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Archive for July 15th, 2011

National Urban League Conference Makes Boston the Epicenter of War on Unemployment

Posted by Admin On July - 15 - 2011 1 COMMENT

By Marc H. Morial, President and CEO
National Urban League

 

“During one critical and dynamic week in July, Boston will make history.”  Darnell Williams, President and CEO, Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts

From July 27-30, the National Urban League, in cooperation with the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts, will bring our “Jobs Rebuild America” national conference to the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center.  Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts CEO, Darnell Williams serves as host for this clarion call for economic empowerment.
 
With overall unemployment now at 9.2 percent, African American unemployment at 16.2 percent, and Black youth unemployment topping 40 percent, this year’s conference gives us the opportunity to highlight solutions and focus the nation’s attention on the on-going jobs crisis in urban and minority communities.  It will be one of the most important, dynamic and productive gatherings in our 101 year history.

The conference also convenes just before the August 2nd debt crisis deadline.  A failure to raise the debt ceiling or a deal that raises it by cutting critical domestic and social safety net programs, could prove disastrous to already struggling urban communities.

These and other jobs-related issues will be the focus of four days of  workshops, dialogues and forums led by thought leaders from the business, political, and non-profit sectors.

The opening plenary on Thursday will feature an important conversation between corporate leader and philanthropist Bill Gates, and Harvard professor and author Dr. Henry Louis Gates on their respective approaches to education reform and the link to jobs.  Other conference speakers include Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick; Boston Mayor, Thomas Menino; Suzanne dePasse, co-chair of dePasse Jones  Entertainment; the Rev. Al Sharpton; and Harvard Law Professor Dr. Charles Ogletree.

While thousands of registered attendees from across the nation will gather for the conference, local residents will have access to career and college fairs and an Expo Hall – all free and open to the public.  As we learned during our “War on Unemployment Jobs Tour” visit to Boston in May, New Englanders have been hard hit by the unemployment crisis.  Many of them are among the 44 percent of all unemployed people who have been jobless for more than 27 weeks.  They told us back in May that they were looking forward to this second chance to avail themselves of employment opportunities and make their voices heard.

A major focus of the conference will be the National Urban League’s 12-point Jobs Rebuild America plan.  Introduced earlier this year, our plan offers a dozen dynamic and imaginative ideas to rescue those most profoundly affected by the on-going economic emergency.  It also suggests remedies for the underlying causes behind its inordinate and amplified impact on communities served by Urban League affiliates.

As part of our commitment to put Urban America back to work, the National Urban League will unveil the Urban League Jobs Network, connecting companies, candidates, recruiters, and job opportunities across urban America. UrbanLeagueJobsNetwork.com will provide a one-stop source and central location for employers and job seekers nationwide, attracting thousands of highly-educated urban professionals and serving as an integral part of the strategy for companies committed to diversity.

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, co-chairs of the Conference Host Committee, have expressed excitement about the chance to showcase the city while giving thousands of visitors and local citizens this unique opportunity to enlist in the War on Unemployment.  Title corporate sponsors include Bank of America, CVS Caremark, EMC2 and State Street.

For more information and to find out how to register for the conference visit www.nul.org. Hope to see you in Boston. 

28TBE 7/13/11 â–ª 120 Wall Street â–ª New York, NY 10005 â–ª (212) 558-5300 â–ª WWW.NUL.ORG
 

 

 

 

 
 

 

National Bankers Association spearheads “The Peoples Economic Movement”, a national promotional campaign

Posted by Admin On July - 15 - 2011 ADD COMMENTS

 

The National Bankers Association (N.B.A.) is teaming with a popular, nationally-syndicated radio talk show host, Warren Ballentine, to spearhead a national campaign to get minorities and other consumers in the urban areas to bank with minority banks.

 

A press conference to kick-off the campaign will be held, Friday, July 15th at 12:00 noon at the headquarters of the National Bankers Association located at 1513 P St., NW, Washington, D.C.

 

The promotional campaign, being called “The People’s Economic Movement,” is being orchestrated to coincide with the unveiling of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial statute in Washington, D.C. August 28, 2011.

 

According to Michael Grant, president of the NBA, “This self-help, empowerment movement is designed to stimulate much-needed economic development at our nation’s urban core.  By depositing their money in minority banks, getting mortgages, small business loans or loans for college tuition from banks in their communities, consumers begin a process of harnessing the economic strength of the masses in a way that creates direct benefits to their communities which are still suffering from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.”

 

Asked why the campaign is being called: “The People’s Economic Movement,” Radio One talk show host Warren Ballentine explained: “This recession has created not a moment in time but a movement in time.  Community economic development will only come with an intelligent and targeted approach to managing money.  By investing their money in the minority banks in their own communities, consumers will begin to see how to make capitalism work in their favor.”

 

The National Bankers Association is a consortium of African-American, Hispanic-American, Asian-American and Native-American owned banks.  The association’s member banks operate branches in 29 cities located across America.  In the aggregate, these banks have over $15 billion in assets and serve over 3 million depositors.

 

As an example of how little support minority banks are receiving from their potential customer base, economists have estimated that while the African-American community has over one trillion dollars in disposable income a year, it has been estimated that African-American owned banks manage less than 5% of the wealth in the communities that they serve.

 

“The People’s Economic Movement” will include NBA banks from all over America – especially in urban communities.

 

Organizational leaders and celebrities who are supporting “the People’s Economic Movement” are as follows:

 

Reverend Al Sharpton                                   

Boris Kodjoe                                                             

Roger Campos                                               

CeCe Winans                                                 

Reverend Frank Reid of Baltimore   

Reverend Rudy Rasmus of Houston             

Reverend Buster Soaries of Newark 

Marc Morial

Hilary Shelton

 

 

 

 

Illinois Lt. Governor Simon chairs first meeting of revamped Rural Affairs Council

Posted by Admin On July - 15 - 2011 7 COMMENTS

 

Welcomes six citizen members and the Illinois Farm Bureau

 

Springfield, IL – Illinois’ only constitutional officer from southern Illinois, Lt. Governor Sheila Simon welcomed seven new members of the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council today, enlisting their help in her bid to grow the Illinois local food economy and expand emergency response services for rural citizens.

The 25-member council, which Lt. Governor Simon chairs, was re-launched this year by executive order and includes six new citizen members and a representative from the Illinois Farm Bureau in addition to representatives from various state agencies, institutions and organizations.

The volunteer membership reflects a new focus on developing markets for local foods, improving emergency services in rural areas, and other emerging rural issues. The Lt. Governor also announced that subcommittees will be created to work on local food and EMS issues. 

“I am excited to begin the work of the Rural Affairs Council with its expanded membership that lends a grassroots voice to rural issues in Illinois,” Lt. Governor Simon said. “Our new membership has a diverse background of experience that will help forward my agenda of making fresh local food accessible to all Illinois citizens and improving the delivery of emergency services to rural Illinois residents.”

The Illinois Farm Bureau, which has never had a seat on the council since it was founded in 1986, will be represented by District 14 Director Steve Hosselton of Louisville. The council’s citizen members include Dr. Leslie Duram of Carbondale, Heather Hampton-Knodle of Hillsboro, Porter McNeil of Moline, Robin Rose of Gibson City, Mark Rothert of Canton and Greg Scott of Bloomington.

The Lt. Governor stressed the importance of local foods in creating a health economy and healthy citizens, a message she brought to Bloomington at a recent local foods summit. Simon pledged to seek funding sources to help more farmers markets purchase wireless LINK debit card machines. Though food stamp usage is up 269 percent at farmers markets, just 49 farmers markets and direct marketing farmers currently accept LINK, a fraction of the over 300 farmers markets and direct marketing farmers in Illinois.

Simon began the meeting at Lincoln Land Community College by providing an overview of the history of the council, which recognizes its 25th anniversary this year. Simon also honored Dr. Norman Walzer, a Senior Research Scholar at the Center for Governmental Studies at Northern Illinois University for his work in helping develop the council and founding the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at Western Illinois University in 1989.

Volunteer Citizen Members

Dr. Leslie Duram, a Fulbright Scholar, is the chair of the Geography and Environmental Resources Department at Southern Illinois University-Carbondale and served on the Local and Organic Food and Farm Task Force in 2008. Duram has written extensively about organic farming and the benefits of increasing access to fresh local food.

Heather Hampton-Knodle is the Chairman of the Central Illinois Economic Development Authority and has experience managing or working for various organizations dedicated to agriculture and rural development. Hampton-Knodle also farms with her husband Brian.  

Porter McNeil is the president of public relations firm McNeil Communications in Moline. McNeil has done communications work for non-profit organizations focused on regional economic development. McNeil also helped craft communications strategies promoting development of the new WIU-QC Riverfront Campus and Mississippi River Technology Corridor.

Robin Rose is the Chief Nursing Officer and Chief Operating Officer of Gibson Area Hospital and Health Services in Gibson City. In 2010 Robin received the National Rural Healthcare Association’s Louis Gorin Award for her achievements and contributions to rural health care.

Mark Rothert is the Executive Director of the Spoon River Partnership for Economic Development in Canton. His efforts span the scope of business development and attraction, community marketing, tourism, and downtown revitalization. Rothert has been responsible for creation of Canton Main Street, completion of the Canton comprehensive plan, and securing nearly $5 million in federal and state grants for Canton.

Gregory Scott is the Director of the McLean County Area EMS System in Bloomington and has been involved in emergency medical services for 25 years. Scott’s duties in emergency medical services have ranged from front-line patient care to administrative. Scott is co-chair of the Illinois EMS Advisory Council’s Rural EMS Recruitment/Retention committee.

The next meeting of the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council will be held on Wednesday, October 19. Check the Lt. Governor’s Rural Affairs webpage at http://www2.illinois.gov/ltgov/pages/RuralAffairs.aspx for updates on meeting time and location.

Cook County State’s Attorney secures significant sentence in first ever Human Trafficking Conviction

Posted by Admin On July - 15 - 2011 ADD COMMENTS

 

The organizer of a sex ring who forced women to prostitute themselves for money was sentenced to 18 years in prison in Cook County’s first conviction in a human trafficking case, State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez announced.

Troy Bonaparte, 46, was convicted by a jury in March of Involuntary Servitude, Trafficking in Persons for Forced Labor or Services, and Pandering.

Bonaparte was arrested on August 8, 2010 by undercover investigators in an Elk Grove Village motel room, where he was found with money and computer equipment used to run the prostitution ring. Bonaparte’s conviction was the result of efforts by State’s Attorney Alvarez’s new Human Trafficking Initiative Unit, which worked in cooperation in this case with Cook County Sheriff’s Police.

“Today’s sentence represents a significant achievement in our new efforts to investigate and prosecute the crime of human trafficking, which is occurring in our own backyard,” said Alvarez.

Under the new initiative, Cook County prosecutors work with law enforcement partners at the federal, state and local level on long term investigations and assist social service providers with securing services for women and children who are victims of human trafficking.

According to prosecutors, Bonaparte, who went by the street name, “Magnificent”, rented motel rooms at various locations in the city and surrounding suburbs, where women would service up to 25 customers per day. Bonaparte kept all of the money the women earned and threatened to beat or kill them if they didn’t comply with his demands to perform the sex acts.

Cook County Judge William Lacy sentenced Bonaparte to the 18 year prison sentence during a court hearing.

State’s Attorney Alvarez thanked investigators and Assistant State’s Attorneys Beth Pfeiffer and Matthew Thrun of the Human Trafficking Initiative Unit for their handling of the case. She also thanked the Cook County Sheriff’s Police Vice Unit for their assistance.

Better Business Bureau warns vacationers: Beware of cell phone charges while abroad

Posted by Admin On July - 15 - 2011 ADD COMMENTS
 

 

(Message from Better Business Bureau) 

 

 

CHICAGO, ILWith today’s technology, cell phone users can surf the web, receive emails and watch movies on their smart phones. When traveling abroad, many users fail to recognize their data plan is constantly in use, even when they think their phone isn’t.

 

In the past twelve months, the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and northern Illinois received more than 482 complaints against the cell phone industry, many of which were from customers who were unaware their data was still in use as they traveled outside their coverage area.

 

“Vacationers often rack up more expenses than initially planned when traveling,” said Steve J. Bernas, President & CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and northern Illinois. “It’s important to make sure you aren’t paying extra for a cell phone not being used

.”
According to the Federal Communications Commission, “roaming” is the term that describes a wireless phone’s ability to make and receive calls outside the designated coverage area under your service plan. Before traveling abroad or out of your coverage area, it’s important for consumers to be proactive and contact their provider for specific details regarding their individual data plan.
 
BBB advises consumers to do the following with their cell phone and cell phone provider in preparation for a trip abroad: 
 

 

 

  • Turn off your phone. If you don’t need your phone and don’t plan to use it while traveling abroad, turn it off. Another option is to rent or buy an international cell phone. Many rental plans offer services that work in several countries and may provide free incoming calls.
  • Contact your cell phone provider. Cell phone users generally know not to make calls or send text messages while out of their coverage area or abroad. For the occasional traveler who doesn’t frequently talk on the phone, it may be worth looking into an international add-on plan. Your cell phone carrier can provide specific tips that cater to the roaming needs of your individual cell phone and data plan.
  • Invest in a prepaid SIM card. For frequent, chatty travelers or long-term travelers, investing in a prepaid SIM card may be the best option. With access to a local phone number, you’ll be able to make phone calls at the country’s local rate.
  • Check with your BBB. Travelers should always check with your BBB before choosing an international service provider at www.bbb.org

 

For more information on finding businesses and consumer tips you can trust, visit www.bbb.org  

 

Cogic Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake makes historic first time visit to Japan

Posted by Admin On July - 15 - 2011 ADD COMMENTS

 

COGIC Charities will donate $100,000 to Japan for disaster relief this July


Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake

 

Memphis, TN – COGIC Charities, the benevolent arm of the nearly 6.5 million member Church of God in Christ, will give funds to aid the relief efforts in Japan.

A COGIC delegation, led by Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr., will leave for Tokyo at the end of July and meet with Japanese and American officials to discuss the additional needs of the country. Bishop Blake will lead a prayer for the victims of the recent earthquake and tsunami. He will also host a breakfast for our servicemen and women returning from fighting for our freedom.

During the trip, the charity will present a check for $100,000 to help purchase rice cookers and any additional items that may be needed. While this is the first time the leader of the fourth largest Protestant and the second largest Pentecostal denomination in the US has traveled to Japan, this is by no means the first time COGIC Charities has aided countries during times of crisis.

Since its inception in 2003, the charity has given:

* $150,000 donation to tsunami victims in East Africa through the United Nations Food Agriculture Organization;
* $100,000 donation to Horn of Africa Relief and Development Organization in Somalia;
* $1 million donation to Hurricane Katrina relief efforts;
* $50,000 donation for the Uganda Women’s Health Initiative; and
* $1.1 million to Haiti Earthquake Relief Effort

Bishop Blake explains, “We Care is not just a slogan for COGIC Charities, but we believe that it is our duty to feed the hungry, clothe the naked and shelter the homeless.”

The COGIC jurisdictional bishop of Japan, Bishop Carl D. Hodges, echoed that sentiment. He also states that the COGIC churches in Japan are anxiously awaiting the arrival of the Presiding Bishop and his delegation. They are looking forward to the opportunity to share with him the great cultural experience that is Japan.

For more details, visit www.cogic.org

TimeLine Theatre Company launches 15th Anniversary Season with concurrent productions at two locations

Posted by Admin On July - 15 - 2011 ADD COMMENTS

 

A Walk in the Woods by Lee Blessing runs August 18 -November 20 at Theater Wit, followed closely by the Chicago premiere of Lee Hall’s The Pitmen Painters, September 6 – December 4 at TimeLine Theatre

 

TimeLine Theatre Company, named the nation’s theater “Company of the Year” by The Wall Street Journal in 2010 and Best Theatre by Chicago Magazine in its “Best of Chicago” issue in 2011, starts the most ambitious season in its 15-year history with two productions presented at two locations, opening within three weeks of each other:

The company’s 15th Anniversary season begins with the Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award-nominated A Walk in the Woods by Lee Blessing, directed by TimeLine Associate Artistic Director Nick Bowling, August 22 – November 20, 2011 (previews August 18 through August 21) at Theater Wit, 1229 W. Belmont Ave., Chicago. Press Opening performances of A Walk in the Woods are Sunday, August 21 at 6 p.m. and Monday, August 22 at 7:30 p.m.

Days later is the Chicago premiere of The Pitmen Painters by Lee Hall, directed by Northlight Theatre Artistic Director BJ Jones, September 10 – December 4, 2011 (previews September 6 through September 9) at TimeLine Theatre, 615 W. Wellington Ave., Chicago. Press Opening performances of The Pitmen Painters are Saturday, September 10 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, September 11 at 2 p.m.

To purchase tickets or for more information about A Walk in the Woods, call the Theater Wit Box Office at 773.975.8150 or visit timelinetheatre.com and for The Pitmen Painters, call the TimeLine Theatre Box Office at 773.281.8463 x6 or visit timelinetheatre.com.

TimeLine’s ambitious fall schedule is the result of the company’s efforts to expand the number of performances and available tickets in its season. Many recent productions have sold out, and TimeLine’s subscriber base has grown by 75% over the past two years. By producing one of the season’s four plays at an alternate venue, TimeLine is able to add 107 performances to its schedule; the company will produce at total of 53 performance weeks during the 2011-2012 season.

“This expansion beyond our home on Wellington Avenue is part of a vision to grow in smart ways, elevating our profile in Chicago and beyond and introducing our mission to a broader audience,” Artistic Director PJ Powers said. “Our aim is to ignite dialogue with audience members about our place and role in history, and to spark discussion about vital issues in today’s local and national conversation. So with these plays we are asking questions like: Is negotiation and talking with our adversaries essential in an ever-shifting and volatile political landscape? And how can art play a role in everyone’s lives, not just the wealthy and privileged? We can’t wait to get started!”

ABOUT TIMELINE THEATRE

Founded in April 1997, TimeLine Theatre Company’s mission is to present stories inspired by history that connect with today’s social and political issues. During its first 14 seasons, TimeLine has presented 46 productions, including seven world premieres and 13 Chicago premieres. Recipient of the 2006 Alford-Axelson Award for Nonprofit Managerial Excellence and the 2009 Richard Goodman Strategic Planning Award from the Association for Strategic Planning, TimeLine has received 43 Jeff Awards, including an award for Outstanding Production eight times.

Also announced for the 2011-2012 15th Anniversary Season:

  • Chicago premiere of ENRON by Lucy Prebble, directed by Rachel Rockwell,
    January 17 – April 15, 2012
  • World premiere of MY KIND OF TOWN by John Conroy, directed by Nick Bowling, May 1 – July 29, 2012

TimeLine is led by Artistic Director PJ Powers and Managing Director Elizabeth K. Auman. Company members are Nick Bowling, Janet Ulrich Brooks, Lara Goetsch, Juliet Hart, David Parkes, PJ Powers and Benjamin Thiem. TimeLine is a member of the League of Chicago Theatres, Theatre Communications Group and the Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce.

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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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