Facing South was one of the first media outlets to cover the case of the Jena 6 -- black youths in rural Louisiana who are facing up to 22 years in prison (thanks to an all-white jury) after getting in a schoolyard fight with white students.

This week, ColorOfChange gives us an update on the status of the case and their national campaign:


Last Tuesday, over 300 people from across the country descended on Jena: we rallied in front of the courthouse, marched through downtown Jena, and cut through a line of sheriffs to hand-deliver petitions from more than 43,000 ColorOfChange.org members to the District Attorney's office.

It was quite a moment. The families were beaming because they knew that we had their backs. And, from the looks on their faces, it was clear that the authorities hadn't anticipated such a growing and powerful force. We've also gotten the attention of Governor Blanco, who finally started sending responses to the over 50,000 emails ColorOfChange.org members sent to her office. And, together, we've raised more than $55,000 for the legal defense of the Jena 6.

But the youths haven't received justice yet. To lend your voice to the campaign, visit here. For more background on the case, listen to NPR's story or read this account from the BBC.

PHOTO: Jesse Rae Beard is one of the "Jena 6." Photo courtesy of New York University