Photo caption: Florida State Capitol building in Tallahassee, Florida
The NAACP has issued a travel advisory for the state of Florida in direct response to policies pushed by state lawmakers.
“Under the leadership of Governor DeSantis, the state of Florida has become hostile to Black Americans and in direct conflict with the democratic ideals that our union was founded upon,” NAACP President & CEO Derrick Johnson said in the advisory. “He should know that democracy will prevail because its defenders are prepared to stand up and fight. We’re not backing down, and we encourage our allies to join us in the battle for the soul of our nation.”
The NAACP isn’t the only organization cautioning travelers about visiting Florida. The League of United Latin American Citizens and LGBTQ advocacy group Equality Florida have also both issued travel advisories for the state based on what the groups describe as DeSantis’ “aggressive attempts to erase Black history and to restrict diversity, equity, and inclusion programs in Florida schools.”
“Florida is openly hostile toward African Americans, people of color and LGBTQ+ individuals. Before traveling to Florida, please understand that the state of Florida devalues and marginalizes the contributions of and the challenges faced by African Americans and other communities of color,” the travel notice reads.
Last week, DeSantis signed a bill prohibiting colleges and universities in his state from spending money on diversity, equity and inclusion programs and initiatives.
According to Florida Senate Bill 266, which will go into effect July 1, colleges and universities, “may not expend any funds for programs or campus activities that violate the FEEA; advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion; or promote or engage in political or social activism.”
The new bill is the latest step in Ron DeSantis’ war on “woke” ideology, but far from the first.
DeSantis also rejected students’ access to AP African American studies courses in March.
The NAACP is encouraging Florida residents to push back against Gov. DeSantis’ regressive policies.
“Once again, hate-inspired state leaders have chosen to put politics over people, said Chair of the NAACP Board of Directors, Leon Russell. “We will not not allow our rights and history to be held hostage for political grandstanding. The NAACP proudly fights against the malicious attacks in Florida, against Black Americans. I encourage my fellow Floridians to join in this fight to protect ourselves and our democracy.”