25th Annual Martin Luther King March and Celebration

Monday, January 16th | 10:00 a.m. | Loudoun County Courthouse Lawn

Families, friends, and community organizations from all over Loudoun County will come together on the Loudoun County Courthouse lawn in Leesburg for the Annual March and Celebration honoring the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The theme of this year’s celebration is:
Community Power for Change & Courage to Create a Just World

Featuring Keynote Speaker Blake D. Morrant
Dean and the Robert Kramer Research Professor of Law
at The George Washington University Law School

Bring your nonperishable food items to Douglass Community center
between 8AM and 1:30PM for a FOOD DRIVE to benefit Loudoun Interfaith Relief

For more information visit: www.facebook.com/MLKMarchLeesburg, twitter.com/MLKmarch, call 540-955-8186, or email themarch08@yahoo.com

2017 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration Schedule:

8:00 AM – 1:30 PM – Food Drive at Douglass Community Center
9:00 AM- MLK- Love to Unity Community Dialogue
10:00 AM- Program starts at Douglass. 2017 Program Theme: “Community Power for Change and Courage to Create a Just World”
10:00 AM – Marchers assemble at the Loudoun County Courthouse
10:15 AM – Invocation
10:30 AM – March begins – Courthouse to Douglass Community Center
11:00 AM – Refreshments and visiting at Douglass Community Center
12:00 PM – Speaker: Blake D. Morrant followed by music and inspirational performances
1:30 PM – Conclusion of program and clean up

mlkday2017

Collision or Cooperation: Policing and Race

Thomson_Chapman-Interview-2-690x450Last week the Loudoun Tribune sat down with Loudoun’s top cop Mike Chapman and local NAACP president Phillip Thompson, to talk about policing, traffic stops, Black Lives Matter and more. The following are excerpts of that conversation.

Are relations between the African-American community and local police worse than in the recent past, or are incidents more visible thanks to body cams, cell phone cameras, YouTube and the 24/7 news cycle?

THOMPSON: Nationwide you’ve seen acts of violence against unarmed black men where there have been no consequences. When there are no consequences there is a concern that it’s open season. When you fly in a plane you’re taught to believe it’s safe until you see pictures of a plane crash. Then you start thinking about how safe it is. It’s the same thing with violence against young black men. Seeing it on television makes us feel less safe, and that adds to the perception that there’s a problem between law enforcement and the African-American community.

With everything going on, we haven’t had an act of racial violence here in Loudoun and my goal is to make sure it doesn’t happen.

Read more in the Loudoun Tribune

NAACP leader calls Loudoun County Public Schools’ diversity training ‘a joke’

In response to community criticism over the lack of diversity of its teaching staff, Loudoun County Public Schools is offering a “diversity training workshop” to all of its hiring managers this summer. A local NAACP leader says the effort is “a joke.”

LCPS_SealThe Loudoun chapter of the NAACP began pressing the school system to be more aggressive in hiring minority teachers in November when a school district report showed 88 percent of its teachers are white while 48 percent of its students are non-white. A community meeting on the subject was hosted by the school division and two parent groups in December. Shortly after the meeting, the School Board added money to its budget for the summer diversity training and to hire a personnel specialist to focus on the issue. The Loudoun NAACP says the school system’s latest efforts are not enough to combat the problem. The group says it plans on filing federal complaints about various “racial inequities” within the school system.

Read more in the Loudoun Times-Mirror