ATLANTA — Today, Democratic Party of Georgia Chairwoman Nikema Williams issued the following statement on the Georgia legislature finally passing hate crimes legislation after 14 years:
“Today, the Georgia legislature finally passed a hate crimes bill, after tireless work from advocates across Georgia, and more than a few delays and stunts from Georgia Republicans to hijack this bill. We are thrilled that this law has finally passed after years of advocacy, but let’s be clear: we will not forget that this bill only came to light after 14 years of delays under Republican leadership, the murder of Black men before our eyes, and the pain of marginalized communities across our state.
We also will not soon forget that before Senate Republicans agreed to vote on this bill, they forced through a bill adding law enforcement as a protected class under Georgia’s hate crimes statute — despite the fact that law enforcement officers are already given additional protections under the law, and are all too often at the center of violence against the marginalized Georgians that the hate crimes law is looking to protect.
This is only the first step in seeking justice and accountability for vulnerable Georgians. When Georgia Democrats take back the House this fall, we will demand more from our leaders, and keep working for a justice system that truly protects every person in our state.”