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Archive for March, 2012

The CME Commission on Social Justice and Human Concerns issues statement calling for justice for Trayvon Martin

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on The CME Commission on Social Justice and Human Concerns issues statement calling for justice for Trayvon Martin


Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — The Commission on Social Justice and Human Concerns of the Christian Methodist Episcopal (CME) Church stands with all religious and civic organizations in the demand for justice in the unprovoked slaying of 17-year-old African American, Trayvon Martin by 28-year-old neighborhood watch volunteer, George Zimmerman.

They have issued the following statement:

On behalf of the College of Bishops and all CMEs, we extend our deepest condolences to Tracey Martin (father), Sybrina Fulton (mother), and the entire family.

The Commission stands with the parents, community and civil rights organizations, and local churches in demanding the prosecution of Zimmerman, and for a full and thorough investigation into the handling of the Trayvon Martin case by the Sanford Police Department and the City of Sanford, Florida. We also stand with community leaders across the country who are calling for a repeal of the dangerous “Stand Your Ground” law that is shielding Martin’s killer. The Commission also expresses appreciation for the role of social media in stoking the flames of awareness of this case, which apparently authorities wish to cover-up. We must begin to invest in our existing and new networking substructures to aid in the organizing of our work together to stand for our children.

In the wake of this tragic and incomprehensible killing, we must be evermore vigilant in our efforts to surround, support and save our Black children. Like the brutal slaying of Emmitt Till on August 28, 1955, the shooting of Trayvon Martin once again brings to our national consciousness the appalling plight of Black boys growing up in America. We are grateful to popular personalities like Tom Joyner and Michael Baisden who, like Ebony/Jet publisher John H. Johnson did fifty-seven years ago with the Emmitt Till story, trumpeted this case to their national audience and demanded proper attention be given. Now we as the Black Church must pick up the baton and once again lead the social movement for justice.

We salute Ben Jealous and the NAACP, Rev. Al Sharpton and the National Action Network, and Rev. Jesse Lewis Jackson, Sr. and Rainbow/PUSH for their critical courageous leadership in bringing clarity and conscience to the fight for justice in the Trayvon Martin incident. We call upon all Black Churches and all religious organizations in the nation to concerted prayer for justice in the Trayvon Martin case and encourage all congregations to observe a “Moment of Prayer for Black Children” on Easter/Resurrection Sunday.

We also call for the implementation of Rites of Passage Programs, as suggested by the 2010 Great Gathering of Combined Black Methodist bodies. In our efforts, we must work to more effectively address the issues of education, employment, healthcare and social ethics – from social media to rap music – to develop our boys and girls in safe, supportive environments to be strong moral leaders. We must protect our children from racial profiling, as is evident in this case, and also protect them from the psychologically debilitating and spiritually demonic impacts of racism upon their minds and hearts that create the conditions for fratricidal conflict within the Black community – including Black-on-Black homicide, domestic violence, rape and incest.

Furthermore, we must partner with local schools and youth organizations to help educate, inspire and mentor our children through programs like One Church One School and the Children’s Defense Fund Freedom Schools. Lastly, we must realize that the issues surrounding the Trayvon Martin case are not short-term issues, but long-term issues that require deep commitment and investment.

Therefore we call upon our national religious, educational, political, business, and civil rights leaders, across the spectrums of race and political party, to convene a national summit to address the critical issues facing our Black youth today.

About the Christian Methodist Episcopal (CME) Church

The Christian Methodist Episcopal Church, under the leadership of Senior Bishop Thomas L. Hoyt, Jr. and its College of Bishops, is a 141-year old historically African American Christian denomination with more than 1.2 million members across the United States, and has missions and sister churches in Haiti, Jamaica and fourteen African nations. There are four CME related colleges, Lane College (Jackson, TN), Miles College (Birmingham, AL), Paine College (Augusta, GA) and Texas College (Tyler, TX). There is additionally a CME sponsored seminary, Phillips School of Theology, which is an affiliate member of the Interdenominational Theological Center (Atlanta, GA). For additional information about the C.M.E. Church, visit www.c-m-e.org

Senior Bishop Thomas L. Hoyt, Jr., CEO
Bishop Paul A. G. Stewart, Sr.
Bishop Lawrence L. Reddick, III , Secretary
Bishop Henry M. Williamson, Sr.
Bishop Thomas L. Brown, Sr.
Bishop Kenneth W. Carter
Bishop James B. Walker, Chair
Bishop Sylvester Williams
Bishop Teresa Snorton
Bishop Godwin T. Umoette
Bishop Ronald M. Cunningham
Bishop William H. Graves, Retired
Bishop Othal H. Lakey, Retired
Bishop Edward Lynn Brown, Retired
Bishop Dotcy I. Isom, Jr., Retired
Bishop Marshall Gilmore, Retired

Illinois House approves budget framework: Tough choices to follow

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on Illinois House approves budget framework: Tough choices to follow

(From Tom Cross, House Republican Leader and State Representative, 84thDistrict)

The Illinois House today (3/29/12) adopted a spending reduction and budget repair blueprint for the upcoming year – taking a major step toward ending the Springfield spending-spree that majority Democrats have presided over for a full decade.

The key fact is this – we are fundamentally altering the trajectory of state government.  We will start by honoring our promise to spend less than last year, less than Governor Pat Quinn proposed to spend in his recent budget address, and – for the first time in years – set our state budget back on the path to stability, strength, and balance.

The path forward is set, but let us be clear – the journey to our destination will be a difficult one as we grapple with the challenge of unraveling a budget crisis years in the making.

Click the image to watch Leader Cross’ remarks

By staying involved and driving the discussion, House Republicans have set in place a reversal of past budget practices which have failed to base spending on actual revenue.  Without us leading the charge for reform and holding the Democrats feet to the fire, there is little doubt the majority party, if left to their own devices, would spend every penny allowed under the artificially high spending “cap” they previously set for this year – which would spend $5 billion more than our estimated revenues.

Now that a spending number has been agreed to, the House Appropriations Committees have been charged with going through the budget line-by-line and cutting a total of more than $4 billion.   With Republicans at the table, we will have a say in where the cuts occur – but it will not be easy.   The cuts must be fair and all sectors of our budget will share in the pain.

Cuts are just one part of the equation, however.  We also need real reforms to Medicaid and pensions to fix our budget crisis – not gimmicks.And as we tighten our own belt in state spending, we must also do everything we can to restore Illinois’ competitiveness in attracting and retaining new jobs for Illinois families.

The actions we took today are a significant step – but there remains much important work to be done. The days of spending beyond our means and mortgaging our future on the backs of our children and grandchildren must end now.

On the road to lower taxes and fiscal stability, House Republicans will continue to drive down spending and push for real spending reforms. This remains our mission and commitment to you.

Tom Cross

House Republican Leader

State Representative, 84thDistrict

NATO protesters to announce response to Court’s Ruling at Press Conference today

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on NATO protesters to announce response to Court’s Ruling at Press Conference today

CHICAGO, IL – Organizers with the Coalition Against the NATO/G8 War & Poverty Agenda (CANG8) will announce their next steps in response to Administrative Law Officer Raymond Prosser’s ruling against them at a press conference to be held at 11:30 AM, Friday, March 30 at the office of the 8th Day Center for Justice, 205 W. Monroe Street, 5th floor.

CANG8 criticized the role of Mayor Emanuel in the decision denying them their preferred march route and rally location for Sunday, May 20th, 2012. 

“Mayor Emanuel lied to the people of Chicago,” said National Lawyers Guild attorney Jeff Frank, who represented the protesters in court on Tuesday. “He said the City had the ability to police this summit and at the same time protect the First Amendment rights of ordinary civilians. Now, in denying the permit, he’s said the City doesn’t have sufficient resources for the requested NATO protest route. This is part and parcel of Emanuel’s approach to governing — say anything to deflect valid criticism, and then torpedo those promises later.”

CANG8 had asked the City to allow them to push the date of a previously approved rally and march forward by a day from May 19 to May 20. The City rejected that proposal late last week, refusing to change the permit date by a day — for exactly the same gathering and route they had already approved when both the G8 and NATO meetings were planning to converge in Chicago.

“The city doesn’t want voices of opposition to the NATO war in Afghanistan or to the G8 agenda of poverty for the 99%,” said CANG8’s Joe Iosbaker.  Iosbaker had applied for and received a tentative permit for Daley Plaza for May 19th.  “In December, the City said that Daley Plaza would be open for First Amendment activity during the G8/NATO summits.”

The City has now not only denied a permit request for a First Amendment activity at the Plaza, it has defended its denial in an administrative hearing.

Joe Lombardo of Albany, New York, co-coordinator of the United National Antiwar Coalition, a member of CANG8, said, “At our national conference this past weekend attended by more than 500, we voted to mobilize to come to Chicago on May 20 to protest NATO and the G8.  We consider the City’s denial of our protest site and march route to be a violation of our right to protest.  We will do all within our power to reverse this decision.”

For more information, email CANGATE2012@gmail.com or go to www.CANG8.org

Madigan: AT&T, Verizon ban phone ‘Cramming’ scam as state legislation to stop practice advances

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on Madigan: AT&T, Verizon ban phone ‘Cramming’ scam as state legislation to stop practice advances

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan commended two national telephone companies for implementing bans to end a pervasive scam known as “cramming” that has hit hundreds of thousands of consumers and businesses with bogus charges on their phone bills.

The announcements by AT&T and Verizon to prohibit all third-party billing within their operations occurred as Madigan continues to push for universal bans in Illinois and on the federal level. Cramming is a scheme in which third-party vendors use consumers’ phone numbers much like a credit card – adding charges to phone bills for bogus products or services, such as identity theft protection, website design or email service, that consumers and businesses never asked for and never used.

“An outright ban on third-party billing is the only way to stop this scam and protect consumers,” Madigan said. “Thanks to efforts on the state and federal level, the major phone companies are moving in the right direction, but until an industry-wide ban is in effect, we will continue to pursue our legislation to put an end to this abusive billing practice that’s costing consumers untold millions.”

Madigan is working in Springfield this spring to pass House Bill 5211, a statewide ban on all billing by a third-party company with only limited, commonsense exceptions for legitimate services. Last year, Madigan testified before the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee and filed comments with the Federal Communications Commission calling for a similar, nationwide ban.

To date, Madigan’s office has filed 30 lawsuits against crammers, representing more than 200,000 Illinois businesses and residents who were victims of these phone billing schemes.

Telephone companies place an estimated 300 million third-party charges on their customers’ bills each year, and, according to a U.S. Senate Commerce Committee report, third-party billing generates at least $2 billion annually. The scams originally were perpetrated primarily through telemarketers, especially before the Do Not Call registry was established. More recently, however, the scam has flourished online. Internet users report simply submitting their phone number, among other personal information, for online prize drawings, surveys or free recipes. Weeks or months later, consumers find charges on their phone bills for unauthorized services.

GE & Partners announce winners of the first stage of $100 million “Healthymagination Cancer Challenge”

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on GE & Partners announce winners of the first stage of $100 million “Healthymagination Cancer Challenge”

Challenge focused on early-stage breast cancer breakthroughs that warrant discovery, incubation and acceleration through seed funding

Winning innovations could expedite breast cancer detection, diagnosis and improve the identification of effective therapies, allowing more patients to survive


San Francisco, CA– GE (NYSE: GE) announced five innovation award winners as part of the first stage of its $100 million “GE healthymagination Cancer Challenge.” More than 500 ideas from 40 countries were submitted, sparking robust conversations among more than 200 academic institutions and researchers on the Challenge’s open innovation platform.

 The five innovation award winners have the potential to help doctors find cancer earlier, make more accurate diagnoses and choose the best possible treatment based on each patient’s unique cancer. The submitted ideas include ones that could help doctors better understand the molecular similarities between breast cancer and other solid tumors with a particular focus on tumors associated with triple negative cancer, a type of cancer that is less responsive to standard treatments and is typically more aggressive. GE is committed to a new approach at healthymagination that shines a spotlight on early-stage ideas to accelerate the researchers’ work and ultimately help   patients sooner.

Beth Comstock, senior vice president and chief marketing officer, GE said, “We launched the Challenge as a call to action for oncology researchers, businesses, and other innovators around the world to accelerate innovation and help stop this deadly disease. It is often challenging for early stage research to grab the attention of seed investors. The Challenge has shown us that there are a remarkable number of breakthrough ideas out there that deserve promotion, investment and incubation.”

In addition to the $100,000 seed award, GE will provide support for each winner through mentorship and access to GE researchers and industry thought leaders with opportunity for expanded partnerships in the future. “GE and Clarient focus on helping health providers understand and define the drivers of a patient’s particular cancer. The Challenge winners’ work will change the future of fighting cancer,” said Carrie Eglinton-Manner, general manager of Clarient, the cancer diagnostics company acquired by GE in 2010. “In addition to the grant money, we will help mentor, develop and accelerate the growth of these winning ideas.”

The winners were selected by a panel of judges that included venture capital partners, GE executives, and several leading healthcare luminaries including former U.S. FDA Commissioner and National Cancer Institute Director, Dr. Andrew Von Eschenbach; Professor of Surgery and Director of the University of Michigan Breast Care Center, Dr. Lisa Newman; and cancer medicine specialist and Imperial College’s professor of cancer medicine, Dr. Justin Stebbing.

The five innovation Challenge award winners are:

  • MyCancerGenome- Personalized Approach to Triple Negative Breast Cancer: Vanderbilt University is developing MyCancerGenome, a free online cancer medicine resource and decision-making tool for physicians, patients, caregivers and researchers. It provides up-to-date information on what mutations make breast cancer grow and related treatment implications, including available genome- directed clinical trials for triple negative breast cancer.
  • Creating Safer & Stronger Breast Implants with Cancer-fighting and Healing Properties: The University of Akron is developing new materials for breast reconstruction to transform tissue expanders and implants into cancer-fighting and healing devices. Using coatings embedded with pharmaceutical agents the new device is expected to help fight infection, reduce inflammation, and possibly even target and destroy stray cancer cells.
  • Identifying a Predisposition to Cancer Spread: Moffitt Cancer Center is working to understand the genetic “modifier” genes and their role in predisposition to the spread of cancer to other parts of the body following cancer onset. This research could form the basis of diagnostic testing for genes that place a patient at disproportionate risk for cancer spread and guide aggressiveness of treatment.
  • Saving Lives in Developing Countries: For developing countries such as Uganda, breast ultrasound holds promise in identifying cancers in young women with palpable lumps. Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and Uganda Cancer Institute (UCI) in Kampala are establishing a breast cancer screening program where women will receive education about breast cancer and those with symptoms will be offered clinical breast exam and breast ultrasound. Women with suspicious lumps will be referred to the UCI for tissue sampling and, if malignancy is diagnosed, treatment.
  • Moving to Personalized Therapy for Triple Negative Breast Cancer: Researchers at Vanderbilt- Ingram Cancer Center have demonstrated that gene expression analysis reveals at least six distinct disease subtypes for triple negative breast cancer that likely respond differently to chemotherapy. Using this discovery, the Center is designing clinical trials with targeted therapy for select subtypes which will soon be offered to patients.

Women and breast cancer:

  • Approximately five black women per day die needlessly from breast cancer due to a lack of information and access to proper care (Recent study published in the Journal of Cancer Epidemiology)
  • Researchers from the Sinai Urban Health Institute in Chicago found a disparity gap in African American and Hispanic five year survivor rates in 21 out of 25 of the US largest cities.
  • GE has committed to accelerate cancer innovation by investing $1 billion in cancer technology research and development as well as improve care for 10 million cancer patients around the world by 2020. 

Information on the winners is available at www.healthymagination.com.

Launched in September, the Challenge is part of GE’s healthymagination commitment to accelerate cancer innovation by investing $1 billion in cancer technology research and development as well as improve care for 10 million cancer patients around the world by 2020. Additional strategic commercial partnership announcements from the Challenge will be made later in 2012. For additional details on the challenge, and to view the full terms and conditions visit healthymagination.com/challenge.

About GE

GE (NYSE: GE) works on things that matter. The best people and the best technologies taking on the toughest challenges. Finding solutions in energy, health and home, transportation and finance. Building, powering, moving and helping to cure the world. Not just imagining. Doing. GE works.

For more information, visit the company’s website at www.ge.com.

About GE’s healthymagination Initiative

Launched in in May 2009, GE’s healthymagination initiative is focused on four critical needs: low-cost technology; healthcare IT; innovation accessible to all; and consumer-driven healthcare. GE has committed that by 2015 it will:

  • Invest $3 billion in research and development to launch at least 100 innovations that will help deliver better care to more people at lower cost.
  • Provide $2 billion in financing and $1 billion in technology to bring healthcare information technology to rural and underserved areas.
  • Reduce the cost of procedures that use GE technologies and services by 15 percent and develop products tailored to underserved regions of the world.
  • Reach 100 million more people every year with services and technologies essential for health.

       More information can be found at www.healthymagination.com.

The ‘Little Warrior” will miss her best friend, Rev. Addie Wyatt, Labor and Civil Rights Leader

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on The ‘Little Warrior” will miss her best friend, Rev. Addie Wyatt, Labor and Civil Rights Leader

Says Wyatt was tired and wanted to “go home” to heaven


By Chinta Strausberg


Known as the “Little Warrior,” Rev. Willie Taplin Barrow, who has been friends with Rev. Addie Wyatt for the past 50-years, Thursday said she is saddened at the death of her best friend who just last week told her she was tired and wanted to “go home.”

They were a threesome in the civil rights and labor movement, and now it’s just Barrow who said she was rushing to go see her physician. “Rev. Lucille Luckett passed last year. We were a three-some. I’m just trying to get over that and now here comes Addie.

Though rushing to get to the doctor, Barrow took a few minutes to reflect on her best friend and someone she would call every day sometimes several times a day.

In reflecting on Wyatt, who passed yesterday, Barrow said, “She was 88 years-old last Sunday. I am going to miss her very much. She was the one who mentored me in the labor movement, she and (the late U.S. Rep.) Charlie Hayes and (International Secretary-Treasurer of the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees, AFSCME,) Bill Lucy out of Detroit.

“Addie was the one who brought me into the labor movement. She was the top woman in the labor movement. We fought together,” Barrow said as she took a short trip down memory lane.

Asked what was her most memorable moment with Wyatt, Barrow said, “They wouldn’t give women a real position in the labor movement and Addie had the highest position. We fought for the right places in labor. She was the first lady in my church,” she said referring to the Vernon Park Church of God, 9011 South Stony Island that was founded by Wyatt and her late husband Rev. Claude Wyatt who passed in April of 2010 also at the age of 88.

“Addie had to fight that for the women in the movement. She was a movement person. She knew Dr. King, Rosa Parks and all of those people who couldn’t stay in hotels, and now most of them are all gone,” Barrow said.

“When we were working in the movement, we depended on Josephine Wade (co-owner of Josephine’s Hardtimes Cooking Restaurant, 436 E. 79th St.,) to bring us food. She was who we depended on to feed us,” said Barrow.

Reflecting on Rev. Wyatt’s death, Barrow said, “It really hurts, but she was tired because she lost her husband. She just told me last week ‘I want to go home,’ but I told her ‘Child, I know you’re tired, but we are still here and most of our friends are gone. ‘” “Addie looked tired. After she lost Claude, she was very tired.”

When contacted, Wade said she too will miss Rev. Wyatt. It was just two-weeks ago that she asked Senator Jacqueline Collins (D-16th) to introduce a resolution for National Women’s Month to honor Wyatt, Barrow and herself.  “She deserved to be honored,” said Wade.

In reflecting back on her life with Rev. Wyatt during the civil rights movement, Wade said, “I fed them all the time. Addie was my spiritual leader, my big sister and my hero. I never heard her speak above a whisper, and I saw her in go to board members and sit on the regulation board never compromising our positions.

“She would be in excruciating pain but she would get up and go anyway. Addie was a visionary who wanted to see everybody get an equal opportunity.

“She kept our community together in every way spiritually and politically, and she was a tremendous champion during the time when black churches were being burned in the South. She was a champion for civil rights, for equal rights and right-to-work for all women. Addie began the equal rights for pay movement for women,” said Wade.

Addie never lost her composure. She never waivered and she never compromised the African American community at large. I will miss her,” said Wade.

Father Michael L. Pfleger, who has known Rev. Wyatt for decades, said he too is very sadden by her death. “ She was a friend. She was a great civil rights leader who was not afraid to put her faith to fight.

“A lot of people just speak about faith but Addie Wyatt was one of those who used her faith to fight with. Her faith was her foundation for what she believed in…. It’s not about just you getting better. To her, it was about everybody getting better.

“She was a person who really cared for all people. We don’t have a whole lot of Addie Wyatt thinking, endurance, tenacity and faith rising up today. Unfortunately, Addie Wyatt is a dying breed and she will be a great lost,” Pfleger said.

Contacted in Springfield, Senator Jacqueline Collins (D-16th) said the resolution was filed honoring women trailblazers. “It is a great loss to the nation and the city and particularly to the African American and civil rights community. She was a gifted advocate, activist and role model for all those who believe in and fight for justice, equality and freedom.” Collins said she will introduce a death resolution in honor of Wyatt.

Barrow added: “We are going to miss her.  We will miss her presence because no matter how sick she was; Addie came to church every Sunday. She never stop going right to the end….”

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com.

Photo Caption: (From left) Rev. Willie Taplin Barrow, known as “The Little Warrior,” Josephine Wade, co-owner of Josephine’s Hardtimes Cooking Restaurant, 436 E. 79th St., and Rev. Dr. Joseph Lowery who earlier spoke at Saint Sabina and later held a family reunion at Wade’s restaurant. Photo by Chinta Strausberg

The Active Transportation Alliance salutes the City of Evanston for plans to install a protected bike lane

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on The Active Transportation Alliance salutes the City of Evanston for plans to install a protected bike lane

Alliance responds to Bike Lane Announcement


Step aside Chicago the Active Transportation Alliance salutes the City of Evanston this week for announcing plans to install a protected bike lane on Church Street this summer, positioning itself as a national leader for safe streets among suburban communities.

Protected bike lanes use physical barriers or buffers between people riding bikes and motorized traffic to help riders of all ages feel more comfortable on the street. Cities across the country from New York City to Salt Lake City are installing new protected bike lanes, designed with people of all ages and riding abilities in mind, to make biking a safe and easy option for everyone. 

These communities understand that quality of life improvements such as safer streets and better transportation options are good for local businesses and property values. The City of Chicago has also committed to creating a 100-mile network of protected bike lanes by 2015 and has installed two miles to date.

Active Trans is excited to see Evanston step up as a leader in the Chicago region by making its streets safer and providing more transportation choices. Evanston is already a walkable community with great transit and bike infrastructure. The protected bike lane is another community enhancement that will improve the quality of life for those who live, work and play in Evanston.

“The City of Evanston continues its great work of making it better and safer for citizens to get around,” said Barb Cornew, north suburban coordinator for the Active Transportation Alliance. “This downtown protected bike lane will get more Evanston residents biking while making it safer for people who are walking, biking or driving.”

Whether you’re an 8-year-old child or 80-year-old grandmother, Active Trans believes you should be able to ride a bike on your community’s streets without fearing for your safety. Protected bike lanes make streets safer for everyone on the street whether walking, driving or biking by reducing conflicts on the roadway and encouraging more predictable and responsible behavior.

“This proves Evanston’s commitment to becoming a livable city,” said Chris Mailing, owner of Evanston’s Turin Bicycle shop. “Sixty percent of the population will ride a bike to work, school, or transit if it is comfortable and convenient and protected bike lanes go a long way toward that.  They encourage people to shop locally while getting exercise and reducing air pollution.  It’s a win-win for everyone.”

About: The Active Transportation Alliance is a non-profit, member-based advocacy organization that works to make bicycling, walking and public transit so safe, convenient and fun that we will achieve a significant shift from environmentally harmful, sedentary travel to clean, active travel. The organization builds a movement around active transportation, encourages physical activity, increases safety and builds a world-class transportation network. The Active Transportation Alliance is North America’s largest transportation advocacy organization, supported by nearly 7,000 members, 1,000 volunteers and 40 full-time staff. For more information on the Active Transportation Alliance, visit www.activetrans.org or call 312-427-3325.

Community Honors Mayor Harold Washington’s 90th Birthday

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on Community Honors Mayor Harold Washington’s 90th Birthday
A trip down memory lane and a Karaoke sing-a-long


By Chinta Strausberg


Chicago, IL -  We Can, Inc., a committee comprised of successful African American businessmen and women, is holding a “Here’s Harold” 90thbirthday bash in remembrance of the late Mayor Harold Washington Thursday, April 12, 2012, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Josephine’s Hardtimes Cooking Restaurant, 436 E. 79th St., Chicago, IL.

Bring your favorite pictures of Mayor Washington and share your memories of Chicago’s first African American mayor on stage and join in on the Karaoke sing-a-long for a fun-filled evening. You can even sing Washington’s favorite song “Chicago, Chicago That Toddling Town” by Frank Sinatra but hopefully on key!

The Masters of Ceremony will be NBC 5’s Emmy Award journalist Art Norman who is a fixture on WMAQ-Channel 5’s newscasts. In broadcast for 30-years, Norman is Vice President of the National Association of Black Journalists. He has his own signature segment, “Art Norman’s Chicago,” which airs bi-weekly on NBC 5 News at 5 p.m.

There will be plenty of food including: Swedish meatballs, vegetable pasta, chicken wings, ribs, cheese and fruit trays, bread, pastries.

Tickets are $25.00 per person for seniors and $50.00 for others. All are welcome.

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com.

Two-Day Exchange of Comprehensive Community Development ideas a huge success

Posted by Admin On March - 30 - 2012 Comments Off on Two-Day Exchange of Comprehensive Community Development ideas a huge success

Symposium lifts up 10 years of lessons learned from more than 800 nationwide and international community development practitioners who are making a difference in the lives of families                                                                                                       


CHICAGO, IL – After nearly a decade of practice, 800 nationwide and international community development practitioners convened in Chicago for two days to share lessons learned, assess impact and plot the course of future activity at the Institute for Comprehensive Community Development (ICCD) symposium “Getting It Done II.”

As the nation’s first think tank devoted to the study of sustainable community based urban development, ICCD presented practitioners with policy priorities, talking points and coalition partnership opportunities while offering varied sustainable community strategies that will work in the current economic and political climate.

“We gathered to share and expand on your expertise. We want to know what works, what doesn’t and what might work better if done a little differently,” said Michael Rubinger, President and CEO, Local Initiatives Support Corporation and Co-chair, ICCD Board of Advisors during his keynote introduction at the symposium.

Twenty years ago, governments and community organizations tackled the challenge of providing decent, affordable housing to low-income people primarily by focusing their efforts on individual families in need. Due to growing understanding about the effects of place on people’s lives, that approach is evolving into one that seeks to transform poor, severely distressed and segregated neighborhoods into resilient and sustainable places that integrate families and neighborhoods into the larger community.

According to Wolfgang Goede of the Munich-based Ntzwerk Gemeinsinn, the techniques of comprehensive community development is winning new attention in Europe as federal social spending declines and urban neighborhoods are increasingly left to fend for themselves.

“Germany works through bureaucracy so a lot of this is new to us,” said Goede. “It’s in the head of the people, especially in East Germany, that someone has to take care of them.”

This continental change – from federal paternalism to self-help – was one of the more revealing themes to surface at the ‘Going Global’ breakout workshop at the conference.

The Getting It  Done II symposium began with The Stampede, the Chicago Bulls drum-line, who called the symposium to order and was followed by a ‘roll call’ presenting the delegations from each nationwide site. Erika Poethig, U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), gave a keynote address describing how HUD is making neighborhood revitalization a cornerstone of their urban strategy. The afternoon was devoted to workshops and a plenary session led by Julia Stasch, Mac Arthur Foundation, on connecting neighborhoods to regional economies. Stasch was joined by Alan Berube, Brookings Institution; India Pierce Lee, Cleveland Foundation; and Raul Raymundo, Chicago’s Resurrection Project who expound on how neighborhoods connect residents, real estate and local businesses to the regional economy.

Day two began with a plenary featuring Thomas Abt, Department of Justice; Barbara Burnham, LISC; Douglass Rice, The Center for Budget and Policy Priorities; and Peter  Tatian, The Urban Institute on how to secure the assortment of resources from public and private sectors to succeed in comprehensive community development. Their discussion was followed by a riveting keynote address from syndicated columnist Clarence Page who provided an overview of the current economic and political climate – the opportunities and challenges it presents. Page’s remarks were followed by a deeper discussion about topics impacting the future of community development and a call to action.

“Affordable houses are important, but our experience teaches that a housing-centric, project-by-project approach isn’t enough. Today’s successful practitioners have a comprehensive playbook and work on many things at once,” said Rubinger. “Sharing those lessons learned of what works – and what doesn’t  in that same spirit of engagement and collaboration – allows us to reshape the ‘industry’ and the futures of the communities in which we work.”

About the ICCD: Established in April 2010 to advance the field of comprehensive community development and the positive impact it has in urban and rural communities across the country, ICCD has drawn upon the nation’s most extensive network of comprehensive community development practitioners to lift up what is working to promote best practices.

For a full list of speakers and sessions, and for more information about the Institute for Comprehensive Community Development and Getting It Done II, please visit http://www.instituteccd.org/index.html or call Marilyn Katz or Bryant Payne at 312-822-0505

Rev. Addie L. Wyatt, Labor Leader and Icon, Dead at 88

Posted by Admin On March - 29 - 2012 Comments Off on Rev. Addie L. Wyatt, Labor Leader and Icon, Dead at 88

By Chinta Strausberg

Known as a trailblazer and one of the nation’s first African American union leaders, the Rev. Addie L. Wyatt, 88, died Wednesday at Advocate Trinity Hospital two-days after she was admitted, according to one of her nursing assistants, Connie Ivy-Jones.

Reached at the home of Rev. Wyatt late last night, Ivy-Jones said Rev. Wyatt went to the hospital this past Monday and had been ill “on and off but still able to go to functions.”

One of Rev. Wyatt’s best friends, Rev. Willie Taplin Barrow, was with her at the hospital, according to Ivy-Jones. The two were inseparable and together worked on both labor and civil rights issues for decades.

Ironically, Rev. Wyatt’s husband, the late Rev. Dr. Claude Wyatt whom she married on May 12, 1940, passed in April of 2010. They had founded and both were co-pastors of the Vernon Park Church of God, 9011 South Stony Island Avenue in Chicago. They were married for 69-years and had two sons, Claude S. Wyatt and Renaldo Wyatt.

Like her husband, Rev. Wyatt, who was born on March 28, 1924 in Brookhaven, MS to Ambrose and Maggie Cameron, was a personal friend of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and. Rev. Addie Wyatt came to Chicago in 1930 when she was 6-years-old. When her mother died, Rev. Wyatt raised her siblings. Years ago, she told this writer it was an honor to raise her siblings she felt were more like her own children.

Wyatt had told this writer that she first tried out for a typist job but that she was told she failed the test; so she began working at a meat packing company in 1941 to 1953. However, once there, Rev. Wyatt was elected vice president of Local 56. She was the first African American to hold such a high labor union position.

She went on to become the director of the Women’s Affairs and Human Rights Departments of the Amalgamated Meat Cutters and in the 1960’s, Eleanor Roosevelt honored her leadership skills by appointing her to a position on the Labor Legislation Committee of the United States Commission on the Status of Women, according to Wikipedia.

But, Wyatt didn’t stop there. In the 1970’s she held a powerful position in the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, and in 1974 she founded the Coalition of Labor Union Women. Wyatt became the international vice president of the United Food and Commercial Workers in 1976. Again she was the first African American woman to hold a high union leadership position in an international union.

She and her husband always took time to give back to the community especially with their civil rights work. Dr. Addie Wyatt was ordained in 1955 as a Church of God minister. Her husband was also ordained in the same faith. Together they worked with Dr King including marching with him in the March on Washington, the march from Selma to Montgomery and other civil rights events.

Like her husband, Rev. Wyatt was one of the founders of Operation Breadbasket and a board member. She also worked very closely with the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) as an adviser. Wyatt and her husband founded the Wyatt Choral Ensemble in 1944.

Rev. Wyatt is survived by her son, Claude, and numerous grandchildren. Funeral arrangements are pending.

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com.

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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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