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Dr. Kenneth Alexander, University Medical School, is special guest at Rainbow PUSH Coalition

May 2, 2009

During the live broadcast of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition's Saturday Morning Forum and at a press conference following the forum, Dr. Kenneth Alexander, Associate Professor and Chief, Infectious Diseases, Department of Pediatrics, University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, shared with the audience ways to prevent the spread of swine flu.

Doctor Alexander explained that despite the global spread of swine flu, it does not appear to be more severe than the usual strains of influenza virus. On average, 30,000 people die each year due to seasonal flu, but these are usually the elderly and severely ill.

Dr. Alexander urged a coomon sense approach to prevention. "It is perfectly fine to attend church tomorrow, or to go to movie theater or anywhere else where large groups of people are present," he said, suggesting the following common sense steps to protetct yourself, and others, against the virus:

Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after use

Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.

Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

Stay home if you get sick. The Centers for Disease Control recommend that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.

During the broadcast, Rev. Jesse L. Jackson Sr., founder and president of the Rainbow PUSH Coalition, highlighted the importance of Law Day, observed on May 1, by speaking about the significance of Section Five of the Voting Rights Act.

"There has never been more consistent popular support for equal access to the ballot," said Rev. Jackson. "Section Five is the key for political enfranchisement for all Americans."

On April 29th the U.S. Supreme Court reviewed the validity of this critical aspect of the Voting Rights Act.

Law Day is meant to reflect on the role of law in the foundation of the country and to recognize its importance for society.

Rev. Jackson will travel to Detroit, MI on Sunday for the NAACP's 54th annual Fight for Freedom Fund Dinner. As Chrysler plants are shutting down, Rev. Jackson continues to advocate for U.S car manufacturers.

Closing the broadcast, Rev. Jackson congratulated Dr. Wayne Watson for his recent appointment to the presidency of Chicago State University and continued to urge viewers to pray for Roxana Sarberi, the American journalist currently imprisoned in Iran.

The Rainbow PUSH Coalition is a progressive organization devoted to protecting, defending and expanding civil rights to improve economic and educational opportunity. The organization is headquartered at 930 E. 50th St. in Chicago. To learn more, please visit www.rainbowpush.org or call (773) 373-3366. To arrange an interview with Rev. Jackson, please call the numbers listed above.

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