In light of recent events and debates in Florida, the Office of State Senator Dwight Bullard, Democratic Black Caucus of Florida, ACLU of Florida and Florida Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials have come together to launch the “Florida Speaks Tour” scheduled to kick off in Pensacola, Florida on Saturday, September 14, 2013 at Bethel AME Church. The Florida Speaks tour is a series of town hall assemblies allowing residents of Florida the opportunity to publicly address their frustrations and hardships as a result of violations to their civil liberties, racial profiling, “Stand Your Ground” law, overuse of law enforcement in schools, and lack of access to suitable healthcare.
“Too often Floridians feel as though Tallahassee is out of touch with the day to day challenges that they face,” Senator Bullard stated. “This is an opportunity to allow those voices to be heard, so that we can create solutions based around some of their most pressing concerns.”
Henry Crespo, president of the Democratic Black Caucus added, “As an organization we are dedicated to addressing voter concerns. This effort helps to raise the collective voices of residents across this great state that has been negatively impacted by current policies. We stand committed towards taking proactive steps in this much needed effort.”
Throughout the tour the office of Senator Bullard will be collecting and documenting the testimonies of town hall participants in an effort to bring awareness to lawmakers, the governor, and his cabinet, to the many issues plaguing residents across the state. These town halls are expected to set in motion the creation of an action plans to address these concerns and decrease the potential of further hardships to Floridians.
Howard Simon stated “During the last few years, the people of Florida have witnessed unprecedented and wide-reaching assaults on their civil liberties and personal freedoms by their own legislature and Governor,” said Howard Simon, Executive Director of the ACLU of Florida. “Floridians have seen assaults on voting rights, the rights of women, poor people and public employees. We’re proud to participate in these forums to help people speak out and work to restore rights that have been under attack.”.
“The Florida Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials (FBC LEO) supports the efforts of State Senator Bullard and encourages the citizens of Florida to come out to these tours and speak up for change. With your testimonials Senator Bullard will be in a better position to affect the change this State needs,” says Hayward Benson, immediate past president, FBC LEO.