Candidates will speak to NAACP
Boston — Three presidential hopefuls are addressing the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) during its 71st national convention in Miami Beach this week.
"And we are still negotiating with the fourth major candidate," reported Paul Brock, spokesman for the association.
The candidates will not appear on the same program. President Carter will speak at the closing program, the Freedom Fund banquet, at 8 p.m. Friday, July 4 .
Sen. Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts, challenging the President for the Democratic Party nomination, will be the luncheon speaker at 1 p.m. Wednesday, July 2.
Rep. John B. Anderson of Illinois, independent candidate for president, will address the plenary session at 8 p.m. Tuesday, July 1.
At this writing the NAACP was negotiating with representatives of Ronald Reagan, the expected Republican nominee, to take the platform Monday, June 30. "A few details are yet to be worked out," Mr. Brock had said.
In addition to the presidential candidates, members of the 1967-68 National Advisory Commission on Civil Disorder (the Kerner Commission) will reconvene at the NAACP convention. They will conduct a workshop; tour the Liberty City area of Miami, one area hit hard by the recent riots; and reassess race relations in the United States in a report to delegates.
Benjamin L. Hooks, executive director, in his opening remarks today (June 30) , is expected to announce plans for an NAACP national study of police brutality in the United States. He also will discuss a special long-range program to rebuild the Miami riot area, and report on association priorities for the 1980s.
"The NAACP will not endorse any candidate for president or any political party's platform or slate," Mr. Hooks said. "We are nonpartisan although we do take stands on public issues. We are bringing in the candidates so that our members may see and hear them in person and make up their own minds on how to vote. And, of course, we are conducting our register-and-vote campaign."
In addition to the public programs, the convention will include a series of workshops on civil rights concerns such as housing, crime, justice, the news media, black business, and unemployment. Delegates will also pass a series of resolutions.
Although the NAACP voted four years ago to meet in Miami, some members opposed holding the meeting there after the May 17-19 racial riots in that city. Mr. Hooks, however, told dissenters, "This is the right time for the NAACP to hold a convention in the troubled City of Miami."