Read a PDF of our statement here.

Yesterday, the U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed H.R. 35, the Emmett Till Antilynching Act. The bill, which passed by a vote of 410-4, makes lynching a federal hate crime. The NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) applauds the advancement of this long overdue important legislation – and urges the Senate to immediately take up and pass the bill.

“Lynching is a heinous crime that stole thousands of Black lives throughout the 20th century – and it also continues to readily contribute to racial trauma today,” said Sherrilyn Ifill, LDF’s President and Director-Counsel and author of On The Courthouse Lawn: Confronting the Legacy of Lynching in the Twenty-First Century, a book that examines the legacy of lynching in America. “The Emmett Till Antilynching Act is a commendable step in the right direction toward achieving restorative justice, and it is imperative that the Senate vote on and pass this legislation as soon as possible in order to finally make lynching a federal hate crime.”

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Founded in 1940, the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) is the nation’s first civil and human rights law organization. LDF has been completely separate from the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) since 1957—although LDF was originally founded by the NAACP and shares its commitment to equal rights. LDF’s Thurgood Marshall Institute is a multi-disciplinary and collaborative hub within LDF that launches targeted campaigns and undertakes innovative research to shape the civil rights narrative. In media attributions, please refer to us as the NAACP Legal Defense Fund or LDF.

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