This morning, Mayor Chilton released the following statement about yesterday’s events at the North Carolina General Assembly:
“Yesterday, I went to the General Assembly with Carrboro Aldermen Sammy Slade, Damon Seils and Michelle Johnson as well as Chapel Hill Town Councilmember Donna Bell. We went to lawfully and respectfully seek to exercise our State Constitutional rights under Article I, section 12: ‘The people have a right to assemble together to consult for their common good, to instruct their representatives, and to apply to the General Assembly for redress of grievances.’
“We asked to meet with House Speaker Thom Tillis. We obeyed building rules by not carrying signs or clapping or singing and we were unlawfully and unconstitutionally placed under arrest.
“We sought to apply to Speaker Tillis for a redress of our grievances about curtailment of voting rights, reductions in public education, the assault on women’s right to choose, the undermining of Jordan Lake water quality, the decision not to expand Medicaid, the reduction in unemployment benefits and several other issues of critical concern to the people of North Carolina.
“If Article I, section 12 does not mean that duly elected local representatives of the people have the right to come to the General Assembly while it is in session and peacefully, quietly and calmly request a meeting with a member of the State House of Representatives, then I have to ask: What does it mean?”