Lawton NAACP Chapter President responds to National NAACP state travel advisory to Florida

Published: May. 24, 2023 at 4:45 PM CDT
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LAWTON, Okla. (KSWO) - The National Chapter of the NAACP recently announced a travel advisory to the state of Florida due to its regressive policies.

It comes right at the beginning of summer when people travel the most. That’s why Sherene Williams, the president of Lawton’s NAACP chapter, says the statement is necessary to let people know about the situation before they may travel to Florida.

The state is taking heat from the NAACP and the Human Rights Campaign group for what they say are attempts at erasing black history and regressive policies restricting programs that encourage diversity, inclusion, and equality in Florida schools.

The state has banned teaching critical race theory, rejected access for students to AP African American studies, and has statutes prohibiting teaching gender identity to students in Kindergarten to Eighth Grade.

“The Lawton NAACP Branch 6131 supports the NAACP’s President and CEO statement related to the travel advisory issued for Florida,” said Williams. “The statement is timely and necessary to expose and alert African Americans, people of color, the LGBTQ+ community, and women of the divisive, extreme laws and ideology that exists in the state of Florida.”

This state advisory is a monumental decision, marking the second state advisory the NAACP has ever issued. The first was for Missouri in 2017 after passing a bill that made it harder for employees to prove their race, gender, or sexual preference led to unlawful discrimination.

Williams says people planning to travel to Florida in the near future need to be safe, stay alert, and be aware of their surroundings at all times.