DC COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS HOLD FORUM ON BUILDING UNITY BETWEEN BLACK AND BROWN COMMUNITIES

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:rnMarch 25, 2009rnrnContact:rnAlbert Honegan: 202-739-1357 (DC Language Access Coalition)rnRuth Castel-Branco: 202-489-2273 (DC Jobs with Justice) rnrnDC COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS HOLD FORUM ON BUILDING UNITY BETWEEN BLACK AND BROWN COMMUNITIESrnrnWHAT: All-Day community forum on building alliances between African-American and immigrant communities in the District.rnWHEN: Saturday March 28, 2009. 9:30am-4:00pm. rnWHERE: Foundry Methodist Church, 1500 16th St NW.rnWHO: Casa de Maryland, DC Jobs with Justice, Fair Budget Coalition, Latino Economic Development Corporation, National Day Laborer Organizing Project, STITCH .rnrnWASHINGTON, DC– “As D.C.’s demographics change and resources for working people contract, we see bosses, landlords and even policy makers using divide and conquer tactics to pit new immigrants against native born workers,” said Ramon Zepeda of DC Jobs With Justice. “Language, ethnicity and nationality have become tools of division, to the benefit of employers.”rnrn“The current economic crisis only exacerbates matters,” said Kristi Matthews of the Fair Budget Coalition and Legal Clinic for the Homeless. “As public services contract and housing programs are shut down, working people are scrambling for an even smaller piece of the pie.”rnrn“This all day training seeks to create a safe forum for workers and tenants to come together, express their feelings, analyze the divisions between communities, and share strategies for finding common ground between Black and Brown communities,” adds Daniel del Pielago, tenant organizer with the Latino Economic Development Corporation.rnrn“The focus is for us to start uniting our communities, despite ethnic and linguistic differences, around daily struggles that all working class folks face in DC,” states Jennifer Deng-Pickett, director of the DC Language Access Coalition. “We need to start working together to develop community strategies that increase our collective voice and power and this is one way to begin the dialogue.”rnrn###rn

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