Food Justice and the Civil Rights Movement, 1/18

Food Justice and the Civil Rights Movement

January 18 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day), 6:30-8:15pm

During the Civil Rights Movement, Martin Luther King Jr. worked with a huge coalition of leaders on a broad range of issues, including: voting rights, housing, and segregation. Their dreams of equality and justice for all people ties directly to the food crisis that impacts low income communities and people of color today.

Displacement and racism affects food justice in various ways, including “redlining” by banks and retail outlets, the outmigration of jobs, and food deserts. This lack of access to healthy food appears to be tied into the overall health of our nation as well—a 2010 report by the White House Task Force on Childhood Obesity found that children are on track to have a shorter lifespan than their parents for the first time in 200 years. Access to affordable, healthy food is central to our public health crisis, and this issue is clearly exacerbated by racism and class discrimination.

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Know Your City and People’s Food Co-op are hosting a community dialogue with speakers who organize for food justice and racial justice in our local community. Topics include gentrification, displacement, culturally responsive food gardens, and equity in local food policy.

Speakers include:

  • Katrina Holland, Deputy Director, Community Alliance of Tenants
  • Edward Hill, Executive Director, Groundwork Portland
  •  Shannon Cogan, Community Engagement Manager, Sisters of the Road
  • Shantae Johnson, Nutrition Policy Specialist, Multnomah County Health Department
  • Nick Sauvie, Executive Director, Rose CDC

Suggested donation for attending is $10. Donations will go towards Know Your City and Groundwork Portland. People's will donate 5% of all sales on this day towards these organizations.


Since 1970, People's has committed to fight against racism and discrimination through our democratic work place where all voices are heard, staff-led Social Justice and Equity working group, and buying guidelines that prioritize products produced and distributed ethically, sustainability and in line with our values.