Illinois leaders mark Civil Rights Act anniversary - New York News

Illinois leaders mark Civil Rights Act anniversary

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CHICAGO (Associated Press) - Illinois' religious leaders and public officials are commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act.

The Rev. Jesse Jackson marked the signing of it Wednesday during his Rainbow/PUSH Coalition's conference.

Secretary of State Jesse White has circulated a letter to Illinois newspapers about his experiences as a student in Alabama in the 1950s. He says he felt inequalities that prompted the civil rights movement.

Gov. Pat Quinn signed legislation at a historic black church in Chicago extending the role of the Illinois African American Family Commission. The group formed in 2004 to develop and evaluate policies for African American families.

President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act into law on July 2, 1964. It helped end legal discrimination based on race, sex, color, religion and national origin.

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