Orlando celebrates Civil Rights Act

Mayor Buddy Dyer speaks at event

ORLANDO, Fla. - The city of Orlando held an event at City Hall on Monday celebrating the 50th anniversary of the passage of the Civil Rights Act.

The Civil Rights Act was a key piece of legislation signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1964 that outlawed discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender and religion.  The official 50th anniversary is Wednesday.

"I hereby do proclaim Wednesday, July 2, 2014, the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act in Orlando," Mayor Buddy Dyer said.

Along with a statue of Martin Luther King Jr., an exhibit called "Embracing the Dream" details the civil rights history in Central Florida.

It's all part of the city's message to not only celebrate, but also educate people about the fight for equality.

Former state Rep. Alzo Reddick was the keynote speaker.

"It's time for all of us to get on board.  Today is not just a celebration for 50 years.  I want to see us continue this for the next 250 years," Reddick said.

Dyer called Orlando the melting pot of America and said the city is working hard to achieve more equality in the city.

"If we're going to be a city that's successful, we have to promote equality and fairness, we have to embrace diversity," Dyer said.

The "Embracing the Dream" exhibit will be at City Hall until the end of July.

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