Faith leaders from across Georgia gathered Monday outside of a Home Depot location in DeKalb County as they continued calls for the company to speak out against the state’s new voting law.
It’s been two weeks since the group, which represents more than 1,000 churches across the state, called for a national boycott against Home Depot.
Bishop Reginald Jackson with Georgia’s AME Church says in those two weeks more states have passed or are considering bills that would add restrictions to voting. Jackson says Home Depot and other national brands need to speak forcefully against these bills and in support of federal voting-rights protection.
“Do not expect us to give you our dollars without you giving us your support,” said Jackson. “So we call upon Home Depot: Come out of the shadows, and come and join us in this struggle.”
Jackson says his coalition intends to “drive nails” into the false claims of voter fraud in 2020, Georgia’s new voting law and racism.
As he spoke, Jackson and other faith leaders held nails between their fingers, “as you noticed, we hold nails in our hands, these are not Home Depot nails,” he said.
Home Depot maintains that “all elections should be accessible, fair and secure” and that the company supports “broad voter participation.” The company also notes that it promotes voter registration, encouraged volunteering at polling locations and provided tech support and protective equipment during the 2020 election in Georgia.
After Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp signed into law Senate Bill 202 in late March, Jackson had threated a boycott against not only Home Depot but Georgia-based brands Coca-Cola and Delta Air Lines, too. He later singled out Home Depot after Coke and Delta took part in a roundtable over voting rights.
Jackson says Kemp’s assertion that the new law expands voting access only applies to rural areas with predominately white voters.
“If you live in parts of the state that benefit him, that may be true,” said Jackson. “But most Blacks in Georgia live in Fulton, Gwinnett and Clayton counties. And it makes voting for us harder. So we invite Gov. Kemp to come and let’s debate the truthfulness of SB 202.”
Despite a driving rain Monday, Jackson and a dozen other preachers crossed a busy street and briefly walked around inside Home Depot before reemerging outside for a prayer,
“Home Depot has ignored the Black church,” said the Rev. Timothy McDonald with First Iconium Baptist Church. “Home Depot has not written one letter, has not sent one text message, has not emailed one message to us to recognize the power of the Black church.”