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'People's Inauguration' held in South Bend to promote unity

In response to our new president's inauguration, local organizers are holding their own event.

They say it was motivated by a growing divide they saw throughout the campaign.

Group leaders decided to host the "People's Inauguration: Voices for Justice and Inclusion” to promote unity.

Jamie Morgan, the Director of the Board for Pro-Choice South Bend, says there are general concerns and they hope to address those.

"I woke up with the same feeling of dread that other people did, but then I started working and I have been able to create a platform for our voice and hopefully invite other people down tonight so that they can find their own,” said Morgan.

Organizers at the Civil Rights Heritage Center say throughout the election many people felt discouraged with national politics.

But they believe progress, at the local level, is still possible.

"I think that 2017 is going to be a great year for activism and I’m excited for all the coalition building and the great work that's happening right here in South Bend,” said Executive Director LGBTQ Center, Eli Williams.

They say they're hoping people will leave the event with ways they can promote equality, embrace difference, and resist systemic oppression.

Terri Russ with SURJ South Bend says she is optimistic of the future.

"Talking about what the new era is going to be like and followed by a time where we can come together in small groups and talk and give people specific points of action they can do as we move forward,” said Russ.

The event continues through the night with a dance party at the Civil Rights Heritage Center, starting at 7.


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