Press Release ● Human and Civil Rights
For Immediate Release: 
August 28, 2013
Contact Info: 

Stephanie Young, 202-225-3130

WASHINGTON, DC - House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, which was held on August 28, 1963:

“Fifty years ago today, hundreds of thousands of Americans from all walks of life assembled on the National Mall to call for jobs, freedom, and full equality for all the people of our land.  In the shadow of a memorial to the man who fought to abolish the scourge of slavery, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rep. John Lewis, and other distinguished civil rights leaders called for an end to slavery’s bitter remnants in the form of Jim Crow.  Dr. King’s dream – born from the unrealized dream of our Founders and brought to life by the toil, suffering, and determination of millions through the Civil Rights Movement – inspired the reforms of the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, and changes throughout our society that have made our union more perfect.

“But the perfecting of our union continues as a work far from complete.  As we mark this anniversary, let us be resolved once more to raise our voices together for jobs, freedom, equality, opportunity, and justice for all.  With the Supreme Court’s recent decision to strike down a key section of the Voting Rights Act, we have much work ahead to restore the promise of our democracy to every eligible voter.  When millions remain out of work or facing discrimination in employment, when children still struggle to close the achievement gap in our schools, and when many feel that our justice system remains unfairly stacked against them, we must remember the events of August 28, 1963, as a call to action in our own day. 

“As Dr. King said from the Lincoln Memorial’s steps, ‘We will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.’  Inspired by those who stood up for jobs and freedom, let us continue their march forward as we seek a better future for all Americans and the fulfillment of our common dream that every child born in this country ought to have the chance to succeed.”