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Archive for October 16th, 2012

The Links, Incorporated partners with the NAACP’s “This Is My Vote!” to increase and protect voters

Posted by Admin On October - 16 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS

Washington, DC (BlackNews.com) — The Links, Incorporated is now in partnership with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People to increase voter registration, and to educate target audiences about voter suppression and other key issues that may affect the upcoming elections. A Memorandum of Understanding has just been signed by Links National President Margot James Copeland, and NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous, for the 276 chapters of The Links to utilize the resources of the NAACP campaign billed as “This Is My Vote!” in their continuing work to register and educate voters.

The Legislative Issues, Public Affairs and Disaster Relief Committee of The Links is alerting the more than 12,000 members of the organization that, in addition to the “Get Out The Vote” tool kit available for download from The Links national website, there is a direct link to the NAACP’s ThisIsMyVote.org, with additional information on voter registration, education and more.

“We want to ensure that our community, especially our students and other youth, have the opportunity and information to be fully engaged in and educated about their right to vote. Our membership is registering voters and addressing issues that might in any way keep those in our community from exercising this key American right,” said Copeland.

The Links, Incorporated has been actively engaged in increasing voter participation by historically underrepresented constituencies – including low-income Americans, Americans of color, and young voters of color. Therefore, this campaign focuses on empowering and encouraging African-American voters; newly registered voters; and eligible voters under the age of 30. The organization also addresses the barriers that may prevent these underrepresented populations from registering and voting, such as bills that require photo ID, demands for proof-of-citizenship, or the imposition of undue restrictions on community-based voter registration drives.

In the last year, more than 30 states have introduced voter suppression laws that the NAACP believes will disproportionately impact African-American voters. “We will not allow our votes to be stolen,” said Jealous. “We will work together to defend the right to vote and at the same time empower our communities to vote in all of the 2012 elections.”

This Is My Vote! is the NAACP’s series of programs and resources on voter registration, voter education and voter protection. It also provides alerts on changes in local voter laws; education on legislative matters and how they may affect communities; a national voter empowerment hotline, 1-866-MY-VOTE-1; and Election Day voter turn-out programs.
 

About The Links, Incorporated

The Links, Incorporated is a premier international volunteer service organization of women with more than 12,000 members in 276 chapters located in 42 states, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of the Bahamas. The Links, Incorporated, celebrates 65 years of enriching, sustaining and ensuring the cultural and economic survival of African Americans and other persons of African ancestry. The key programming initiatives of The Links, Incorporated are organized into five facets: Services to Youth, The Arts, National Trends and Services, International Trends and Services, and Health and Human Services. For more details, visit www.linksinc.org

 

About the NAACP

Founded in 1909, The NAACP is the nation’s oldest and largest civil rights organization. Its members throughout the United States and the world are the premier advocates for civil rights in their communities, conducting voter mobilization and monitoring equal opportunity in the public and private sectors.

MWRD, community representatives work to eliminate flooded basements, sanitary sewer overflows into area streams

Posted by Admin On October - 16 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS
Panel recommendations launch new direction for separated sewer areas; policy to implement solutions for infiltration, inflow
 
 
The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) and its community partners are working together to reduce basement back-ups and sanitary sewer overflows.
 
Even before the Illinois General Assembly granted the MWRD stormwater authority for Cook County in 2004, the agency has been working to address problems associated with weakening sewer systems in separated sewer communities. These communities have one pipe designated for stormwater and another pipe for sewage; this differs from combined sewer communities where both flow into one pipe. The predominant factors contributing to flooding in separated sewer communities is infiltration and inflow of stormwater into the sanitary sewers, overwhelming the sewer and causing “back-ups.”
 
Infiltration pertains to groundwater entering a sanitary sewer system though defective pipes, pipe joints, pipe connections and manhole walls as well as illegally connected perforated pipes, drain tiles and under-drains. Inflow refers to stormwater entering sanitary sewer systems though illegally connected roof downspouts, yard and area drains, footing/foundation drains, cooling-water discharges, drains from springs and swampy areas, leaking manhole frames and covers, and cross connections of storm and sanitary sewers. However, disconnecting these illegal connections can be expensive.
 
Because minimizing infiltration and inflow is key to efficient sewage conveyance in both the public arena and in private dwellings, corrective work in both realms is necessary. To help better understand how to assist communities with separate sanitary sewer systems, the MWRD convened an Advisory Technical Panel to seek input for the creation of a new monitoring program. The panel completed its work in July, and the results were conveyed to the MWRD Board of Commissioners in a special session held last month.
 
The goal of MWRD’s Sanitary Sewer Rehabilitation Program is to prevent both infiltration and inflow in the public realm and in private homes.  From November 2011 through July 2012, MWRD staff, local public works officials and engineers met to discuss ways in which problems could be addressed in light of new federal National Pollutant Discharge Elimination Systems (NPDES) permitting requirements, a tool used to enforce the Clean Water Act by regulating point sources that discharge pollutants into waters of the United States.
 
“Having the Advisory Technical Panel is a great starting point for the Board to consider where we need to go from here,” said Commissioner Debra Shore, chairman of the Board’s Stormwater Management committee. “We appreciate all of the time the community representatives have taken to engage in thoughtful discussion with our engineers.”
 
While local governments are challenged to maximize funding opportunities to prevent stormwater from entering sanitary sewers in the public right-of-way, individual homeowners face similar challenges. To eliminate sources of stormwater from entering sanitary sewers in private dwellings requires the disconnection of downspouts, foundation sump pumps, and driveway drain improvements on private property.
 
The MWRD Board will take the panel’s report under advisement as it works to devise reasonable solutions while educating homeowners and local leaders about ways to reduce the infiltration and inflow problem.
 
Members of the panel included:
·         Janet Pellegrini, Environmental Scientist, US EPA Region V
·         John Wiemhoff, Senior Environmental Engineer US EPA Region V
·         Jay Patel, Illinois EPA
·         Sean Dorsey, Director of Public Works, Village of Mount Prospect
·         Paul Kendzior, Village Engineer, Village of Northbrook
·         Steve Saunders, Director of  Public Works and Village Engineer, Village of Winnetka
·         Fred Vogt, Director of Public Works, City of Rolling Meadows
·         Christopher King, Robinson Engineering
·         Dale Schepers, Director of Public Works, Village of Tinley Park
·         Troy Ishler, Director, Public Works, City of Oak Forest 
·         Patrick McAneney, Director, Public Works, Village of Glenwood
·         David Weakley, Commissioner of Public Works, City of Palos Hills
·         Bill Meyer, Public Works Department (Sewers), Village of Oak Lawn
·         Mark Emory, Christopher B. Burke Engineering, Rosemont, IL 60018
·         James Goumas, Hancock Engineering, Westchester
·         Joseph Pisano, Director of Public Works, Village of Hillside
·         Ed Santen, Superintendent of Public Works, Village of Indian Head Park
·         Ross Dring, Kimberly Heights Sanitary Dist., Tinley Park
·         Mark Toll, Elk Grove Township, Daniel Creaney Company, Northbrook
·         Christopher J. Breakey, South Lyons Township Sanitary Dist., Countryside
·         Michael A. Smyth, Senior Manager, Field Services, Illinois American Water Company, Woodridge
·         Michael D. Piraino, PirTano Construction Company, Inc., Addison
·         Craig Brunner, P.E., Donohue & Associates, Inc., Chicago
·         Alan J. Hollenbeck, P.E., RJN Group, 200 West Front Street, Wheaton
·         Allan Berkner, P.E., Sewer System Evaluations, Inc., Chicago
 
More information about efforts to reduce flooding can be found at www.mwrd.org.
 

Controversial short film selected at the Hollywood Black Film Festival

Posted by Admin On October - 16 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS


Scene from Elegy for a Revolutionary

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) — In South Africa in July 1964, during a wave of raids across the country, the apartheid security police picked up several members of the African Resistance Movement (ARM), an organization of liberals-become-radicals who had sabotaged pylons and other infrastructural targets in an effort to send a message to the apartheid Government, post-Sharpeville, that serious and principled white resistance was alive in South Africa.

“While growing up in South Africa, I developed a sense of outrage at apartheid, which propelled me to become involved in student and national politics,” says Paul van Zyl, director and writer of the controversial film, Elegy for a Revolutionary, which is an official selection at the Hollywood Black Film Festival, screening October 27th at 12pm.

“Forty eight years ago in South Africa, a small group of us, mainly white, former students, dreamed that we could help topple the apartheid regime by blasting down electric pylons and radio masts. Soon after being taken into detention, one of its members began to talk. Exhaustive and gratuitously detailed testimonies, first in detention and then as a state witness, were used to convict close friends and associates.

Part memoir, part political thriller, and also a post-meditation on betrayal and forgiveness, this short film, describe the mixture of commitment and naivety, seriousness and glibness, which gave rise to the ARM organization. The story entails the “cloaks of immunity” which the group believed were granted by their whiteness. The result was their inability to believe that their band of saboteurs could be punished with the full weight of apartheid’s laws, and a fatal underestimation of the reach and skill of the Security Branch. As such, we are led to the tragic final act of the ARM story which consolidated white opinion, led directly to the demise of the Liberal Party, and strengthened the hand of the white government for more than a decade. Many of its members served jail terms or went into permanent exile. This story of the “politics of failure and betrayal” are the films themes.

The ARM movement ranks as the most pathetic and ineffectual “resistance movement” in the history of “revolutionary movements. The wretched memory of their humiliating and total failure, and their record of stabbing each other in the back, sits heavily on the hunched shoulders of its perpetrators, most of who still live in the countries to which they scuttled. The ARM didn’t do much to end apartheid. Instead, apartheid was defeated by those forces of established authority that wished to see a stable and prosperous nation.

For more details about the festival, visit www.HBFF.org

For more details about the film, visit www.elegy-movie.com

Illinois educator selected as finalist for National History Teacher of the Year

Posted by Admin On October - 16 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS

Joshua Bill of Waukegan High School one of five up for award

 

SPRINGFIELD, IL — Illinois History Teacher of the Year Joshua Bill of Waukegan has been named as one of five finalists for The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History’s 2012 National History Teacher of the Year Award. The Illinois State Board of Education is a partner in the award program, which is co-sponsored by the HISTORY channel and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation through its Preserve America program.

“We’re thrilled to share this news, though I’m sure his students are not surprised to hear that Joshua Bill is a finalist for this prestigious honor,” said State Superintendent of Education Christopher A. Koch. “Bringing history to life for students is a remarkable talent, and Joshua has clearly demonstrated he is a gifted educator.”

Joshua was named Illinois History Teacher of the Year in May after nominations were sent to the Illinois State Board of Education and a selection committee chose the Waukegan High School teacher for the honor, thus qualifying him for the national competition. Waukegan High is part of Waukegan Public School District 60, about 45 miles north of Chicago.

Joshua, who has taught at WHS since 2004, was also the recipient of the 2012 Olive Foster Outstanding Teacher Award from the Illinois State Historical Society. His accomplishments include leading his students to success at the Chicago Metro History Fair and the National History Day competition. He also serves as a coach for the We the People Simulated Congressional Hearings Competitions and mentors young teachers through his alma mater, Lake Forest College. In addition, Joshua partners with the Waukegan Historical Society, giving his students the opportunity to conduct research for projects.

The National History Teacher of the Year will be named this fall and will receive a $10,000 award and a trip, along with two of his or her students, to the national award ceremony.

“We are pleased to announce these finalists, first identified by nominations submitted from around the country, and now selected as the most remarkable in the nation from the group of 50-plus state winners,” said Lesley Herrmann, Executive Director of the Gilder Lehrman Institute. “Each of them represents the very best teaching that this country has to offer, and they should be celebrated for their accomplishments.”

The other four candidates for the 2012 National History Teacher of the Year are Ted Dickson of Providence Day School in Charlotte, N.C., Amy Perruso of Mililani High School in Hawaii, Julian Hipkins III of Capital City Public Charter School in Washington, D.C., and Jan McClaren of Claremore High School in Claremore, Okla.

The History Teacher of the Year Award alternates each year to honor K-6 teachers one year and those teaching grades 7-12 the next. Top teachers are selected at the state level and then are considered for the national award. Nominations can be made by students, parents, colleagues, supervisors or other education professionals. To be considered for the 2013 award, K-6 teachers must be nominated by Feb. 1, 2013. For more information about the nomination process for 2013, visit www.gilderlehrman.org/nhtoy.

The national winner is chosen from a pool of winners from each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, U.S. Territories, and Department of Defense Schools. Each state honoree receives $1,000 and an archive of books and resources from Gilder Lehrman and HISTORY for his or her school’s library.

The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, which was founded in 1994 by Richard Gilder and Lewis Lehrman, is a nonprofit organization devoted to the improvement of history education. Preserve America, a federal partnership program started in 2003, is led by the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation and encourages community efforts to preserve the cultural heritage of the United States, as well as associated natural resources. HISTORY offers programming on a variety of historical genres, from military history to contemporary history, technology to natural history, as well as science, archaeology and pop culture.

For the latest news from the Illinois State Board of Education, follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Illinois-State-Board-of-Education/136022251779 or Twitter at https://twitter.com/#!/ISBEnews. Visit the official ISBE website at http://www.isbe.net.

Actor Vince Vaughn makes surprise Chicago International Film Festival appearance

Posted by Admin On October - 16 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS

CHICAGO, IL –  Actor Vince Vaughn delighted attendees at the Chicago International Film Festival with a surprise appearance on Oct. 12 to support his sister Valeri Vaughn’s documentary “Art of Conflict: The Murals of Northern Ireland,” which examines how street art tells the story of Northern Ireland’s history.  Vaughn, who provides narration for the film, also participated in a post-screening question-and-answer session.  

 

The Chicago International Film Festival continues through Oct. 25. 

 

 

TICKET AND THEATER INFO

 

Tickets for the 48th Chicago International Film Festival, October 11-25, are on sale and can be purchased online at the Festival Store: http://www.chicagofilmfestival.com/catalog/;via Ticketmaster www.ticketmaster.com/chicagofilmfestival ; by phone at 312-332-FILM (3456); or by visiting the Festival box office at AMC River East 21 (322 E. Illinois St.).

 

FESTIVAL SPONSORS
Led by Presenting Partner, Columbia College Chicago, the 48th Chicago International Film Festival’s sponsors include: Official Airline – American Airlines; Producing Partners: AMC Theaters, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences; Major Partner: Intersites; Supporting Partners: DePaul University School of Cinema and Interactive Media, Stella Artois, Chris Pagano – Realtor, Land Rover, WBBM NEWSRADIO 780 AND 105.9FM, ShutterBox Photobooth, Cultivate Studios; Participating Partners: iN Demand, EC Charro Tequila, Brugal Rum, Creative America, Gibsons Restaurant Group, Second City Computers, Optimus; and the Festival’s Headquarters Hotel, JW Marriott Chicago.

   

   
ABOUT CINEMA/CHICAGO

Cinema/Chicago is a not-for-profit cultural and educational organization dedicated to encouraging better understanding between cultures and to making a positive contribution to the art form of the moving image. The Chicago International Film Festival is part of the year-round programs presented by Cinema/Chicago, which also include the International Screenings Program (May-September), the Chicago International Television Competition (April), CineYouth Festival (May), Intercom Competition (October) and year-round Education Outreach and Member Screenings Program.

 

State Senator Jacqueline Collins receives Neighborhood Hero award

Posted by Admin On October - 16 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS

Honored by Neighborhood Housing Services for work on behalf of Auburn Gresham

 

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois State Senator Jacqueline Y. Collins (D-16th) received the Neighborhood Leadership Award for her role as a “Neighborhood Hero” for Auburn Gresham. Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago (NHS) honored Sen. Collins and seven other community advocates at the nonprofit organization’s annual meeting Tuesday “for outstanding leadership in rebuilding Chicago’s neighborhoods.”

“I am deeply moved by my inclusion among tonight’s award recipients,” said Sen. Collins. “Auburn Gresham is a special place to me, and it is always an honor to represent this neighborhood and work for its residents.”

NHS, a nonprofit neighborhood revitalization organization providing loans, free homebuyer education classes, foreclosure counseling and reclamation of abandoned properties, has offices in eight neighborhoods, including Auburn Gresham and Englewood. Its members recognized Sen. Collins’ advocacy for neighborhood improvement strategies such as foreclosure prevention, bringing fresh produce to “food deserts,” promoting the upkeep of abandoned properties and taking a stand against violence.

“Neighborhood revitalization is extremely important to me, because change has to start locally,” Sen. Collins said. “It’s a privilege to work with countless people who consistently lend a hand to their neighbors and take pride in where they live.”

Lt. Governor Simon: College is a prerequisite, not a privilege

Posted by Admin On October - 16 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS

Calls for reforms to keep higher education affordable

 

CARBONDALE, IL – Illinois Lt. Governor Sheila Simon visited Southern Illinois University Carbondale to urge state, federal and higher education leaders to work together to keep college affordable so thousands of Illinois students can earn the credentials needed for good-paying jobs. This is Simon’s second stop as she holds college affordability summits with students at all 12 public universities this fall.

“To keep pace with the global economy, Illinois needs 60 percent of working-age adults to hold college credentials by 2025. To complete college, students must be able to afford college,” Simon said. “Higher education affordability must be a higher priority. College cannot be accessible only to the privileged when it is a prerequisite for a good-paying job.”

Simon supports College Choice Reports, a standardized report for all degree-granting institutions that would help students analyze real cost, debt and graduation rates across institutions. She is also serving on a state task force that could change the way need-based state grants are awarded to students as early as next school year.

The goal is to stabilize the cost for public universities and community colleges, following tuition and fee increases that have outpaced inflation, family incomes and available aid over the past 20 years. To pay the bills, students racked up an average of $26,682 in student loans in 2010, up 14.3 percent from three years earlier and more than double what they owed in 1995, according to a Pew Research Center report released in early October.

Simon emphasized the need for cooperation among state, federal and higher education leaders to prioritize the investment in higher education and the state’s future. She outlined three ways stakeholders could work together to keep college affordable:

  • Consumer protections: Simon supports House Bill 5248, which would require all degree-granting institutions that operate in Illinois to publish online College Choice Reports. The reports would contain information such as net costs, average debt and completion rates in an easy-to-read and easy-to-find format. Unlike the federally proposed “shopping sheet” which provides cost information after a student applies to a school, the College Choice Report would be available to students online before they apply, to help them find a college or university that fits their needs and their budget.
  • Targeted assistance: To better use state resources, Simon wants to strengthen the Monetary Award Program and insure MAP grants promote college attendance and completion and reduce the achievement gap between low-income and higher-income students. MAP grants are currently awarded on a first-come, first-served basis to students based on financial need, but state funding reaches only about half of eligible students. A MAP Eligibility Task Force is evaluating ways to improve distributional equity and encourage timely degree completion.
  • Tax relief for middle class families: Over 9 million students and families are taking advantage of the American Opportunity Tax Credit, saving them up to $10,000 over four years of college. Simon supports making this federal tax credit permanent and preventing it from expiring at the end of this year.

“Cutting investments directly related to economic growth doesn’t make sense. We should work together on policies that prioritize education and employment, not shortchange Illinois students and quality employers,” Simon said.

During her visit, Simon shadowed Christophe Freeman, a federal work-study recipient who works in the Trueblood Dining Hall to help pay for college expenses. Freeman, a junior majoring in cinema production, says that without financial aid, he would not be able to attend school.

“With the financial aid I receive, I can pay for tuition and some other expenses, too.” Freeman said. “My schedule is flexible, I get to work with my peers and I can walk between work and classes, so work for me really is worry-free.”

Eric Zarnikow, executive director of the Illinois Student Assistance Commission, cited recent MAP award activity as evidence that affordability should be a key issue for Illinois leaders. For every eligible student who received a MAP grant this school year, another was denied due to lack of state funds.

“MAP is one of the largest needs-based financial aid programs in the country. While approximately 150,000 students will receive an award this year, just as many will be left on the sidelines as a result of limited funding,” Zarnikow said.

“The higher education community looks forward to working with Lt. Governor Simon and state leaders to maintain and restore funding and support policies that will help more students graduate with a quality college education in a timely and cost-effective manner,” said George Reid, executive director of the Illinois Board of Higher Education.

Simon’s summit at SIU Carbondale is the first of four such visits this week. Upcoming Affordability Summits include Thursday, Oct. 18 at Illinois State University and Western Illinois University and Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville on Friday, Oct. 19.

Kaye Heidenreich, MWRD Chief of Police, lays down the law at water reclamation district

Posted by Admin On October - 16 - 2012 ADD COMMENTS
As a highly-secured wastewater utility, the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago (MWRD) devotes extensive resources to protecting MWRD equipment, properties and people based on recommendations provided by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. MWRD’s Chief of Police Kaye Heidenreich leads the public safety effort and recently completed  Northwestern University’s Center for Public Safety Executive Management Program (EMP).
Chief Heidenreich was raised in Bridgeview, graduated from Oak Lawn Community High School in 1981 and lives in Chicago. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from St. Xavier University in Chicago in May 1999, and she graduated from University of Illinois at Chicago in May 2002 with a Masters Degree in Public Administration.
Chief Heidenreich began her pursuit of a career in public safety by becoming an MWRD Police Officer in Sept. 1996. She was promoted to Police Sergeant in June 1998, then was promoted again to Chief of Police in April 2007. She completed coursework in Staff and Command in March 2002 at Northwestern University’s Center for Public Safety, and more recently, completed Northwestern’s EMP program. The EMP provides intensive instruction for policy making executives and combines management principles with the study of emerging law enforcement issues.
Chief Heidenreich manages 48 staff members, which includes police officers, sergeants, lieutenants and administrative staff. Her main role is to oversee the protection of the MWRD’s citizens, employees and assets while ensuring her staff is trained in best management and legal practices. She oversees the arrest of offenders on MWRD property and works with the Circuit Courts of Cook County.  She also works with federal, state, county and other local law enforcement jurisdictions on criminal enforcement issues to ensure the protection of the MWRD’s critical infrastructure.
Chief Heidenreich has enjoyed her career in law enforcement.
“I chose policing to be able to make a difference in the community and to help people,” Chief Heidenreich said.  “I enjoy being an advocate for the service we provide for taxpayers and citizens. When I interact with large groups of people at town hall meetings or events, it is an opportunity to let the public know that we are there and can offer assistance for many of their problems.”

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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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