Today, April 4th, 2010, Easter Sunday and the anniversary of Martin Luther King’s assassination, poor people and their allies unite with the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign (PPEHRC) in the March To Fulfill The Dream -advancing Dr. King’s dream of ending poverty.
The March to Fulfill the Dream will visit dozens of cities between New Orleans and Detroit, the site of the US Social Forum 2010, to highlight the urgent need for affordable housing and healthcare in the United States. Housing, healthcare, and jobs are human rights according to the U.N. Universal Declaration of Human Rights, endorsed by the U.S. in 1948. Continuing the legacy of Dr. King’s 1968 Poor People’s Campaign, which was cut short by his assassination, the tour is part of a larger strategy to unite poor people’s groups and their allies from across the country to build a diverse nonviolent movement to end poverty.
The PPEHRC caravan will visit many cities, including historic cities from the Civil Rights movement, for which Dr. King became the famous spokesperson. Each stop will include marches, demonstrations, and speak-outs led by poor people from the local cities, dramatizing the plight of today’s swelling numbers of the poor. Among the stops is Marks, Mississippi, where Dr. King launched the original Poor People’s Campaign in 1968 with a march and caravan to the nation’s capital.
“We don’t expect the changes we need to come from Washington or Wall Street, so we are building a mass movement to fight for the healthcare, housing, and jobs we need,” stated Khalilah Collins of Women in Transition, a PPEHRC member group in Louisville, Kentucky. “We are developing leaders from the ranks of the poor to create solutions ourselves and build a sustainable system.”
The Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign is a national coalition of over 125 grassroots anti-poverty groups, most of which are led directly by poor and homeless people. It is the nation’s largest anti-poverty organization that is led directly by the poor.
The March to Fulfill the Dream and the U.S. Social Forum (USSF) will connect poor people and anti-poverty groups from across the country with a special focus on education and leadership development.
The caravan, and the USSF itself, where more than 20,000 people representing progressive groups from across the U.S. and the world will gather, will provide spaces for poor people and their allies to further develop the analysis and strategy to build the movement and challenge the structures that cause poverty.
“All major social movements in history have been led by those most affected by problems. The Civil Rights, American Revolution, and Women’s Suffrage movements were all led by those most oppressed by injustice. The crisis in our economic system gets fixed when poor people are organized to lead the fight,” said Cheri Honkala, National Organizer of PPEHRC.
We march, united, to bridge the gap across race lines, across gender lines, and across class lines, to “Fulfill the Dream”.
Join the march through major cities; the map route can be found here and on the website of PPEHRC (http://old.economichumanrights.org/USSF2010/route.shtml)
* New Orleans – April 4, 5,6,7
* Waveland – April 8,9,10
* Mobile – April 11, 12, 13
* Selma – April 14, 15 ,16
* Montgomery – April 17, 18, 19
* Birmingham – April 20, 21, 22
* French Camp – April 23, 24, 25
* Glendora – April 26 27, 28
* Marks – April 29, 30 and May 1st
* Memphis – May 2, 3 ,4
* Chattanooga – May 5, 6, 7
* Nashville – May 8,9,10
* Knoxville – May 11, 12, 13
* Louisville – May 14 15 16
* Lexington – May 17, 18, 19
* Cincinnati – May 20 21 22
* Dayton – May 23, 24, 25
* Columbus – May 26, 27 , 28
* Mansfield – May 29
* Akron – May 30, 31
* Youngstown/Warren – June 2-4
* Cleveland – June 5-8
* Lorain/Sandusky – June 9-11
* Toledo – June 12-14
* Benton Harbour – June 15-17
* Flint – June 18-20
* Detroit – June 21 and on to forum