pledge to Vote

    The issues we care about are decided by the people who will be elected in November. You can make a difference! Join us in standing up for fair policies that support all North Carolinians.

  • TAKE ACTION! Tell President Obama to protect Central Americans fleeing violence

    President Obama has the legal authority to protect Central Americans fleeing violence in their home countries.

    The President—through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security—has the legal authority to designate El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala for Temporary Protected Status (TPS), potentially benefiting 1.2 million undocumented immigrants. TPS provides protection from deportation and employment authorization for undocumented immigrants who cannot be safely returned to their country. 

    Legal experts aruge that TPS designation would likely be immune to the type of legal challenges that have stalled the President’s expansion of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents. Congress established TPS as a tool for responding to humanitarian emergencies like those in Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras, also known as the Northern Triangle countries.

    Take action! Tell President Obama to protect undocumented immigrants and designate El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala for Temporary Protected Status (TPS)

  • SIGN THE PETITION

    Sign our petition today in opposition to Senate Bill 817, Senate Bill 607 or any other TABOR-type legislation that reduces accountability and makes it impossible for North Carolina policymakers to take care of our state's priorities.

  • I Pledge to Vote
  • Take Action! Tell Governor McCrory and lawmakers to end legal discrimination in NC and repeal HB2

    We can all agree that North Carolina should never tolerate legal discrimination against anyone. Unfortunately, Governor McCrory recently signed HB2, legislation passed by the General Assembly that returns North Carolina to an era where businesses can discriminate against customers and employers can discriminate against workers. 

    Under the North Carolina Constitution, the legislature has the authority to determine what local governments can and cannot do. For decades, however, the General Assembly has provided our municipal and county governments freedom to regulate private businesses in a limited way, including prohibiting discrimination and boosting the wages of the employees of public contractors. The City of Charlotte recently used this authority to pass an important ordinance preventing public and private discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.

    Yet HB2, which was introduced, passed, and signed into law in just 12 hours, permits just this kind of discrimination. Specifically, the bill would:

    • Ban local governments from prohibiting businesses from engaging in any type of discrimination. The draft would effectively overturn Charlotte’s new ordinance, permit private businesses to discriminate against gays, lesbians, and transgendered residents, and prevent local communities from regulating other types of discrimination by private businesses.
    • Enact sweeping new restrictions on the ability of governments to protect workers and raise wages. Public contracts with private businesses have been an important tool used by local governments to raise wages and ensure basic job standards in their community. In an unprecedented overreach, the bill prohibits local governments from considering wages, benefits, and basic job safety standards when awarding public contracts—in effect telling local governments what they can and can’t do with their own money.
    • Eliminate state law remedies for employees who are fired based on their race, religion, color, national origin, age, sex or handicap. Specifically, section 3.2 of the bill ended an employee’s private right to sue an employer who fires him or her for any one of these discriminatory reasons. As a result, this leaves employees who are fired simply because they are black or a female or Christian without any effective protections under state law. North Carolina now joins Mississippi as the only state without any state law protecting private sector employees from workplace discrimination

    This legislation is bad news for North Carolina’s economy. It empowers businesses to discriminate and weakens the ability of local governments to raise wages—policies that will do nothing to create jobs or grow an economy that works for everyone.

    Take Action! Tell the General Assembly to stop discrimination and repeal HB2!

  • SIGN THE PETITION! Tell NCGA that cuts to unemployment insurance have hurt NC families and communities

    After the changes enacted in 2013, North Carolina’s unemployment insurance is providing too little for too short a period to too few of North Carolina’s jobless workers.

    • TOO LITTLE: North Carolina ranks 46th in the nation in its average weekly benefit amount of $233 which monthly would leave a North Carolina family with one adult, one child more than $1,800 short in meeting their basic needs.
    • TOO SHORT: North Carolina ranks last for its average duration of unemployment insurance of just 11 weeks. It is the only state to allow a maximum of just 13 weeks for all jobless workers.
    • TOO FEW: North Carolina ranks last for the number of jobless workers who receive unemployment insurance. Just 11 percent of jobless North Carolinians receive unemployment insurance.

    Tell the North Carolina General Assembly that they must rebalance the unemployment insurance system so that it supports families and communities with too few jobs to ensure that all can work.

    SIGN THE PETITION TODAY!

  • SIGN THE PETITION

    The NC Senate has approved putting arbitrary formulas and restrictions into our State Constitution that would make it impossible for lawmakers to respond to the priorities of North Carolinians for quality schools, healthy communities, and vibrant main streets.

    Sign our petition today in opposition to Senate Bill 607 or any other TABOR-type legislation that reduces accountability and makes it impossible for North Carolina policymakers to take care of our state's priorities.