The Voting Rights Advancement Act (S. 1659/H.R. 2867) is a good start to strengthening the backbone and restoring the protections of the Voting Rights Act. In Shelby v. Holder, issued in June 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court invalidated a key provision of the Voting Rights Act, first passed in 1965 in response to persistent and purposeful discrimination through literacy tests, poll taxes, intimidation, threats, and violence.
“When the decision was shared with the public, I felt my heart get heavy,” said educator Sonia Smith. “After the decision, it is hard as an African-American woman who listened to her grandparents and parents share stories about ‘the struggle’ to continue to have faith in a country that claims that all are created equal.”