- The Washington Times - Monday, July 27, 2015

Hillary Rodham Clinton’s black outreach director reportedly attended the Movement for Black Lives conference in Cleveland over the weekend, in the campaign’s first known outreach to the “Black Lives Matter” movement.

A Clinton campaign official on Saturday confirmed to BuzzFeed News that the campaign’s LaDavia Drane “had one-on-one meetings and group listening sessions to engage stakeholders including ministers, community organizers, elected officials, and other individuals in Cleveland for the Movement for Black Lives.”

An official said Ms. Drane listened to a range of suggestions related to Mrs. Clinton’s outreach, as well as policy recommendations, BuzzFeed reported.

“We will continue to engage a wide array of stakeholders, including members of the black lives matter movement, when crafting policy on important issues like reforming our criminal justice system,” the official said.

A source with knowledge of the communication said the Clinton campaign reached out to several people thought to be connected to principal activists in the movement, although some of the event’s organizers complained that they did not get to meet Ms. Drane.

“Hillary Clinton is committed to developing real policy solutions that are informed by having listened to ideas and concerns from a wide range of voices, which is why we felt it was important to hear from those gathered in Cleveland this weekend for the Movement for Black Lives Convening,” Clinton spokesperson Karen Finney told BuzzFeed in an email.

“Throughout this campaign, Hillary Clinton will continue to work with a wide array of stakeholders, including members of the Black Lives Matter movement,” she continued. “Both Hillary and the campaign know that in order to implement real change, we need to work together in crafting policy, raising awareness, and building a coalition to ensure every American knows what it means to be secure, safe and free.”

• Jessica Chasmar can be reached at jchasmar@washingtontimes.com.

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