Two years ago the neighborhood of Sherman Park was threw into a frenzy, after Sylville Smith was murdered by then office Dominique Heagans Brown. Sparking outrage, riots and unfortunate fires, residents displayed their disgust for the injustice. Desperate to see change, one resident took it a step further.
UBLAC was formed by Markasa Tucker, and other powerful black women as a resource for the African American community. Standing for, “Uplifting Black Liberation and Community” she and other African American women work tirelessly to equip the black community with resources and educational opportunities.
The march took place Saturday morning, on the 29thof September. In conjunction with the empowerment march in DC, marching against issues such as, poverty, affordable housing, the renewal of the Violence against Woman Act, and Trump’s restriction of the word diversity and entitlement.
It was fitting the march took place from start to finish at the newly named Vel Phillips Street on north 4thstreet starting at Pete’s fruit market.
Taking place in the 6thdistrict that was once represented by Phillips, alderwoman Coggs spoke of its significance.
“The place behind us is a full service grocery store selling fruits and vegetables that would not be here if it was not for people who fought for what they wanted in their neighborhood.”
Coggs continued saying, “it was a group of black women who organized and got this changed from a dollar tree, to a full blown grocery store.”
Explaining the weight of the importance of marching down 4thstreet, Coggs talked of why the late Vel Phillips fought to have the street named after her. “It was adjacent to her dear friend of the civil right movement MLK; she was married to her husband Dale Phillips at St Marks church on 4thstreet.”
Congress Woman Gwen Moore echoed those sentiments saying, “She was black lives matter, when she could not put her face on literature”
Moore also said, “We are going to walk in the memory of the giant who was 84 pounds and quiet.”
A giant she was true to that, knocking down barrier after barrier in her 95 years of existence. The march took place at approximately 10:10am and lasting till 2pm. Residents marched, danced and laughed all down the street that was paved by Vel, and many black woman like her.