Black History Month: California Voices of the Civil Rights Movement

Voices of the Civil Rights Movement, a multimedia collaboration of Comcast NBCUniversal and the Equal Justice Initiative, honors the legacy and impact of the men and women who championed racial equality in the United States.

Here are five voices from California:

Inspiration for Other Movements: Rep. Judy Chu

U.S. Rep. Judy Chu of California, Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific AmericanCaucus, discusses the impact of the civil rights movement on other movements for equality in the U.S. “The Civil Rights Movement that was started by The March on Washington had a profound impact on other movements in this country … the Women’s Movement for equality, Latino equality and … Asian American movements for equality.”

A Force to Create Change: William Lucy

William Lucy, Former President of the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists discusses the union’s role in assisting with mobilization efforts for the March, and efforts to build a coalition. He stated, “Strong labor participation, rooted in, sort of, the moral teachings of the church, and generating activism in the community, could affect legislative issues at a local level and at a national level.”

Witnessing the Movement on Television: Stephen Perry

Steve Perry discusses growing up in California during the civil rights movement, and witnessing key events of the struggle for equality on television. Perry recalls, “My first exposure to the worst parts of racism and the worst parts of the genesis, if you will, of the civil rights movement was watching the dogs and the water on TV […] It was particularly scary that this was real.”

“We’re Not In This By Ourselves:” Sonny Skyhawk

Sonny Skyhawk, Founder and Chairman of American Indians in Film and Television, discusses the civil rights movement’s significant impact on Native Americans, who shared many of the same struggles as the African-American community. He said, “We watched constantly, what was going on […] My parents and grandparents said, ‘Geez, you know, were not in this by ourselves. It’s happening to other people besides us.'”

Bern Nadette Stanis, of Good Times

Best known as portraying Thelma on the hit TV series Good Times, actress Bern Nadette Stanis discusses the groundbreaking television sitcom as well as becoming aware of discrimination as a young child.

You can view all 16+ hours of Voices content in full — and for free:

• Available to Comcast customers on Xfinity On Demand. Just say “Black History

• Available for free to the general public at CivRightsVoices.com.

Video content owned and funded by NBC Bay Area’s parent company Comcast Corporation. Courtesy: CivRightsVoices.com.

This post was originally posted at http://www.nbcbayarea.com/news/local/California-Voices-Civil-Rights-505215891.html.

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