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Marchers in Riverton walk for equality on holiday

Marchers in Riverton walk for equality on state, federal holiday

Jan 22, 2013 - By Alejandra Silva, Staff Writer

In 1990, the Wyoming Legislature designated Martin Luther King Jr. Day also as Wyoming Equality Day. Celebrated on the third Monday of January, this legal holiday is aimed at celebrating diversity, civil rights and equality.

In celebration, Fremont County residents organized an "equality march" Monday.

Founder Micah Lott of Rez Action, the group that sponsored the march, said he hoped the march emphasized the diversity in Wyoming and the struggles that are still encountered by American Indians.

Lott addressed the locals who gathered to march and stressed the importance of making changes in their community.

"We have to fight today for a better tomorrow," Lott said. "I have devoted my life to social change."

He added that his group is currently working towards providing information to tribe members and addressing the issue of some businesses not accepting tribal ID's as a form of identification. When he was 15, he founded Rez Vote that was aimed at getting enrolled tribe members out to vote.

A speaker for the march was Central Wyoming College diversity coordinator and arts and sciences instructor for Sergio A. Maldonado Sr. who said it was important to "embrace equality" and "celebrate diversity."

"The realities of today's world, whether it's Wyoming or the United States, is that we still have some serious disparities," Maldonado said. "It's about peaceful co-existence... It's about peaceful interactions."

Maldonado thanked all the attendees, most being high school students for their attendance and dedication even though it was their day off of school for Martin Luther King Jr. day.

"I've always maintained that the facilitator tool is education," he said. "It provides with a panoramic take on life from which you can make individual choices."

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