Orange County, North Carolina
Population (2000 Census): 118,227
Date Passed: 05/20/03
A Resolution Regarding the Protection of Civil Rights and Civil Liberties
Approved by: Orange County Board of Commissioners
WHEREAS, Orange County is committed to the human rights of its residents and to actions that preserve and protect those rights; and
WHEREAS, Orange County is home to a diverse population, including students, working people, and non-citizens, whose contributions to the community are vital to its character and function; and
WHEREAS, the Board of Commissioners is committed to upholding the civil rights and civil liberties of all persons in Orange County and their free exercise and enjoyment of any and all rights and privileges secured by the constitutions and laws of the United States, the State of North Carolina, and Orange County; and
WHEREAS, actions taken by the federal government, including the adoption of sections of the USA Patriot Act and several Executive Orders, now threaten those fundamental rights and liberties, including freedom of speech, assembly, and privacy; the right to counsel of due process in judicial proceedings; and protection from unreasonable searches and seizures, all of which are guaranteed by the Constitutions of North Carolina and the United States; and
WHEREAS, the Executive Branch of the United States government has drafted a "Domestic Security Enhancement Act" (also known as the "USA Patriot Act II"), which would further undermine those rights and liberties by expanding the government's surveillance authority; by allowing the sharing of sensitive personal information with local and state law enforcement agencies without consent or judicial process; and by authorizing secret arrests and detentions of persons not criminally charged.
NOW, THEREFORE, the Orange County Board of Commissioners does hereby resolve:
Section 1. That we encourage our state and federal legislative delegations to monitor the implementation of the USA Patriot Act and the Executive Orders cited herein and to work actively for the repeal of those portions of the Act and those Orders that violate the rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitutions of North Carolina and the United States.
Section 2. That we encourage our state and federal legislative delegations to work actively against adoption of the Domestic Security Enhancement Act cited herein and against any legislation or Executive Order that would undermine residents' fundamental rights and liberties.
Section 3. That we encourage local law enforcement agencies to continue to preserve residents; freedom of speech, religion, assembly, and privacy; the right to counsel and due process in judicial proceedings; and protection from unreasonable searches and seizures, even if requested or authorized to infringe upon those rights by federal law enforcement under powers granted by
Acts or Orders cited herein.
Section 4. That we encourage federal and state law enforcement officials acting within Orange County to work in accordance with the policies and procedures of an in cooperation with local law enforcement and to not engage in racial profiling or permit detentions without charges.
Section 5. That this resolution be forwarded to our state and federal legislative delegations on behalf of the residents of Orange County.
Community Group / Coalition: Orange County Bill of Rights Defense Committee