'We Can't Ever Give Up:' Activist Sala Udin On Politics, Perseverance & The Fight For Social Justice

Sala Udin has been a political activist for more than 50 years. He marched on Washington, was a freedom rider and eventually took up a career in politics, serving first as a city councilman and today as a Pittsburgh Public Schools board member. 

Sala Udin served in City Council for nearly a decade before joining the Pittsburgh Public Schools board in 2017.
Credit Courtesy of Sala Udin

Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who would've turned 90 today, inspired Udin to travel to the segregated South where he saw firsthand the gross injustice of Jim Crow. These days, he says his inspiration comes from students at Pittsburgh Public Schools. 

“The students surprise me every day with their leadership, with their brilliance, [and] with their integrity,” he said.

He urges young activists to persevere.

“We’ve got to keep up the struggle, keep up the fight. We’ve got to insist on full and equal citizenship, and participation and rights, and we can’t ever give up.” 

Later in the program, one of the longest disc golf courses in the world is opening this spring in Cranberry Township. 90.5 WESA's Amy Sisk reports that the number of disc golf courses has tripled in the last decade as more people take up the sport. 

And Allegheny County is home to more than 100 police departments, all with different levels of funding and strategies for training. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reporters Shelly Bradbury, Chris Huffaker, and Ashley Murray explore policing inequity and potential solutions in a multi-part package, "Patchwork Policing." 

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s daily news program. Tune in weekdays at 9 a.m. to hear newsmakers and innovators join veteran journalist Kevin Gavin, taking an in-depth look at stories important to the Pittsburgh region. Find more episodes of The Confluence here or wherever you get your podcasts.