There will be two community forums in Oak Ridge this week that will be led by the outreach director of an organization that is dedicated to fighting hate and bigotry and to seeking justice for the most vulnerable members of society, a press release said.
The forums will feature speaker Lecia Brooks, outreach director for the Southern Poverty Law Center. They are scheduled at 2 p.m. Monday, May 7, at the Grove Theater at 123 Randolph Road and 10 a.m., Tuesday, May 8, in the sanctuary of the Oak Ridge Unitarian Universalist Church at 809 Oak Ridge Turnpike.
The forums are free and open to the public. They are hosted by Women’s Interfaith Dialogue of Oak Ridge.
Brooks leads the Southern Poverty Law Center’s outreach efforts on key initiatives and social justice issues, the press release said. She frequently gives presentations around the country to promote tolerance and diversity, the release said. She also serves as director of the Civil Rights Memorial Center in Montgomery, Alabama, an interpretive center designed to provide its visitors with a deeper understanding of the civil rights movement.
Following her presentations on Monday and Tuesday, Brooks will be joined by a panel of local citizens who will discuss issues affecting the community and efforts that seek to address those issues in a positive way, the press release said.
It said Women’s Interfaith Dialogue of Oak Ridge is hosting Brooks in appreciation of the SPLC’s work across the country and within Tennessee.
“The SPLC was quick to respond earlier this spring when nearly 100 immigrant workers were swept up at a meat-packing plant in Bean Station, Tennessee,” the press release said. “Working alongside the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition in gathering information and providing support to the families of the detained, the Law Center is currently working to provide free legal representation to the detainees who have since been moved to out-of-state ICE (U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) detention centers to face deportation proceedings.”
The press release said the SPLC uses litigation, education, and other forms of advocacy to work “toward the day when the ideals of equal justice and equal opportunity will be a reality.”
Brooks joined the SPLC staff in 2004 as director of Mix It Up at Lunch Day, a Teaching Tolerance program designed to help break down racial, cultural, and social barriers in schools, the press release said.
It said Women’s Interfaith Dialogue strives to build a welcoming and inclusive community by breaking down racial, cultural, and social barriers in the community. All are welcome, the release said.
More information will be added as it becomes available.
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