“We should realize that the problems of racial injustice and
economic injustice cannot be solved without a radical redistribution of
political and economic power.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
The Poor People’s Campaign was a 1968 effort to gain economic
justice for poor people in the United States. It was organized by Martin
Luther King, Jr., and was the last campaign he was working on before he
was assassinated in April 1968. King shifted his focus to these issues after observing
that gains in civil rights had not improved the material conditions of
life for many African Americans.
The Poor People’s Campaign was a multiracial effort—including
African-Americans, Asian-Americans, Mexican-Americans, Puerto Ricans,
Appalachian White people, and Native Americans—aimed at alleviating
poverty regardless of race. Just as King began his multiracial campaign for economic justice he was murdered.