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Feb 14, 8:12 PM EST

Jesse Jackson joins faith leaders at Memphis conference

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AP Photo/Mark Humphrey

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- The Rev. Jesse Jackson has joined clergy and faith leaders at a conference honoring the 50th anniversary of the sanitation workers strike that brought civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. to Memphis.

The Samuel DeWitt Proctor Conference started Monday and runs through Thursday in Memphis, where King was killed while supporting workers seeking safer working conditions and better pay.

About 1,300 black sanitation workers went on strike after two colleagues were killed on the job in February 1968. King was shot on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel on April 4, 1968. The motel is now the National Civil Rights Museum.

Iva E. Carruthers, the conference's general secretary, said the workers had "the same kind of courage that we need to move forward in this historic moment in time."

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