In 2021, Tri-State Expo Juneteenth Affairs, Inc. was formed as a non-profit organization (see attached Articles of Incorporation) in the State of Alabama. However, in 2018 Tri-State Expo was performing multiple events in the Dothan community.
The Juneteenth Parade Celebration, was conceptualized during the planning period of a blistering-cold day of January 2021. We contacted the Dothan Police Dept., to obtain and complete the application for a parade/assembly permit for the City of Dothan. Admittedly, we originally requested a route in an "economically distressed" community, but an epiphany of self- worth occurred! Even a member of the city government inquired, which further strengthen the self-worth and fueled the resolve of this applicant--"why that community, why not Main Street?" So the organization placed a new request for Main Street as the route for the inaugural Juneteenth Parade Celebration in downtown Dothan; but conflict immediately engaged with DPD for the request of that route. This applicant was instructed to get signatures from business owners along Main Street, that would be impacted by a Saturday parade processional, on a form that did not even exist--our organization had to draft the form AND get approval of the form from DPD. After months of performing an unconstitutional act (1st Amendment-- the right to assemble, et. al.--of obtaining permission from business owners, the final signature was obtained, the packet was assembled, and members of our staff submitted our collection of documents to the Chief of Police for the DPD. "You're the first organization that's EVER done this (get the signatures) before!" He bewilderedly stated. At that time, we were instructed to get a "quote" from the Traffic and Engineering Dept. regarding the usage of barricades and staffing for distributing the barricades-- a quote to use equipment that has already been paid for by state tax dollars if citizens like this applicant.
However, obediently we journeyed to the Traffic and Engineering Dept. to discuss the "quote", but the personnel member instructed us that a meeting-- with Chief of Police, City Manager, and Traffic dept--had already occurred two days prior to our arrival and a decision to deny our application was made on that date! This applicant was in complete disbelief, but NOT dissuaded; therefore, the civil injustice prompted our organization to continue to pursue Main Street (see attachment). After a two year battle with the City Manager, our legal team was able to reach a temporary compromise by which the Juneteenth Parade Celebration will utilize Foster Street-which intersects Main Street-and continue to pursue Main Street throughout the coming years.
A summary of our organization's mission involves developing progressive thinking African-American communities through an atmosphere of fellowship and family-fun
-Professionally prepared, healthy whole-food cuisines, fashion, beauty, civil justice awareness, mental health & wellness.
-COVID-19 vaccinations, in conjunction with the Southeast Public Health District, to increase the number of underserved African American citizens being vaccinated and educated.
-HIV testing and awareness, in conjunction with the Alabama Department of Public Health, for African Americans to obtain information and decrease the elevated number of infections in Houston County.
-We create win-wins for our communities by bringing discovered and undiscovered talent together!