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Northam cancels appearance at Virginia Union University; invites students to the Executive Mansion

Published: Feb. 20, 2019 at 5:48 PM EST
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Governor Ralph Northam announced Wednesday that he will not attend Virginia Union University for an event honoring the Richmond 34.

The Richmond 34 refers to a group of Virginia Union University students who participated in a nonviolent sit-in at the lunch counter of Thalhimers department store in downtown Richmond, Virginia.

Northam said in a statement:

"I appreciate the original invitation of VUU's administration, but I will abide by the students' wishes. I accept the Student Government Association's invitation for future dialogue and honest conversation on issues of race, reconciliation, and equity.

Northam tweeted "In lieu of my attendance, I will host the Richmond 34 at the Executive Mansion on Friday to honor their bravery and courage."