For Immediate Release: Tuesday, February 11th
Contact: Gerald Hankerson, firstname.lastname@example.org, 206-249-1786
Seattle, WA -- Earlier today, Governor Jay Inslee announced that he is calling a moratorium on executions while he is office. Gerald Hankerson, the President of the Alaska, Oregon, and Washington State Area Conference of the NAACP, released the following statement in response:
“The NAACP is pleased with the Governor's courageous action of suspending the death penalty for Washington's inmates. This announcement marks an important step forward for Washington, and is a victory for the African American community. Nowhere are disparities between black and white inmates in criminal justice more apparent than in sentences deciding who lives and who dies. African American residents are disproportionately represented on death row, and our state is more likely to impose the death penalty on African American defendants than white defendants convicted of the same crime.
On behalf of the NAACP for the state of Washington and our community, I would like to thank Governor Inslee for halting executions in our state while he is in office. This is a bold step in the right direction and we appreciate his leadership. We won’t stop fighting until the death penalty is abolished in Washington, and we finally put an end to this inequitable law.”