During a recent workshop, members of the Hollywood Commission made a tentative decision to rename Lee Street to Liberty Street; Forrest Street to Freedom Street and Hood Street to Hope Street.
This follows a long period of controversy over street signs named after Confederate leaders. The next step for the commission is to have a resolution proposing these names for the streets. Hollywood city staff is working through the details of this resolution and it will be placed on an upcoming agenda.
Not everyone was satisfied with the decision. According to Wendy King, Take Down Slavery Symbols of Hollywood and the Black Lives Matter Alliance Broward are disappointed in the results of the meeting, known as the Street Renaming Workshop took place.
They wanted the streets named after people who have campaigned for African-American equality. Some of the names members of the organization wanted included Eula Street to honor Eula Johnson, who helped de-segregate Broward County beaches and Bethune Street after Mary McLeod Bethune, a pioneer in education. Other names suggested included Sojourner Truth and Harriet Tubman.
The name changes represent years of effort by Hollywood resident Benjamin Israel. He has worked tirelessly for the change often alone. Eventually he gained support from others in the community and finally gained the support of Broward County political leaders.