AFGE issued the following statement:
“We are appalled at the spate of fires at predominately black churches across the South that has occurred in the weeks following the tragic shooting at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all the parishioners at the affected churches.
“Several of these fires are being investigated as arson. Make no mistake, the person or persons setting these fires is just as guilty of terrorism as the young man who gunned down those nine parishioners at Emanuel.
"We stand in solidarity with disadvantaged people everywhere who are fighting for equality, justice and dignity at work, at home, and in their communities. These fights rarely are won without claiming victims along the way. But make no mistake, these cowardly acts of violence will not deter us and others from continuing to fight for equal rights for all people. In fact, our resolve is only strengthened.”