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WOMEN HEAD TO PHILADELPHIA FOR MARCH, RALLY.

Byline: Associated Press

Along the East Coast, from the South and the Midwest, women drove or boarded buses, planes or trains Friday bound for the Million Woman March.

In Philadelphia, hotels and homes filled up with people for today's march and rally, designed to strengthen bonds in the African-American community and lift women's spirits.

``I've been hearing about it all the time. It's been real exciting just to be a part of history,'' said Jackie Wright, 53, who arrived early from Okemos, Mich., near Lansing, with her grown daughter and son.

``Sisters that I have never met before are networking. I just feel great,'' said Wright, who was staying at a hotel in Mount Laurel, N.J.

The grass-roots march, organized by housing activists and small-business women Phile Chionesu and Asia Coney, is modeled after the Million Man March in Washington in 1995.

The top platform issue for the march has been support for an effort by Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Los Angeles, who is chairwoman of the Congressional Black Caucus, to start an investigation into claims the CIA was involved with drug traffickers in bringing large quantities of crack cocaine into African-American communities. Waters is scheduled to speak at today's march.

White House Press Secretary Mike McCurry said President Clinton ``applauds people who, in that spirit, gather together to celebrate both their faith and their commitment.

``But, at the same time, that doesn't mean that he necessarily subscribes to everything that every march or every event lists as part of its agenda, or everything that is said at such events.''
COPYRIGHT 1997 Daily News
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Copyright 1997, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Oct 25, 1997
Words:260
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