The Latest: Empowerment center opens in Ferguson

The Latest on the opening of a community empowerment center in Ferguson nearly three years after the police shooting death of Michael Brown (all times local):

11:50 a.m.

The National Urban League's president is calling the opening of the Ferguson Community Empowerment Center a "powerful first step" in rebuilding the community torn apart by Michael Brown's death.

Marc Miriam spoke Wednesday at the opening of the $3 million center. It will include job training and placement, offices for the Salvation Army and other services.

The center was built on the site where a QuikTrip burned in August 2014, the night after Brown, an unarmed black 18-year-old, was fatally shot by white officer Darren Wilson.

Wilson was cleared of wrongdoing, but the shooting led to scrutiny that revealed racial bias in Ferguson's criminal justice system.


12:30 a.m.

The president of the National Urban League says he's seen "steps in the right direction" in Ferguson, Missouri, in the three years since Michael Brown's death, and he's hopeful the new Ferguson Community Empowerment Center will help even more.

The $3 million center was built on property where a QuikTrip convenience store was burned during rioting after the 18-year-old Brown, who was black and unarmed, was killed by a white police officer on Aug. 9, 2014. The center that will house a job training and placement service opens Wednesday — the same day the Urban League starts its national conference in St. Louis.

National Urban League President Michael Morial says the events in Ferguson after Brown's death highlighted challenges many communities face, including poverty and disparities in education and health.