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Speakers Encourage Year-Round Activism At MLK Celebration

During Bloomington’s Martin Luther King Jr. Birthday Celebration at the Buskirk-Chumley theater Monday night, local and national leaders said it takes more than just a day of service to spark change in communities.

Thousands of Bloomington residents spent the holiday volunteering. Many helped with projects aimed at improving access to healthcare and housing in the city.

"These are great days like this to help try to inspire us," said Mayor John Hamilton. "This community is full of people and institutions that so work hard year round to make it a better community. But we all have work to do."

Keynote speaker and member of the Ferguson Commission Brittany Packnett said what happens every other day of the year is even more important.

She says protesting on the streets of Ferguson after the death of Michael Brown helped awaken her to inequalities in her own community.

"Whatever that moment is for you that shook you out of your dry place to realize that all is not right with the world, all is not even right with your own street, well let that moment help you start small," Packnett said.

Packnett said in order to tackle issues of inequality it’s important for people to listen to those who are most affected by injustice.

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