Join Town at Belmont’s Annual MLK Breakfast Celebration Jan. 15

Photo: MLK Jr.

The Belmont Human Rights Commission of Belmont and Belmont Against Racism (BAR) will host the 24th annual Martin Luther King, Jr., Breakfast Jan 15 at Belmont High School. This year’s speaker is State Rep. Byron Rushing, who since entering the Massachusetts legislature in 1982, has been a tireless advocate for human and civil rights.

The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Belmont High School Cafeteria, 221 Concord Ave. A continental breakfast will include pastries, fruit, and beverages.

Parking is free and the site is wheelchair accessible. Tickets may be purchased at the door or at Eventbrite or Tickets are $5 for individuals and $10 for families. There will be activities in the gym for children ages 5 to 10 and daycare will be provided for preschoolers.

All proceeds and donations will be given to the METCO fund which is used for late transportation for METCO high school students who participate in after-school activities at Belmont High School and across all Belmont schools for programs that bring our Boston and Belmont students together.

All are welcome and music will be provided by the Belmont High School Chorale Singers.

In the 1960’s, Rushing was involved in the civil rights movement and worked for the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), and was also a community organizer in Boston. From 1972 to 1985, he was president of the Museum of African American History in Boston, where he had an instrumental role in establishing the Boston African American National Historic Site. This became part of the National Park Service.

His many priorities and accomplishments include sponsoring legislation for ending homelessness; sponsoring the law for over-the-counter sale of sterile needles; and the law for establishing guidelines for hospitals in treating victims of violence.

From healthcare to housing to anti-discrimination legislation on all fronts, Rushing is a vocal leader. Not only did he sponsor the gay rights bill and the law to end discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in public schools, he also is a champion for size acceptance and anti-discrimination on the basis of height and weight. A spokesman against the re-establishment of the death penalty in Massachusetts, Rushing is active in the Episcopal Church, where he was elected lay deputy to its General Convention.