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The Dream Defenders launches #SquaDD2016

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

The Florida-based activist group Dream Defenders is debuting a “presidential cabinet,” dubbed #SquaDD2016, with the goal of “speaking truth to power by elevating the voices of young Black and Brown people.”

According to the organization, “We organized #SquaDD2016 with the intention of conveying the message that we demand more from the Presidential Candidates, particularly those who benefit most from and claim to represent the voices of Black and Brown youth and communities, Hillary and Bernie. #SquaDD2016 used political theater as a means to educate folks about the power of our vote through providing political education about where each of the candidates stand on issues facing our communities through their platforms and past actions.”

The Cabinet is made up of members from around Florida and will focus on a range of issues, such as education, the economy, trade, foreign policy, immigration, and mass incarceration.

Meanwhile, some members of the group were reportedly blocked from entering a Donald Trump rally in Palm Beach on Sunday.

In addition to her work writing for Florida Politics, Melissa Ross also hosts and produces WJCT’s First Coast Connect, the Jacksonville NPR/PBS station’s flagship local call-in public affairs radio program. The show has won four national awards from Public Radio News Directors Inc. (PRNDI). First Coast Connect was also recognized in 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2014 as Best Local Radio Show by Folio Weekly’s “Best Of Jax” Readers Poll and Melissa has also been recognized as Folio Weekly’s Best Local Radio Personality. As executive producer of The 904: Shadow on the Sunshine State, Melissa and WJCT received an Emmy in the “Documentary” category at the 2011 Suncoast Emmy Awards. The 904 examined Jacksonville’s status as Florida’s murder capital. During her years in broadcast television, Melissa picked up three additional Emmys for news and feature reporting. Melissa came to WJCT in 2009 with 20 years of experience in broadcasting, including stints in Cincinnati, Chicago, Orlando and Jacksonville. Married with two children, Melissa is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism/Communications. She can be reached at m.ross66211@gmail.com.

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