IF YOU GO
What: The Rev. Jesse Jackson will discuss economic issues in the community.
Where: Olivet Baptist Church, 740 M.L. King Blvd.
When: 6 p.m. Thursday, doors open; 7 p.m. speech begins
How much: Free
Information: To RSVP a clergyman or organization for the dinner, call 423-266-8709, ext. 221.
For the second time in a year, the Rev. Jesse Jackson will visit Chattanooga as he attempts to use his influence for a greater number of minority hires.
"A lot of people are hurting economically in this community," said the Rev. Kevin Adams, pastor at Olivet Baptist Church. "We're going to rally and come up with strategies to address that."
After a meeting with local clergy and community leaders, Mr. Jackson is expected to focus on "minority concerns in this economy" during a speech at Olivet Baptist Church on Thursday at 7 p.m., according to a news release from the church.
The public is invited to the free event.
Mr. Adams said he spoke with Mr. Jackson on Monday and the veteran civil rights leader said he plans to offer strategies to fight foreclosures and navigate the student loan process.
The number of property foreclosures in Hamilton County has nearly tripled in the past decade as the county's unemployment rate edged up this year to 10 percent and stayed near that level this spring.
"I'm afraid we will end up with more foreclosures in 2010," said Ted Fellman, executive director of the Tennessee Housing Development Agency.
This week's visit by Mr. Jackson comes just 10 months after the civil rights leader spoke last June at Olivet Baptist Church after his appeal to officials at the new Volkswagen plant to increase minority employment.
"This time, it's us trying to push people and encourage them to get the education and the skill training to benefit from opportunities in this city," Mr. Adams said.