The name of one of the great abolitionists now finds itself in rare air: Our rather pedestrian-monikered airport has been renamed the Frederick Douglass Greater Rochester International Airport.

“For Rochester to do that once again reinforces the social justice history, the social justice recognition, that has always been here,” says Carvin Eison.

Rev. Myra Brown’s call to fight for justice

Feb 7, 2021
Max Schulte/WXXI News

Ask the Rev. Myra Brown, the pastor at Spiritus Christi Church in Rochester, where the roots of her faith first took hold, and she’ll tell you the story of the teacher, the mother, and the paddle.

Noelle E. C. Evans | WXXI News

The Rev. Lewis Stewart with the United Christian Leadership Ministries said on Wednesday that activists need to change their goals as they protest Daniel Prude's death.

Stewart spoke hours after police began dispersing protesters, who had been occupying outside of City Hall since Tuesday morning. Sixteen people were arrested. There have been daily, largely peaceful protests since news of Prude's death was made public two weeks ago. 

In March, Prude died after police restrained him during a mental health arrest. The medical examiner ruled it a homicide.

Noelle E. C. Evans | WXXI News

Protesters occupied the outside of City Hall from morning into the night on Tuesday calling for justice for Daniel Prude.

In March, Prude was having a mental health crisis when his brother called 911. Officers pinned him to the ground and he suffocated. He died a week later.

Daniel’s brother Joe Prude, who made the 911 call, says that he’s tired of waiting for the officers who arrested and restrained his brother to be arrested and fired.

The second Black Kids Matter Rally is set to take place Saturday at Harris Whalen Park. It was organized by local moms who wanted to create a family-friendly BLM event. From drum circles to story time to a short march, the organizers hope to raise awareness of the movement among Rochester's youngest citizens.

We talk to the mothers about the event and broader issues related to diversity, inclusion, and equitable education in our community. Our guests: 

  • Nicolette Ferguson, Black Kids Matter Rally organizer
  • Kristen Turgeon, Black Kids Matter Rally organizer 
  • Ahlia Kitwana, Black Kids Matter Rally organizer
  • Melody Wollgren, Black Kids Matter Rally organizer
  • W.D. Ferguson, Black Kids Matter Rally participant
  • Keegan Turgeon, Black Kids Matter Rally participant

We discuss the life and legacy of award-winning poet Lucille Clifton. Clifton was a Buffalo native whose work celebrated Black womanhood, identity, and resilience. She won the National Book Award for Poetry and was a two-time finalist for the Pulitzer Prize.

BOA Editions is publishing a new collection of her work. Our guests discuss that collection – “How to Carry Water” – and how it intersects with current events. We also discuss BOA's upcoming Dine & Rhyme event honoring Clifton. Our guests:

  • Sidney Clifton, television and film producer, and daughter of Lucille Clifton
  • Cornelius Eady, poet and co-founder of Cave Canem Foundation
  • Peter Connors, publisher for BOA Editions
  • Alison Meyers, executive director of Writers & Books

WXXI photo

 Organizers with the group Save Rochester - Black Lives Matter and Black Families Matter are holding a unity rally on Friday at Denver Street in Rochester, the same area where two people were assaulted last week.

On July 31st, two suspects engaged in a "verbal altercation" over one of the victims' sexual orientation before the assault, said the Rochester Police Department. One of the victims, 30, was taken to the hospital for injuries.

Larry Knox

Members of the 1199 SEIU health care workers union picketed outside of the Pearl Nursing Center on Portland Avenue on Monday as part of a national strike for Black lives. 

Frank Mccoullum is a union member and cook at the nursing home. He joined about 15 others at the picket, including nurses, maintenance workers, and aides, to protest local and national working conditions.