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SCLC still making strides in Memphis

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Its most famous leader may be gone,  but the SCLC is far from being extinct.

It just wrapped up a national convention in Memphis, but you don't have to look nationally to see the work this civil rights organization has been pushing.
Rev. Dwight Montgomery has been president of the Memphis SCLC since 2004 and says they have been in the trenches in some of the city's most trying issues.

"Every since I have been President, we have worked to minimize negative gang activity, getting mentors and tutors for our public schools.  We have tried to stand up for people who have been cut from TN Care health care," says Montgomery.  "We stood up with the Kellogg workers who were locked out."

Now the Memphis SCLC is also picking up the national mantra that education is the new civil rights.

"We must work with parents, work with young people. Show them the importance of education, being trained so they will not be impoverished but be empowered," says Montgomery,

He says getting people into positive things will have a direct impact on things like crime.

"You are not gonna have young people who are being educated and trained and moving in a positive direction be in a negative gang or participate in robberies or homicides," says Montgomery.

On the 50th anniversary of Dr. King's death next year, the Memphis SCLC plans to hold a commemorative march, but more than march, they are also going to implement a parent and youth strengthening plan.

"Fifty years we have been talking about things, but now we have to do something about it. That's the legacy I want to leave," says Montgomery.

At its National Convention in Memphis last week, the SCLC also announced an upcoming Poor People's Campaign.