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Archive for October 27th, 2010

Eleanor Foundation Unveils Troubling Statistics on Single Working Women’s Challenges

Posted by Admin On October - 27 - 2010 ADD COMMENTS

Women-led households increasing, especially in the suburbs

 

Lower-income single mothers better educated, working harder—but falling farther behind

 

Chicago, IL – Chicago regional household growth has been dominated by women-led households increasing at more than double the rate of households generally since 2000—and has been occurring almost entirely in the suburbs. This growth, particularly explosive among Latina-led households, has not brought greater prosperity to these households. Many of these

women struggle to make ends meet despite working harder and being better educated than ever before, according to Changing Conditions in a Changing World, a new research report released today (October 27, 2010) by the Eleanor Foundation in Chicago. The research was conducted by Malcolm Bush,

Ph.D., at Chapin Hall, a policy research center at the University of Chicago.

 

According to the report, female-headed households grew by 9.77 percent between 2000 and 2008, in contrast to the substantially smaller 4 percent increase in all households in the region. Most significant, the number of households headed by single working mothers earning between $10,000 and $50,000—lower-income according to government definitions—grew 18.5 percent

between 2000 and 2008, with significant increases in outlying metropolitan areas. As a result, a third of a million, or 332,628, such households now reside in the Chicago region.

 

“These findings mirror national trends and shatter the assumption that the economic independence of low-income, single working mothers is an ‘inner-city’ issue,” said Rosanna A. Márquez, president of Eleanor Foundation, the former regional administrator of the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Dept. and a former member of Mayor Richard M. Daley’s cabinet. “Our report makes clear that building the region’s capacity to offer an array of sustainable, accessible

resources to help single mother-led households and other families threatened by poverty is essential to the continued economic health of communities throughout metropolitan Chicago.”

 

According to the report, housing cost increases have driven much of single working mothers’

economic distress despite many working full-time and improving their education levels.

 

 

The struggle for self-sufficiency

 

According to the study, the majority of these women are hard at work. From 2000 to 2008, the percentage not in the workforce dropped from 25 percent to 15 percent. Only 7 percent were unemployed. In 2008, 78 percent of the women were employed—79 percent of whom were working more than 35 hours a week. Yet, only 6 percent of the women had received any form of public assistance, whether unemployment insurance benefits or cash benefits, in the 12 months

prior to the Census Bureau survey. Being better educated has not eliminated their financial challenges. The percentage of women in

the research population with a college degree or more increased to 13 percent from 2000 to 2008, while the percentage of women with less-than-high-school education declined.

 

 

Financial detours driven by housing costs

The clearest measure of the economic distress faced by women in the study is that they spend a high percentage of their income on housing costs—rent, mortgages or related taxes. Households that are “housing-burdened,” according to the U.S. federal government definition, spend one-third to one-half of their income on housing while “housing-distressed” households spend more

than half their income on housing alone. By 2008, the problem was most acute in suburban CookCounty:

 

 

Female heads-of-households with

Children $10,000 – $50,000 in annual household

income

Chicago 

City

Suburban

Cook County

Chicago

PMSA

 

Housing-burdened by 2008 77% 82% 78%

Housing-distressed by 2008 43% 47% 44%

Excerpt from Changing Conditions in a Changing World, Page 11, Table 6.

“Families paying so much of their income for housing are forced to cut back on food, clothing and health care expenditures, with bad consequences for all family members—especially the children,” said Dr. Malcolm Bush, senior research fellow at University of Chicago’s Chapin Hall, who led the research effort.

According to the report, the percentage of women-led households with children living in overcrowded situations rose from 10 percent in 2005 to 12 percent in 2008.

 

“We understand the grim reality that a lack of affordable housing options brings low-income, single working mothers,” noted Márquez. “Through our Eleanor Network, we leverage rental subsidies from the City of Chicago to help reduce housing burdens. And we provide financial counseling to help these women balance housing and household expenses, and start saving for their families’ futures—as well as career education to put them on a path to jobs that pay familysupporting wages. But growing challenges require regional solutions because households led by low-income, working women anchor nearly every urban and suburban community.”

 

 

The Eleanor Network, a program model for advancing single working women

 

In 2006, the Eleanor Foundation began designing programs with its grantee partners to build a citywide network of services to help single working women address core barriers to their selfsufficiency— investing $3.9 million to date with support from donors and co-funders. Currently, this Eleanor Network comprises five “hub” grantee partners and nine resource grantee partners that together deliver integrated services in career education, affordable housing, financial

management and childcare. The Foundation continues to expand the Network to address urban women’s needs, and offer lessons learned with policymakers, foundations and others.

 

The findings were released at Turning Point for a Modern Majority: Evolving Conditions for Metropolitan Chicago’s Women-Led Households, a research briefing convened by the Eleanor Foundation at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago on Tuesday, Oct. 26.

 

About the research

The research report, Changing Conditions in a Changing World—The Situation of Working Female Heads-of-Households in the Chicago region: Issues, Insights, Implications,” analyzes key data for the years 2000, 2005 and 2008 concerning female heads-of-households in metropolitan Chicago who earn between $10,000 and $50,000 per year, an income range that corresponds to several key definitions of low- and moderate-income households in the Chicago region. Primary data was derived from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2000 U.S. Census and its American Community Surveys. The study encompasses the eight counties that comprise the Chicago primary metropolitan statistical area (PMSA): Cook, DeKalb, DuPage, Grundy, Kane, Kendall, McHenry and Will.

 

About Eleanor Foundation

Founded in 1898, the Eleanor Foundation is a premier grant-making fund that invests in innovative programs for single working women who head Chicago households and are determined to achieve sustainable economic independence. The Foundation provides funding, research and institutional expertise to organizations creating programs that help these women address the core barriers to their economic security.

 

For more information, please visit www.eleanorfoundation.org.

Jesse White and the Chicago Blackhawks Unveil New Permanent Blackhawks License Plate

Posted by Admin On October - 27 - 2010 ADD COMMENTS

Money Raised From the License Plates To Support Public Schools

 

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White and the Chicago Blackhawks unveiled the new Chicago Blackhawks permanent Illinois license plate.                                                                                                 

 The bright red plate, which features the Blackhawks logo, was on display during a press conference at the James R. Thompson Center.  Hockey Hall of Famer and Blackhawks Ambassador Stan Mikita, Three-time NHL All-Star Marty Turco, and Chicago Blackhawks executives including President John McDonough were on hand for the unveiling.

 “We are proud to make these license plates available to the public as a means of showing Blackhawks team spirit and supporting education across the state,” White said.  “It’s a fitting time for us to kick off this new series of plates following their historic season.”

 Twenty-five dollars from each license plate will support the Professional Sports Teams Education Fund with proceeds going to the Common School Fund which supports public schools throughout the state of Illinois.

 Public Act 095-0331, enacted in 2002, allows for Illinois sports teams to have license plates, designated as Professional Sports Teams license plates. The Chicago Blackhawks are the first sports team in the state to take advantage of the law.

“We are proud to partner with Jesse White and his office to help support such a great cause,” Blackhawks Executive Vice President Jay Blunk said. “This provides a great opportunity for hockey and sports fans across the state of Illinois to show their affinity for the Blackhawks while raising money for the public school system.”

 The public can preorder the license plates by visiting www.cyberdriveillinois.com.  Fans can order random number, personalized or vanity license plates. Those plates will be mailed out on November 10th.

Fans who attend the Chicago Blackhawks game on November 10th at the United Center will be able to purchase and walk away with a random number plate.  The Secretary of State’s mobile unit will also be able to register people for the personalized and vanity license plates at the game.

The cost to purchase a random number Blackhawks plates for someone with a currently titled vehicle would be $139.  For a newly-acquired vehicle with no current plate, the cost would be $234.

Pricing varies for vanity and personalized license plates.

Attorney General Madigan announces Bill to strengthen Meth Laws, crack down on repeat meth offenders

Posted by Admin On October - 27 - 2010 ADD COMMENTS

 

Legislation Would Prohibit Repeat Offenders From Buying Meth Ingredients, Help Safeguard Area Communities

 

Herrin — Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced new legislation to strengthen state law on production and use of methamphetamine that will impose harsher penalties on repeat meth users and producers. The measure is aimed at the offenders who reenter society after a meth-related conviction only to continue cooking and using the drug in their communities.  Madigan will work with Senators Gary Forby and William Haine and Representatives John Bradley and Brandon Phelps on this legislation.

 

“This legislation targets the repeat offenders who have been freed from prison only to slide back into their old ways, producing a drug that endangers their lives and the lives of their unsuspecting neighbors,” Attorney General Madigan said. “Protecting communities from the dangers of meth and its production is a priority for my office.”

 

Madigan was joined by state and local officials today at Herrin City Hall to announce the legislation.

 

“This is another example of Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s commitment to our region and fighting the scourge of meth,” said state Rep. John Bradley of Marion.

 

The Attorney General’s proposal takes aim at those convicted of meth-related offenses who too often continue to use and cook meth. Specifically, offenders serving terms of mandatory supervised release or probation or those on bond for meth-related offenses would be:

 

·         Banned from purchasing or possessing any product containing pseudoephedrine, a key meth ingredient, without approval.

·         Prohibited from purchasing or possessing any product containing ammonium nitrate, another ingredient in meth production.

 

The bill also mandates the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) issue parole violations if an offender is again charged with a violation of the Meth Control and Community Protection Act or a violation of the Meth Precursor Control Act. It would also require IDOC to provide written notice to the Illinois State Police (ISP), the local state’s attorneys’ and sheriffs’ offices of the release or discharge of any person convicted of a methamphetamine offense.

 

“The powerful addictive nature of meth must be met by a vigorous law enforcement response,” said state Sen. William Haine of Alton. “This is part of Attorney General Madigan’s continuing battle and it is absolutely necessary.”

 

Currently, more than 10 percent of those on mandatory supervised release violate meth laws after leaving prison. Law enforcement agencies in central and southern Illinois are increasingly finding more “one-pot” meth cooks, a reference to the meth batches made with legal quantities of pseudoephedrine and with ammonium nitrate obtained from products like cold packs. These labs represent a threat to not only the user but to neighbors and law enforcement, who may be exposed to toxic byproducts or even explosions from the meth-making process.

 

“I applaud the Attorney General for her persistent fight against this dangerous drug,” said state Rep. Brandon Phelps of Harrisburg. “With this law, we can work to prevent meth makers from falling back into their drug-using ways and from harming others.”

 

When Madigan assumed her post in 2003 the use and production of meth was at epidemic levels. Since that time she has led successful efforts to require strict purchasing regulations of products containing pseudoephedrine and created meth-specific offenses that law enforcement agencies across the state have used to arrest and prosecute these offenders.

 

She initiated the Methamphetamine Control and Community Protection Act, which took effect in September 2005 and created two new offenses: possession of anhydrous ammonia with intent to manufacture meth, and aggravated possession of anhydrous ammonia with intent to manufacture meth. It also increased penalties for possession of anhydrous ammonia in an unauthorized container and tampering with anhydrous ammonia equipment, raising these offenses from Class 4 to Class 3 felonies.

The Methamphetamine Precursor Control Act, also initiated by Madigan, imposed stricter controls on the display and sale of pseudoephedrine. Since the law took effect in January 2006, the number and size of meth labs in Illinois have decreased. This law also resulted in a dramatic reduction in the flow of out-of-state meth-makers coming to Illinois to purchase pseudoephedrine and other meth ingredients.

In 2008, Attorney General Madigan, state Rep. John E. Bradley (D-Marion) and Williamson County Sheriff Tom Cundiff unveiled a pilot project allowing law enforcement officials and pharmacies in Williamson, Franklin, Jackson, Johnson, Saline and Union counties to track pseudoephedrine purchases in a central database to catch meth makers traveling from town to town purchasing needed ingredients for manufacturing. The project was funded with a $98,000 federal U.S. Department of Justice Community Oriented Policing Services grant. Madigan has since worked to expand the pilot to other counties across the state.

“We have had tremendous success in stamping out meth labs in Illinois, but we must remain vigilant to prevent meth makers and users from finding a home in our state,” Madigan said. “This legislation would put meth offenders on special watch to prevent them from further destroying their lives and ensuring a safe environment for all our communities.”

The Attorney General plans to propose the new legislation in the General Assembly’s upcoming spring session.

 

Media Reports Predict Gloom and Doom for Democrats but Fail to Focus on Extremist Candidates; Many Backed by the Tea Party Movement

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On October - 27 - 2010 ADD COMMENTS

 

Commentary

 

By Juanita Bratcher

Democrats are getting a good beat-down in the media leading up to the November 2nd Election. Gloom and doom is spinning its wheels up and down the Internet and in the media on a daily basis.

In this Election Year, the media is giving a dim outlook for Democrats running for election or re-election; especially incumbents. That’s because, they report, Americans are “angry” about the economy and the policies of the Obama Administration. But let’s be mindful here…please, no memory loss. When the Obama Administration took over, the economy was already in a dire mess. And the situation cannot be corrected overnight. It took eight years to get us there, and the Obama Administration has only been at the helm of Federal Government a little short of two years.

But while these media reports are giving a grim view of Democrats’ future hold on the U.S. House and numbers in the U.S. Senate – at times pumping out generic polls between Democrats and Republicans – they have failed to fully enlighten voters of the extreme agendas of Tea Party-backed candidates – many of whom are absolute extremists – who spew out incoherent noises in way of their agenda for America, if elected. They are not ready for prime time on the national stage. And they conceal their agendas hoping that they can skip into office albeit their silence. They refuse to answer questions about their agendas for America. And if by chance they unguardedly say something – their thoughts are far over the moon and off the radar screen.

Nonetheless, nothing is over until the FAT LADY sings…until the last vote is counted…and the official results are in.

In an article I wrote a few weeks ago, “Voters Will Get the Last Word on November 2nd; Not the Pollsters”, I questioned polls and pollsters. I still do.

I’ve never been one that fully believed in the results of political polling. Even in this Election Year, I am apprehensive about the overall poll data I have read from various sources. And generic polls are even more questionable. However, I do believe that the data from these polls can sometimes have a resounding effect on public opinion. And that can be a bit eerie.

Pollsters survey a small group of people (who knows who – party affiliation, background, race) and use that data as a determining factor as to how thousands or millions of people – depending on whether it is a local election or a national election – will vote at the polls on Election Day.

So, when we go to the polls to vote on November 2nd or if participating in Early Voting, we must be mindful of our actions – to vote for those candidates whose main agenda is to make America a great country, candidates whose goals are to move this country forward, not backward, and that their motivations and actions are in the best interest of all Americans.

Vote as though our future depends on it…because it does!

Dirty politics stoops to new low

Posted by Juanita Bratcher On October - 27 - 2010 ADD COMMENTS

Commentary

By Juanita Bratcher

 

 Every time you think dirty political tricks have hit rock bottom, something comes along so sinister and absurd that it gets first-place status over all the others.

 Dirty politics stooped to a new low recently in Nevada where a conservative 527 group, Latinos for Reform, put together an ad with a Spanish speaking narrator, discouraging Latino voters not to vote in the November 2, 2010 Election because of failure by Democrats to pass comprehensive immigration reform, among other things. Reportedly, the group was in the process of purchasing $80,000 in air time on Univision, a Spanish-language network.

 It was by far deceitful trickery. But it hit a dead end before it got off the ground. It ran about five times on radio but never made its way to television.

 The ad stated that the Democratic leadership “betrayed us. And now, when they need our votes they are at it again with more empty promises. Aren’t you tired of politicians playing games with your future? Do you really think it will be different this time?”

 The ad went on to state that Democratic leaders must pay for their broken promises and betrayals. “If we just go on supporting them in November, they will keep playing games with our future and taking our vote for granted. Don’t vote this November. This is the only way to send them a clear message.”

 Subsequently, the ad was condemned by local Hispanic leaders who asked that local stations not run the ad.

 A spokesman for Univision said it would not be running any spots from the activist group.

 Reportedly, the ad is only running in Nevada where Senate leader Harry Reid is in a tough battle against Sharron Angle to retain his Senate seat.

 Some years ago a similar scenario took place here in Chicago when African-Americans were told to “go fishing” on Election Day, boycott the polls. That one, too, never got off the ground.

 When President Lyndon Johnson was weighing the possibility of a Voting Rights Bill, he stated that “Every American citizen must have an equal right to vote. There is no reason which can excuse the denial of that right.”

 Johnson also noted that “The vote is the most powerful instrument ever devised by man for breaking down injustice and destroying the terrible walls which imprison men because they are different from other men.”

 The Voting Rights Act was passed in 1965.

In a poem I wrote, The Power of the Ballot, that appeared in my book, “I Cry for a People: In Their Struggle for Justice and Equality”, it noted that: 

                              Voting has a purpose

                              It gives people a choice

                              To elect their representatives

                              And reinforce their silent voice

 I’m also in agreement with a quote by George Jean Nathan, American Journalist, Critic, Essayist and Editor (1882-1958): “Bad officials are elected by good citizens who do not vote.”

 Voting is important. And no matter the disenchantment or frustration with politicians or the political system; it is better to vote than not to vote. Voters should make certain that their silent voices be heard at the polls on Election Day. 

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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