RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — At first glance, you might’ve mistaken it for a party.
However, the singing outside the North Carolina Legislative building Wednesday was a call to action.
“It’s just good to have an opportunity to talk to legislators and let them know how we feel—that we are here and not going anywhere,” said Anita Cunningham with NC Disaster Survival and Resiliency School.
Cunningham, along with dozens of people from various organizations from across the state, came together for the rally Wednesday evening.
They labeled the occasion “A Day of Outrage.”
People spent the day expressing their concerns and frustrations about issues like the new abortion law. Also top of mind were the state Supreme Court’s recent rulings, which reinstated the state’s voter ID law and ended voting rights for some felons.
The proposed state budget, which will be finalized next month, was another point of concern.
Advocates also said they want lawmakers to address the staffing shortages in state government. They are hoping for significant raises.
“A lot of the workers have left and went to other agencies that are paying more. We have worked throughout this pandemic,” stated Sekia Royall, President of the NC Public Service Workers Union. “We have put our families and ourselves in jeopardy trying to make sure these facilities run properly.”
The State Employees Association of North Carolina described the situation as a “crisis.” Last week, republican Senate Leader Phil Berger said he doesn’t see it that way.
“I don’t see it as a crisis. I see it as an issue we need to deal with, and we will deal with it,” Berger said.
CBS 17’s Nick Sturdivant: “Do you feel like lawmakers are hearing you?”
“I’m here to let them know we see what you are doing. This is unacceptable and we will make a change,” he replied.
The group behind the day of outrage, NC People’s Power Coalition, said it will hold a similar rally at the legislature on June 14.