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December , 2018
Thursday

By Chinta Strausberg   Memorial services for Carol Ann Winn, 61, who passed on May 7, 2012 ...
WASHINGTON, DC – President Barack Obama announced his intent to appoint the following individuals ...
This event is a collaborative and supportive effort by PETAL et al., in conjunction with Team ...
CHICAGO, IL -- On Friday, April 5, Chicago Detours inaugurates their new quarterly, one-off "Detours" ...
23rd Annual C.F. Stradford awards ceremony honors a judge and radio executive    In recognition of ...
Soap Box Rants/A WEEKLY COLUMN By Pamela Bratcher-McMillan, President, Chair & CEO, PETAL et al. ...
The impact of today’s vote by the U.S. House will be devastating. More than a ...
Misclassification, Personal Liability Laws Also Help Taxpayers CHICAGO, IL – A new law ...
Their stories vary.  But many times they have something in common: They’ve been harassed or ...
  Record-Breaking Property Tax Hike “Underlines the Need for Mayoral Term Limits and a Full-Time Consumer ...

Archive for March 6th, 2013

National Coalition of 100 Black Women: Sequestration Is not the best solution!

Posted by Newsroom On March - 6 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

The National Coalition of 100 Black Women (NCBW) is concerned about the national “sequester” that went into effect on March 1, 2013. Sequestration is not the solution,” said NCBW national president M. Delois Strum.

 

Sequestration is a set of automatic across the board spending cuts put into law by the Budget Control Act to apply pressure on Congress to come up with a longer term plan for deficit reduction. However, “sequestration as a strategy will not effectively reduce the national deficit or effectively address our country’s financial issues,” said Sherese Brewington-Carr, NCBW public policy liaison. “Regrettably it will reduce human potential and adversely impact all communities, particularly African American and other communities of color. These communities already continue to struggle during this country’s economic recovery,” she said.

 

According to Strum, “our constituency, who currently has one of the highest unemployment rates, will be subjected to additional job loss, loss of revenue and salary earnings due to furloughs and layoffs and, in the case of unemployment insurance, will face reductions at approximately $400.00 per person.”

 

“We are aware of expected cuts to Title I that will reduce early education opportunities for our most vulnerable citizens and our country’s greatest hope for the future — our children. We regard education as a basic civil right and foundation for early childhood development,” said Strum.

 

According to official testimony and letters from all impacted government agency cabinet heads and secretaries to the U. S. Committee on Appropriations, cuts will apply to the Employment and Training budgets, Workforce Investment Acts, Wagner- Peyser funds and the Office of Job Corps that provide much needed job training to develop America’s workforce. The Department of Justice will experience personnel cuts that could impact safety, as well as cuts to Violence Prevention and Protection programs for women and to Public Health Centers that provide much needed community based healthcare, resulting in less services for the sick.

 

“Our leaders failed to avert this sequestration catastrophe, but they can still reach a compromise going forward,” said Strum. “There must be other solutions and we must individually and collectively insist that our national leaders work together to find those alternative solutions that do not punish our most vulnerable citizens,” she said.

 

The National Coalition of 100 Black Women is an advocacy group for African American women. With sixty-three chartered chapters across the country and a core mission focus in the areas of Health, Education, and Economic Empowerment through our strategic alliances and partnerships, we are intentional about positively impacting the lives of our constituents: African American women and girls.

 

 

Attorney General Madigan: 2012 consumer debt complaints signal continued economic uncertainty, financial struggles

Posted by Newsroom On March - 6 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Student loan debt makes first appearance on Top 10 List of Complaints  

 

CHICAGO, IL — Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan released her annual top 10 list of consumer complaints for 2012 in recognition of National Consumer Protection Week.

Madigan’s Consumer Protection Division received 26,316 complaints in 2012. Consumer debt was the top concern among Illinoisans for the fifth consecutive year, reinforcing the financial challenges that continue to plague Illinois residents amid economic uncertainty.

“Every year we hear from thousands of people who’ve found themselves on the wrong end of a deal,” Madigan said. “It’s now more evident than ever that even the most commonplace financial transactions have become complex and fraught with risks, putting the burden on consumers to arm themselves with as much information as they can before they sign on any dotted lines.”

The consumer debt category, including complaints about residential mortgage lending, debt collections and credit cards, grew by more than 29 percent over the previous year and comprised nearly a third of all consumer complaints reported to Madigan’s office in 2012. The year-to-year increase can partly be attributed to a marked rise in residential lending complaints. Many of these complaints were filed in conjunction with the $25 billion national mortgage foreclosure settlement with the nation’s five largest bank servicers over allegations of widespread “robo-signing” other fraudulent mortgage servicing practices. More than 20,000 Illinois borrowers have received approximately $1.44 billion in relief since the settlement’s February 2012 announcement.

For-Profit College Complaints Sign of Growing Debt Trend

This year’s list also included the first-ever complaint category against schools, including for-profit colleges. Madigan’s office recorded more than 1,300 complaints about schools operating in Illinois. Nearly 95 percent of those complaints regarded unfair and misleading practices employed by for-profit colleges, including deceptive lending practices that have made for-profit college students in Illinois part of a growing generation of Americans trapped in a lifetime of financial insecurity. Americans now owe more than $1 trillion in student loans, while student loan debt has surpassed credit cards as the largest source of unsecured consumer debt, according to the U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

In 2012, Madigan filed a lawsuit against the national for-profit school Westwood College, alleging Westwood left many students with anywhere from $50,000 to $70,000 in debt for degrees that failed to qualify them for careers in criminal justice. The lawsuit alleges that Westwood downplayed the ultimate cost of attending the college and failed to provide students with sufficient information about their loans.

“This year marks the first time that student loan issues and for-profit colleges are among the top concerns for Illinois residents, and it’s no wonder given the lengths we’ve seen some for-profit operators go to boost their bottom line, even when it has meant destroying their students’ financial future,” Madigan said.

In an effort to raise awareness about the for-profit schools industry, Madigan today released “A Primer on For-Profit Colleges,” a resource to educate students on issues of accreditation, financial aid, job placement rates and important questions to ask before enrolling in a college.

Madigan has been an outspoken critic of the for-profit schools industry. Last year, she testified before Congress and penned a letter to Congressional leaders on the mounting concerns in the for-profit schools industry. Also in 2012, Madigan settled a national lawsuit with the company behind www.GIbill.com for deceptively steering U.S. service members and veterans to use their federal education benefits with the company’s preferred clients in the for-profit schools industry.

Top 10 Breakdown

The Attorney General recognized National Consumer Protection Week with Steven Baker, Midwest director for the Federal Trade Commission, Steve Bernas, president and CEO of the Chicago area Better Business Bureau and Tom Brady, inspector in charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service’s Chicago Division.

In addition to consumer debt and school-related complaints, Madigan noted other categories that topped her list of complaints involved identity theft, telecommunications and home repair:

CATEGORY

# OF COMPLAINTS

1. Consumer Debt (mortgage lending, debt collections, credit cards) 7,631
2. Identity Theft (fraudulent credit cards and utility accounts, bank fraud) 2,544
3. Telecommunications (wireless service, local phone service, cable/satellite) 2,240
4. Construction/Home Improvement (remodeling, roofs/gutters) 1,926
5. Schools (for-profit, trade, universities, higher education) 1,347
6. Motor Vehicles/Used Auto Sales (as-is sales, financing, warranties) 1,173
7. Promotions & Schemes (sweepstakes, pyramid, work-at home scams) 1,113
8. Fraud Against Business (consulting, directories/publications) 900
9. Mail Order (Internet purchases, catalog ordering, television/radio) 864
10. Motor Vehicle/Non-Warranty Repair (collision/body, engines) 607

For more information, visit Madigan’s website, www.illinoisattorneygeneral.gov, or contact her range of hotlines about issues ranging from home foreclosure to identity theft:

Consumer Fraud Hotline: 1-800-386-5438 (Chicago), 1-800-243-0618 (Springfield) or 1-800-243-0607 (Carbondale)

Spanish Language Hotline: 1-866-310-8398

Identity Theft Hotline: 1-866-999-5630

Homeowner Helpline: 1-866-544-7151

Leaders move to end voting at schools, protect students

Posted by Newsroom On March - 6 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

 

Topinka, Franks & Bivins join law enforcement in announcing legislation

 

SPRINGFIELD, IL  – Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka, State Rep. Jack Franks and State Senator Tim Bivins joined the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police and other law enforcement leaders in announcing legislation that would remove polling places from public and private schools, and ultimately protect students.

Planned legislation amends the state Election Code and state School Code by eliminating public and private schools as voting site options and striking language that requires School Districts to make buildings available as polling places.

“This is a common-sense step that puts students first,” Topinka said. “There is no reason to have members of the public strolling through school parking lots and entering buildings where classes are being held. There are government buildings, churches and other polling place locations that do not put students at risk or disrupt the school day, let’s utilize them instead.”

Safety concerns have prompted communities in Illinois, and across the country, to rethink school polling locations. In addition, lawmakers in Indiana, New York and Virginia are considering statewide bans on voting at schools. Legislation introduced in New Jersey would require schools that serve as polling places to have a written security plan.

“As schools across the country reassess security measures, it makes sense for the state to eliminate this potential threat to students,” Franks said. “We’re talking about hundreds, even thousands, of people walking on school grounds, going into school buildings and potentially coming into contact with our students. It is an unnecessary risk that we should no longer take.”

On Tuesday, law enforcement leaders stood with Topinka, Franks and Bivins in announcing the proposed change. Representatives from the Police Benevolent and Protective Association, the Illinois Chiefs of Police Association and several Police and Sheriff’s Departments were unified in their support of the new legislation.

“As the Chief Law Enforcement Officer for the Village of Riverside it’s my duty and obligation to prepare for the worst – and to prevent it, if possible,” Village of Riverside Police Chief Tom Weitzel said. “School administrators are already hiring officers to work security details at schools throughout Illinois during the next election. We can do even better by removing the polling places sites completely.”

Black Enterprise holds Symposium on America’s public education challenges

Posted by Newsroom On March - 6 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

“Today’s Business Crisis: Educating Tomorrow’s Workforce,” is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Orlando, FL (BlackNews.com) — Black Enterprise, with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, presented “Today’s Business Crisis: Educating Tomorrow’s Workforce,” Thursday. The symposium and featured dinner was part of the Black Enterprise signature event, Women of Power, where more than a thousand leading African American women from across the nation met to rejuvenate and discuss their business, career, life and family challenges and solutions.

“This was the perfect venue,” says Sonia Alleyne, Black Enterprise Multimedia Editorial Director, Co-Editorial Director, Women of Power Summit. “We’re on the cutting edge and forefront for African Americans to meet today’s challenges and we must guarantee the next generation of powerful women is prepared academically for success.”

The Gates Foundation was a sponsor of the event, which was created by Black Enterprise to cultivate a conversation between top leaders in business, philanthropy and education about the critical challenges facing American education. The symposium analyzed and illustrated the role business leaders can play in education reform in Florida and in public schools across the nation. “By increasing the quality of education, we increase the quality of our workforce,” says Heather Hiles, Founder & CEO, Pathbrite, Inc.

Moderator: Sonia Alleyne, Black Enterprise Multimedia Editorial Dir./Co-Editorial Dir., Women of Power Summit

Speakers Included:

* Tracye H. Brown, Director of Communications & Project Manager, Empowering Effective Teaching, Hillsborough County Public Schools/Tampa, Florida

* Felecia Cummings Smith, Associate Commissioner of Education, State of Kentucky

* Heather Hiles, Founder & CEO, Pathbrite, Inc.

* Suzanne Walsh, Senior Program Officer, Postsecondary Success, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

“It is imperative that business leaders join forces with the academic community ensuring our schools are competitive,” says Black Enterprise CEO Earl “Butch” Graves Jr. “Black Enterprise has consistently sounded the call to address this crisis as the system even more egregiously fails the children it’s charged with educating and preparing for productive lives. If we are to have a strong workforce; we must have strong schools. We are proud to have the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to increase the focus on solutions that can ultimately resolve this crisis, solutions that cannot be successfully executed without business leaders being fully committed to reform public education.” The Gates Foundation is committed to ensuring all students in America have access to a great education.

BLACK ENTERPRISE is the premier business, investing, and wealth-building resource for African Americans. Since 1970, BE has provided essential business information and advice to professionals, corporate executives, entrepreneurs, and decision makers. Every month, BLACK ENTERPRISE magazine provides 4.1 million readers with information on entrepreneurship, careers, and financial management. A multimedia company, BE also produces television programming, business and lifestyle events, Web content, and digital media. BLACK ENTERPRISE is the definitive source of information for and about African American business markets and leaders, and the authority on black business news and trends.

Photo Caption: 

Panelists address questions from the audience. Moderator Sonia Alleyne, Black Enterprise Editor engaged Tracye Brown, Hillsborough County Public Schools, Felecia Cummings Smith, State of Kentucky; Heather Hiles, Pathbrite in a discussion. Suzanne Walsh, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation open the program.

 

 

 

Swindled taxpayers have options says the Better Business Bureau

Posted by Newsroom On March - 6 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

 

From the Better Business Bureau

 

 

CHICAGO, IL -  Becoming a victim of a “too good to be true offer” does not necessarily mean that all is lost. The Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois (BBB) is aware that some taxpayers may have experienced losses in certain investment arrangements discovered to be criminally fraudulent. Often these investments turn out to be “Ponzi Schemes” where investors lose because there are no real profits to be had.

 

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has a revenue procedure that provides an optional safe harbor treatment for taxpayers who experienced losses in certain investment arrangements discovered to be criminally fraudulent. It also describes how the IRS will treat a return that claims a deduction for such a loss but does not use the safe harbor treatment as described in this revenue procedure. Taxpayers claiming a loss are instructed to mark “Revenue Procedure 2009-20” at the top of the Form 4684.

 

“It is devastating when someone falls victim to a fraudulent investment scheme,” said Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau of Chicago and Northern Illinois. “It is important to be proactive before making a decision, but also to make sure that everything in your power is done to clean up the damage after.”

 

The BBB offers these tips for someone looking for a legitimate investment.

  • Don’t invest with someone just because your friends/colleagues/associates do. There’s no guarantee that they’ve done their homework about an investment. Furthermore, if the seller is part of that group, it’s likely everyone trusts this person and subsequently do not check into their past or their investments.
  • Be aware of anyone who claims to be able to bring back a return above the market rate. This promise of a large return is alluring, but a red flag that something is not right. Do not trust anyone who claims to have a different or “special” way of making things happen.
  • Find out as much as you can. Investing your hard earned money is not something you should take lightly. Ask questions and find out fully where you are putting your money. Be open to references as well doing your own research. Check out Business Reviews with the Better Business Bureau.
  • Get as much information as possible in writing. Be sure to get details of the offer, names of validating organizations, the organization’s own research documentation, and copies of any contracts you will be asked to sign.
  • Consult an unbiased third party. Look for an unconnected broker or licensed financial advisor before investing, research the advisor or broker through business reviews at www.bbb.org

 

For additional consumer safety tips, visit www.bbb.org

Top women executives in transportation to be honored at “Celebrating Women Who Move The Nation”

Posted by Newsroom On March - 6 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

 

U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth to receive Lifetime Achievement Award

           

 

 

WASHINGTON, DC – Ten women representing all modes of the global transportation industry will receive top honors from the Conference Of Minority Transportation Officials (COMTO) during the annual Celebrating Women Who Move the Nation (CWWMN) awards breakfast. Honorary Chairman is former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta.

           

The Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to Iraq war veteran and Purple Heart recipient Rep. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL). She is a U.S. Army Black Hawk helicopter pilot who suffered severe combat wounds, losing both her legs and damaging her right arm.

           

 In addition to Congresswoman Duckworth, the other CWWMN honorees and the transportation modes they represent include: Gina Adams, from FedEx for the Private Sector; Rosemarie Andolino, from the Chicago Department of Aviation for the Aviation Sector; Anne Canby, from OneRail Coalition for the Advocacy Sector; Gloria Jeff, formerly from the Michigan Department of Transportation for the Highway Sector; Joan McDonald, from the State of New York Department of Transportation for the State Government Sector; Cheryl McKissack Daniel, and Deryl McKissack, from the McKissack & McKissack companies for the Private Sector; and Therese McMillan, from the Federal Transit Administration at the U.S. Department of Transportation for the Federal Government Sector. Helen Dale, special assistant and strategic coordinator to the Director of Human Resources at the Maryland Transportation Authority, will receive the Shirley DeLibero Award.

 

The controversy over Chicago State University president: Is this the same Wayne Watson that ousted Probation Challenge from the City Colleges of Chicago?

Posted by Newsroom On March - 6 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

By Rev. Harold E. Bailey

Founder and President of Probation Challenge, Inc. & The PCC Network

 

CHICAGO, IL – Wayne Watson, once Chancellor of City Colleges of Chicago, now stands at the center of controversy as president of Chicago State University.

One of Watson’s many issues is that of stepping down from his $250.000 annual salary for a sabbatical. But there are some people that have long memories, and they view this matter as “reaping what was sown.”

During Watson’s tenure as Chancellor of City Colleges of Chicago, he removed a respected education program – Probation Challenge – from Olive-Harvey College’s agenda. This program was a means to help ex-offenders through education and training, put them back on the right track and become contributing citizens. It was the first state educational court mandated program of its kind in the country which gave ex-offenders a choice – education or jail/prison.

After the death of the late Justice R. Eugene Pincham in April, 2008, the overseer of the noted and well-respected  program which had only a low 5% recidivism rate, Probation Challenge received a notice to vacate the building it had occupied on the Olive-Harvey College Campus for 27-years without a hint of scandal. By law, this was an illegal eviction.

The forced closing of the Illinois State Statue program caused youth to return to the streets and back to their past behavior of street crime.

Many city and state officials have noted that returning clients of the program to the streets, which were kept pretty much under wrap with Bailey’s program, is now noted as violence out of control. Youth lost hope and lacked Bailey’s parental leadership. Bailey was a father figure to many students and without him many would not have received grants and scholarships. These youth who many said could not and would not make it… were turned back into society as taxpayers and not tax burdens.

Probation Challenge has received accolades from around the world for its successful work with the many youth who were rejected by society.

City Colleges of Chicago for many years, under the auspices of Wayne Watson, caused hardship to the program’s founder the Rev. Harold E. Bailey, who during his 27-year stay on the Olive-Harvey College Campus – only received two-years of salary from the college administration. But Bailey, with a love for justice and his many clients, remained and survived by way of grants and money from his own savings.

After the program was ousted from the campus, an appeal was made to then Mayor Richard M. Daley, but he never responded to the request! Watson never gave a warning of his efforts to put the program’s clients back into the streets, but waited until the eve of Justice Pincham’s demise to serve notice.

Watson stated that the building was promised to a drug company. To this date, the building remains vacant.

Bailey said, “Watson has to answer to God for his stewardship in this matter, for these state-mandated youth were not mine, but God’s children”.

Bailey said that the youth have caused havoc on the city without any consideration from city officials.

Subsequently, Bailey sued City Colleges of Chicago for its continued use of his Probation Challenge name which was used for a year after he vacated the scene…he won the case.

Rev. Harold E. Bailey, founder and president of Probation Challenge, Inc. and The PCC Network: WWW.ProbationChallenge.org – The Truth Network.

Saint Sabina’s Peacemaker’s Red Team wins championship game

Posted by Newsroom On March - 6 - 2013 ADD COMMENTS

Games to resume in April

By Chinta Strausberg

 

In an aggressive, heart-stopping basketball game, Saint Sabina’s Peacemaker’s Red Team won the season’s championship game late Monday night by a score of 38 to 37 and even Mayor Rahm Emanuel showed up to watch the spirited and very aggressively played game.

It was the Red Team vs. the Black Team, and no one really knew which would win. Both teams raced back and forth on the Saint Sabina’s ARK gym each trying to out-strategize the other. Once arch enemies, they have laid down their guns and are now shooting hoops of peace.

In the end and when the free throws were over and calls of foul ended, the Red Team became the official winner of the Peacemakers playoff games that began on September 15, 2012 when Father Michael L. Pfleger struck an historic peace accord among four rival gangs in the Auburn Gresham community.

On September 22, 2012, Pfleger held the first Peacemaker’s basketball tournament, which sparked a weekly Monday night game for youth in the community. According to Father Pfleger, since September 15, 2012, there has not been one shooting committed by anyone in the four gangs, and he is very proud of that.

Those weekly non-violence marches he held with the Saint Sabina Faith Community and supporters where he reached out to gangbangers showing his love and offering them free education and jobs, ultimately paid off, but it wasn’t easy.

Last year when the marches began, initially when the gang members saw Pfleger coming, they would run; so Pfleger changed strategies.

He brought in celebrities and NBA players like Orlando’s Quentin Richardson, Chicago Bulls Joakim Noah, NBA super legend Isiah Thomas; Chicago Bears’ J’Marcus Webb; L.A. Clipper’s Bobby Simmons, Memphis Grizzlies; Zach Randolph; Simeon’s Jabari Parker and the award-winning documentary star, Kobe Williams.

It worked. Rather than run from Father Pfleger, the gang members began to go to him, and the popular priest finally won their trust and respect. One night when one of the basketball stars accompanied Pfleger, two members left the huddle of youth surrounding them but came back.

That Sunday, Pfleger, with tears in his eyes, announced that those two youth had been ordered to kill another gang member who unaware was at a liquor store. The two assigned assassins hid their guns and came back to meet the NBA player.

Two other youths went and got the intended target thus preventing his murder. And, along the way during those weekly marches, Pfleger closed down the M&M Food Mart, 1642 W. 79th St., that was allegedly the headquarters for gangs but also where the storeowner, who threatened to sue the priest and boasted he had 1,000 Arab merchants ready to take him on, sold cigarettes to minors.

Father Pfleger, who has a holistic approach to fighting violence, also served notice to all stores in that community that if they didn’t hire a black from the community, he would target them for protests. He had them to sign a “Community Agreement” form.

Monday night’s championship was the sweet ending to a long hot summer and a sealer to one of the hardest battles Father Pfleger has ever taken on and won for it wasn’t just the Red Team that won. The entire Auburn Gresham community and the city of Chicago also are beneficiaries of the Peacemakers and their commitment to honor Father Pfleger’s peace accord and in so doing they have regained their own respect in this city and along law enforcement personnel.

Pfleger told reporters, “Once they get to know each other by names and bring them together to form a relationship all of a sudden the rival barriers start to come down…. That is what we have to break down.” “Nothing would have happened without these guys wanting to do it, wanted to change…”

Pfleger said the players “have so much talent” and that the community “is missing their gifts out here. We need their gifts.  We need their leadership. We need their skills.” Pfleger said he is proud to “dust the off their dreams and help them achieve their purpose. That’s where it’s at.”

Father Pfleger told this reporter, “This is great, but the real championship is not just tonight. The championship has been what these guys have been doing every single day for the last 12-weeks. The peace they’ve kept, the relations they’ve built, they have never been a problem in here for 12-weeks, never been a problem for these brothers on the streets for 12-weeks. They are the champions.” Pfleger said they are taking a break but will resume in April.

Senator Jacqueline Collins (D-16th) said Monday night’s championship game is a celebration of the “willingness and the encouragement that this gives other children in the community on coming together and building relationships around a sport and where they don’t take out their anger on each other. The tension is released in the game but sportsmanship is a cornerstone of basketball. They release the anger and the tension, but it’s in an atmosphere where it is acceptable and they uphold the standards of good sportsmanship.”

Cory Hughes, a member of the Red Team, said, “My team came in. It’s an amazing feeling. It’s been a good tournament. Everybody wanted us to lose. It just feels good. We’ve been beating everybody. We only lost one game.”

Another Red Team member, Aaron Ageeneam, said, “We worked on this. Our coach got us back together and everybody played their part and we won. This is a great thing because you can’t do this in certain neighborhoods, but this peace tournament put everybody together and showed another side that players from different areas may be cool people to meet on the basketball court. Some of these people didn’t like each other before the tournament….”

John Johnson, another Red Team member, said they stayed together and continued to play hard. “The tournament kept the kids off the street. I enjoyed it.”

Agreeing was Michael Tyner, 19, said the game “helped for me to stay in shape and it gives some of the young guys to come off the street and come together in the tournament. They helped us get jobs; so it wasn’t just about playing basketball.”

Tina Wallace, a member of Saint Sabina, was the cheerleader for the game. “I love the game, and I’m very happy that we started it. It started a worldwide peace thing. Everybody is starting to look at it, and I love it.”

Interviewed during the game, Rochelle Crump, a consultant for the ARK, and Helen Dumas, principal of the Saint Sabina Academy, were rooting for the Red Team. Marina Lopez, who has never been to one of the games, said the players were “awesome and amazing.”

But, not everyone was happy about the outcome of the game. A father of one, Terrence Henderson, 28, who was rooting for the Black Team, said he is disappointed that his team lost. I don’t like losing, but it’s been a great thing going on in the community.

“My hats go out to Father Pfleger…to the mayor for giving us the jobs. If more things like that going on, then Chicago wouldn’t be on CNN talking about 500 murders a year. We got to come together as a city and stop all of that. We need to do more things like this.”

While Henderson was fussing about his team losing, Father Pfleger came over and hugged him saying, “You know I love you.” Henderson said, “Yeah, but my team lost.” Henderson said he was OK and stopped fussing about the failure of his team to bring home the championship. They will have another chance come April when the weekly games resume.

In the interim, Father Pfleger will keep close tabs on them and will continue to find them jobs, provide a free education and other social needs they may have. He is very proud of their keeping the peace in the community and again said, “They are the real champions.”

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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