National Urban League President and CEO Marc H. Morial today announced that the League’s anticipated 2020 Conference, slated for August in Houston, will not take place due to the current international health crisis.
“Due to the overwhelmingly devastating effect of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the National Urban League has made the decision not to host a live event in Houston, Texas this year for our 2020 Conference,” Morial said. “This has been an extraordinarily difficult decision, demanded by an extraordinary set of circumstances.”
“Even though a live event will not take place this year, the spirit of the Conference and our commitment to meeting the challenges facing Black America remain at the forefront of the Urban League Movement’s efforts as we continue to lead the nation in confronting the health and economic crises of the pandemic.”
Morial extended his thanks to Judson Robinson III, President and CEO of the Houston Area Urban League and Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, for their support and partnership.
“The leadership and gusto of Judson and Mayor Turner were largely responsible for our decision to take the Conference to Houston,” Morial said. “Their expertise and professionalism were invaluable during our preparations.”
Morial said the Conference would return to Houston in the near future.
“While we are disappointed that the National Urban League Conference is not coming to Houston due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are supportive of the decision,” Robinson said. “We remain committed to our community and health and well-being of the people in our community. We look forward to hosting the conference in the near future and when it comes back to Houston, it will be the biggest and best ever.”
In the coming months, NUL will host The Urban League Fights For You: Virtual Event Series, consisting of community-based virtual summits and town halls, Facebook and IG Lives, and career recruitment events. These engagements will gather the nation’s thought leaders and experts, along with guest political commentators, entertainment and sports figures, for informative and action-oriented conversations. The goal of the series is to provide communities of color with an authoritative source for the latest, most accurate information on COVID-19 recovery efforts.
Since the pandemic escalated in March, Urban League affiliates across the nation have served as their communities’ economic first responders, distributing food and supplies, connecting job-seekers with emergency employment, facilitating applications for unemployment insurance and small business loans and coordinating virus testing. The National Urban League and its affiliates have advocated for vulnerable communities and Black-owned small business at the state and national level, securing funding commitments and legal protections.