CLASP Responds to Charlottesville

August 15, 2017

This statement from the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) can be attributed to Oliva Golden, CLASP Executive Director

Washington, DC, August 15, 2017—The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) stands firmly with others in expressing outrage over the white supremacy rally in Charlottesville over the weekend. As an anti-poverty organization that has been focused for nearly 50 years on social justice, we recommit ourselves to strongly resisting the domestic terrorism, violence, and racism that continue to plague our nation and threaten the safety, access to opportunity, and economic success of people of color, immigrants, Muslims, Jews, and others who are marginalized and oppressed.

The muted and delayed response from the Trump Administration sent a message that implicitly validated these violent acts of hatred that have no place in our society. That message is even starker when viewed alongside the administration’s ongoing series of policies and proposals that would devastate low-income people, communities of color, immigrants, Muslims, and others. In both rhetoric and actions, this administration represents the greatest threat to low-income people in CLASP’s history through its efforts to shred health care and other core federal programs, terrorize immigrants and their families, ban refugees, reinstate failed “law and order” policing practices, and ignore basic civil rights—among other egregious actions.

That’s why CLASP is fighting back to promote and defend public policies that embody American ideals and promote our true shared interest:  a nation where everyone can thrive without facing the barriers of racism, violence, and poverty. Among many other next steps, that means defending the DACA program that allows young people who have grown up in the United States to contribute to their communities and the nation through schooling and jobs; ensuring that federal resources are not diverted to the failed strategies of mass incarceration and criminalization of poverty that have historically devastated people of color and their families; and advancing a positive vision of economic opportunity and justice in states and cities across the country. As a proud member of the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, we join with our colleagues and partners in decrying the violence, hateful rhetoric, and deeply disturbing actions of this administration and fighting for a very different path forward. 

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The Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) is a national, nonpartisan, anti-poverty organization advancing policy solutions that work for low-income people. With nearly 50 years of trusted expertise, a deeply knowledgeable staff, and a commitment to practical yet visionary approaches to opportunity for all, CLASP lifts up the voices of poor and low-income children, families, and individuals, equips advocates with strategies that work, and helps public officials put good ideas into practice. The organization’s solutions directly address the barriers that individuals and families face because of race, ethnicity, and immigration status, in addition to low income. For more information, visit and follow @CLASP_DC.

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