SCLC Annual Conference Begins In Downtown Memphis

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) - Thousands of people are in Memphis for a big convention happening this weekend. Thursday, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference's 59th national convention begins at the Peabody Hotel in downtown Memphis.

The civil rights organization dates back to the Montgomery bus boycott in Alabama, which sparked the civil rights movement.

Registration opened at 10:00 a.m. Thursday, with the opening ceremony and presidential address happening Thursday night at 7:00 p.m.

Earlier this week, SCLC leaders held a news conference to announce the agenda for this year's conference. Organizers discussed the sanitation grants Mayor Jim Strickland announced earlier this month. That grant will give $50,000 to the workers from 1969 who are still alive.

Also, the organization discussed a new record label they are creating with hip-hop artists. They plan to reveal the artists later this week.

Ultimately, the SCLC says it's still working for causes that they pushed when Dr. Martin Luther King Junior was alive.

"The same problems we had 50 years ago we have today,” says Dr. Charles Steele, President, Southern Christian Leadership Conference. “Good example, in the last 8 to 9 years we've lost 53% of our black wealth. What is our black wealth? Our homes, our houses. It's going to take 2 generations to get it back."

 

For organizers, these days it's about careful strategy to reach their goal. The SCLC conference wraps up Sunday.


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