Issues & Advocacy
The greatest struggle that Americans face today, one that cuts across the lines of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation and political party, is a broken economy and income inequality. America has fallen into a long-term, economic decline over the last 4 decades. Wages have been stagnant since the 1970s and we need a change that benefits the working people in our community. During this downturn America has lost millions of high-wage jobs and failed to replace them, leaving many American workers with a low-paying service job or no job at all. We need a city that embraces the renewable energy sector and is committed to the securement of healthy environment for all of its citizens. The NAACP is an advocate for fixing the crumbling infrastructure in the neglected parts of the city and for raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour that is tied to inflation, and we want special investments in communities that minorities preside in.
No taxation without representation. The right to vote must be protected for ALL Americans.
The right to vote is one of the most precious rights held dear by all Americans. The history of our nation is predicated on the ideal that it should be a democratic republic that works for every adult of voting age, even though it hasn’t always lived up to this creed. The NAACP has throughout its history has helped various men and women to fight for the right to participate in our electoral process in the face of extreme opposition and bigotry. This is why we believe that it is our responsibility to safeguard the victories of the past and expand access and fair elections right now and in the future.
Criminal justice and policing
In regards to Local Policing, the NAACP believes in the core idea of policing — to serve and protect the community. Police are a vital part of American society and that is why it’s so important to reform the system to make sure it serves all communities in our city equally. Police training should be retooled to emphasize de-escalation tactics, and body cameras should be mandatory on all officers. For-profit policing and for-profit prisons should be abolished. Furthermore, community oversight boards should be created and broken windows policing should be eliminated. Special prosecutors must also be appointed to hold police accountable.
Grand Rapids Police Draft Strategic Plan FY 2021 – 2023: View the full plan here.
View the full responses to the GRPD Strategic Plan.
Criminal Justice Reform
Alongside policing issues, America has an incarceration problem. It is often the vulnerable communities that the NAACP serves that pay the price for unequal policing and sentencing practices. We ask that our legislators, community leaders, and fellow citizens take actions that reform this broken system NOW, or else deal with the social and economic consequences of inaction.
America imprisons more of its own people than any other nation in the world. Even as the crime rate is on a steady decline, incarceration rates continue to climb. Incarceration rates are skewed in favor of targeting minorities with longer sentences and higher arrest rates. This trend has left devastation in its wake, as more and more of our fellow citizens find themselves unemployable and disenfranchised after serving their time. Children and partners lose their parents and loved ones to the system, perpetuating negative social and economic outcomes. We demand for reforms that protects the rights of ALL of our citizens, which includes demilitarizing the police, fighting to end the war of drugs, and expanding due process protections, among other things
We have worked with other organizations on making a 12 point plan for building trust between our cities inhabitants and the police force. The following are links of incidences that have occurred in our city.
Educating the citizenry of our city will pay dividends in the long run, with the economy getting back much more than it initially puts in. The NAACP will work with officials from all professions on producing quality schools for our children no matter what their background is. We will fight to end crushing the student debt for higher education would no longer burden young men and women trying to improve their lives through hard work. Education is the path for prosperity and when we all have access to it than we all succeed.
Minority and poorer communities are the hardest hits in terms on environmental neglect. We still have lead in our houses, water contamination in plastic, vapor fumes in houses and businesses on the south east side of town, and business establishments that are causing toxic sites underneath their institutions for years afterwards. The NAACP fights for the rights of citizens living in these areas to have clean and healthy home and workplace.
The mission of the NAACP is to ensure equal political, educational, social, and economic rights for all persons and to eliminate race-based discrimination. This mission includes a focus on the right of African Americans and other people of color to have optimal health outcomes and access to timely, quality, affordable health care. African Americans continue to have the highest incidence, prevalence and mortality rates from chronic diseases like cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity, and issues like HIV/AIDS continue to overwhelm the Black community more so than any other racial or ethnic group.
The NAACP is committed to eliminating the racial and ethnic inequities that exist within our health care system that undermine communities of color their life opportunities and their ability to contribute fully to the common good.
National NAACP Federal Action Alerts
– Michigan DMV
Rights, Responsibilities, and Fraud Reporting
– State of Michigan Government
Local City Meetings
Kent County Commission
Regular, public meetings of the Board of Commissioners are scheduled at 8:30 a.m. on the second and fourth Thursday of each month
Kent County, Michigan
Kent County School Board
Board meetings are held the 3rd Monday of each month at 6:00 p.m. unless noted otherwise.
School Board of Education
Grand Rapids Commission:
Regular meetings of the City Commission area scheduled twice per month on Tuesday at 7:00pm.
City of Grand Rapids Government
Grand Rapids Schoolboard
The 1st and 3rd Monday at 7 PM
Grand Rapids Board of Education
Wyoming City Council
Regular City Council meetings are held on the 1st and 3rd Monday at 7 pm
City of Wyoming Government
Regular Board meetings are held the 2nd and 4th Mondays of the month at 6:00pm. in the Board room at the Administration Building.
Wyoming Board of Education
Grandville City Council
Regular council meetings are held on the 2nd and 4th Monday of each month at 7:00 pm.
City of Grandville Government
Grandville School Board
Board of Education meetings are open to the public and are held on the first and third Mondays of each month at 7 pm.
Grandville Public Schools
Jenison (Georgetown) Township Board
Regular township board meetings are held 2nd and 4th Monday of each month at 7:00 pm.
Jenison School Board
Regular Schoolboard meetings are held 2nd and 4th Monday of each month at 7:00 pm
Jenison Public Schools
Regular Commission meetings are held 2nd and 4th Monday of each month at 6:30 pm
City of Walker