About 100 people braved the bitter cold for the Monday, January 21 Martin Luther King, Jr. Unity March and Luncheon in downtown Saginaw.

The annual event is hosted by the Iota Chi Lambda chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity and the Delta College Black Faculty and Staff. Attendees began around 10:00 a.m. at Franklin Street and Hayden Streets for the march and ended at the Dow Event Center. The luncheon started at 11:00 with Pamela Pugh of the state Board of Education as the keynote speaker.

One of the march coordinators from the fraternity Eddie Foxx says despite decades of work, there are barriers to many aspects of life people still deal with, citing education, housing, and infrastructure. He says it’s important to keep looking and moving forward as Dr. King did, fighting to remove barriers to equity and justice.

(photo by Michael Percha)

Saginaw Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Ramont Roberts sees education as the most important tool to have in continuing King’s work.

“Education has always been the great equalizer, and for me, making sure we fight for equal funding for our kids, for school systems like ours, so they’re able to have the very best and highest quality education that they can, enabling them to be successful in this economy.”

Saginaw City Councilwoman Jamie Forbes says it’s important to be thoughtful about Dr. King’s teachings all the time, but as a nation with our current divided political culture, people will be unable to move forward until they can recommit to those values.