EUGENE, Ore. — Hundreds of people honored Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by marching through the streets of Eugene on Monday.
The two-mile march led activists down Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard from The Science Factory to The Shedd Institute.
And while Dr. King’s activism is remembered today, local community leaders say there’s still more that needs to be done on the road to equality.
“Dr. King understood when movements stand together united like we’re doing today, real change can happen,” said Michael Carrigan of CALC.
“Believe it or not 2014, we are up against a backlash against the Civil Rights era, against all the movement that we grew up thinking that was with us for life,” said Eric Richardson.
Supporters say instead of taking steps forward in the Civil Rights Movement, the community is fighting an uphill battle for marriage equality, voting rights, immigration and poverty.
“Personally, I believe nobody should be told it’s illegal to marry the person that they love. Freedom means freedom for everyone. I believe in treating others as one would hope to be treated, and that includes allowing gay and lesbian couples to have the freedom to marry,” said Colin Crader, Oregon United for Marriage.
“Together we can restore the right for all citizens to vote freely and fairly in this country,” said Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Oregon).
“He would be fighting against private prisons serving as immigration detainment camps where corporations profit and inevitably deport the parents or citizens and children turning their lives into years of turmoil,” said Phil Carrasco.
“Many of our children are in poverty. Too many families homeless and without the most common of resources, and with still we cut the very social service network that is there to protect them,” said Kitty Piercy, Eugene Mayor.
So by joining together, they’re hopeful power by numbers will help create equality. The march ended at The Shedd Institute where community members listened to speeches and gospel choir performances.