On April 21, the NAACP filed a federal lawsuit against two recently enacted laws enacted by Mississippi’s predominantly white Republican state government. The civil rights organization argues that these measures undermine the rights of the city of Jackson, which holds a majority-Black population, to control its criminal justice system.
Mississippi Republican Gov. Tate Reeves signed bills S.B. 2343 and H.B. 1020 into law. The controversial measures expand the state’s law enforcement jurisdiction and implement changes to the judicial system in the capital city, which is about 80 percent Black. Critics argue that these changes could disproportionately impact the city’s population and further exacerbate existing racial disparities in the criminal justice system.
NAACP President Derrick Johnson expressed his concerns in a statement, saying, “As our country continues to face the reality and consequences of our broken law enforcement and criminal justice systems, passing legislation to increase policing, install undemocratically appointed judges, and infringe on the constitutional right to protest is simultaneously irresponsible and dangerous.”