NAACP Warns Minorities, Women Heading To Missouri: 'They May Not Be Safe'

NAACP delegates have approved a travel advisory warning marginalized groups that “they may not be safe” if they go to Missouri because their civil rights are likely to be violated.

The delegates voted Wednesday to nationally adopt the advisory, which was put in place statewide in June, according to the Springfield News-Leader. The advisory ― directed at people of color, women, people who identify as LGBTQ and those with disabilities ― cites recent legislation signed by Gov. Eric Greitens (R) that makes it even more difficult to sue for housing or employment discrimination.

NAACP Springfield chapter President Cheryl Clay and other chapter members emphasized that this is not a boycott, but a warning and a response to the legislation.

“Our ongoing issues of racial profiling, discrimination, harassment and excess violence towards people of color have been further exacerbated by the passage and signing of [Senate Bill] 43,” Clay said in a statement to the News-Leader.

“Not all the communities have the desire or the will to do the right thing for people in their community,” Clay added. “Thus, this is why Missouri has earned the travel advisory for the whole state.”

In addition to the bill, the advisory condemns the state for a number of issues dating back to the Missouri Compromise of 1819. Those include “racial and ethnic disparities in education, health, economic empowerment and criminal justice,” a “long history” of racial violence and harassment, and recent data that shows black drivers were 75 percent more likely to be pulled over by cops than white drivers in 2016.

It also cites the racism that led to protests against University of Missouri in 2015 and a lawmaker’s comments on the House floor claiming that there’s a “distinction between homosexuality and just being a human being.”

Just days before the national delegation voted, Missouri NAACP President Rod Chapel told The Associated Press that he thinks “everybody’s civil rights are now in jeopardy.”

After the delegates approved the travel advisory, Chapel told the AP that he hopes the move will boost awareness. He said that the advisory will be up for ratification by the national board in October.

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Racism

Let’s not give more weight to the actions of one professor than to students who have been forced to confront racism on campus. <br /><br />This entire ordeal is the result of a <a href="http://www.themaneater.com/stories/2015/9/16/msa-president-payton-head-combats-campus-discrimin/">litany</a> <a href="http://www.themaneater.com/stories/2015/10/5/lbc-homecoming-royalty-harassed-traditions-plaza/">of</a> overt incidents of <a href="http://www.themaneater.com/stories/2015/10/29/swastika-drawn-residence-hall-feces/">racism</a>, ranging from a <a href="http://www.themaneater.com/stories/2015/10/29/swastika-drawn-residence-hall-feces/">swastika smeared in feces</a> on the wall of a residence hall to <a href="http://www.themaneater.com/stories/2015/9/16/msa-president-payton-head-combats-campus-discrimin/">regular tales of hate speech</a> used toward minority students.<br /><br />Protesters directed their anger at Wolfe after he refused to engage with them <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/tim-wolfe-homecoming-parade_56402cc8e4b0307f2cadea10?snlpiudi">during a demonstration at the school's Homecoming parade</a> in October. He instead forced his motorcade through, clipping a student in the process. <br /><br />A graduate student named Jonathan Butler later started a hunger strike to protest the school's response and <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/protests-at-university-of-missouri-get-boost-from-athletes_56409c70e4b0307f2cadf5ce">earned the support of the university's football team</a>, which began boycotting any football-related activities.
Let’s not give more weight to the actions of one professor than to students who have been forced to confront racism on campus.

This entire ordeal is the result of a litany of overt incidents of racism, ranging from a swastika smeared in feces on the wall of a residence hall to regular tales of hate speech used toward minority students.

Protesters directed their anger at Wolfe after he refused to engage with them during a demonstration at the school's Homecoming parade in October. He instead forced his motorcade through, clipping a student in the process.

A graduate student named Jonathan Butler later started a hunger strike to protest the school's response and earned the support of the university's football team, which began boycotting any football-related activities.

Money

Following months of unrest on campus, Wolfe resigned Monday only after the Mizzou football team joined the protests.<br /><br />Had the team forfeited this weekend's game against Brigham Young University, the school would've been <a href="http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2015/11/mizzou-tim-wolfe-resignation/414987/">hit with a $1 million fine</a>, not to mention the financial losses associated with ticket sales, stadium concessions and TV distribution deals, notes The Atlantic.
Following months of unrest on campus, Wolfe resigned Monday only after the Mizzou football team joined the protests.

Had the team forfeited this weekend's game against Brigham Young University, the school would've been hit with a $1 million fine, not to mention the financial losses associated with ticket sales, stadium concessions and TV distribution deals, notes The Atlantic.

Health Care

Under pressure from state Sen. Kurt Schaefer (R-Columbia), who "<a href="http://themissouritimes.com/22797/mizzou-drops-planned-parenthood-privileges/">pledged to get MU out of the abortion business</a>," MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin asked for a review of university health policies this September. This resulted in the <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/planned-parenthood-university-of-missouri_564219bae4b0b24aee4bdd97">loss of access privileges</a> for Planned Parenthood doctors. <br /><br />The changes are scheduled to take effect Dec. 1, at which point the Planned Parenthood clinic in Columbia <a href="http://themissouritimes.com/22797/mizzou-drops-planned-parenthood-privileges/">will lose its ability to perform abortions</a>.<br /><br />The move has met considerable resistance on campus. Petitions asking the chancellor to reverse his decision have garnered more than 2,500 signatures from students, faculty, staff and community members.<br /><br />The same day Wolfe announced his resignation, Loftin said <a href="http://www.kansascity.com/news/local/article43827399.html">he would step down</a> at the end of the year. A <a href="http://www.columbiatribune.com/news/education/deans-faculty-members-call-for-loftin-s-dismissal/article_3b3c56d7-f432-573b-b02d-6787228c5369.html">letter from nine deans</a> at MU accused Loftin of creating a "toxic environment through threat, fear and intimidation." <br /><br />It's <a href="http://www.komu.com/news/planned-parenthood-calls-for-loftin-to-make-changes-before-leaving/">unclear if Loftin will reinstate privileges</a> for Planned Parenthood doctors before his departure.
Under pressure from state Sen. Kurt Schaefer (R-Columbia), who "pledged to get MU out of the abortion business," MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin asked for a review of university health policies this September. This resulted in the loss of access privileges for Planned Parenthood doctors. 

The changes are scheduled to take effect Dec. 1, at which point the Planned Parenthood clinic in Columbia will lose its ability to perform abortions.

The move has met considerable resistance on campus. Petitions asking the chancellor to reverse his decision have garnered more than 2,500 signatures from students, faculty, staff and community members.

The same day Wolfe announced his resignation, Loftin said he would step down at the end of the year. A letter from nine deans at MU accused Loftin of creating a "toxic environment through threat, fear and intimidation." 

It's unclear if Loftin will reinstate privileges for Planned Parenthood doctors before his departure.

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