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Archive for September 6th, 2013

Anti-War Activists Rally to Tell Congress to Vote No on War with Syria!

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Anti-War Activists Rally to Tell Congress to Vote No on War with Syria!


Rally will be held Saturday at the Federal Plaza in Chicago, 50 W. Adams, at 12:00 Noon


Although only 9% of the public have expressed support for war with Syria in opinion polls, preparations for war are moving ahead.  Anti-war activists in Illinois have been working around the clock to get their “Vote No” message to their legislators.

Opposition is coming from many communities and social groups.  Faith based activists, activists from the African American community, parents involved in the struggle to save their children’s schools from closure, and trade unionists are speaking out.

On Saturday, many of these groups will come together for a march and rally to Tell Congress:  Vote No on War with Syria! The rally will be held Saturday, September 7th, 2013, 12:00 Noon, at the Federal Plaza, 50 W. Adams, in Chicago

Joe Iosbaker, an activist with the Anti-War Committee – Chicago, and one of the main organizers of the massive march on the NATO Summit last year, said, “We have an opportunity to stop this war before it starts.  Congress reconvenes next Monday, and there’s a real sense of urgency in the movement to get as many people as possible to speak out against a war on Syria.”

Dr. Matar Matar of the Syrian American Forum, explained, “The White House and Pentagon are preparing to attack Syria with cruise missiles.  I am very worried about the Unity of Syria, the number of casualties, and refugees who will flee the country, and I am really worried about the kind of weapons will be used by the US during these attacks, such as enriched uranium or white phosphorus such as in Iraq, and the long term consequences of using such a weapons.  The Senate is calling for 90 days of war by the American military even though they know that most Americans are against this war.  We are asking for people of conscience to say to their representatives:  war is not the answer.”

Sponsoring groups:  Anti-War Committee – Chicago; Syrian American Forum; ANSWER – Chicago; U.S. Palestinian Community Network – Chicago; American Friends Service Committee; Iraq Veterans Against the War – Chicago; American Party of Labor; March 19th Anti-War Coalition; Northwest Indiana Veterans for Peace; Palestine Solidarity Group – Chicago; Gay Liberation Network; Albany Park, North Park, Mayfair Neighbors for Peace and Justice; 8th Day Center for Justice; Neighbors for Peace; Pakistan Federation of America; International Socialist Organization; Chicago Area Peace Action; Oak Park Coalition for Truth and Justice; AFSCME Local 2858; North Shore Coalition for Peace, Justice and the Environment; Near West Citizens for Peace and Justice; Nicaragua Solidarity Committee; Alliance for Global Justice; and Chicago Faith Coalition on Middle East Policy.

Serial rapist sentenced to 75 years in prison

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Serial rapist sentenced to 75 years in prison

A convicted rapist who attacked and sexually assaulted three Chicago women after he was released from prison in 2009 has been sentenced to 75 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections, Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez announced today.

Julius Anderson, 63, received the 75-year term in connection with three attacks dating back to August and September of 2009. Anderson had previous convictions for sexual assault and armed robbery in 1973, and two sexual assault and armed robbery convictions in 1977. He had spent more than 30 years in prison and was released on parole from the Illinois Department of Corrections on June 25, 2009 to a half-way house in Chicago’s Bucktown neighborhood, where he committed the three sexual assaults just months after his release.

Anderson was ultimately convicted on multiple charges of Attempted Home Invasion, Aggravated Criminal Sexual Abuse and Attempted Criminal Sexual Assault in connection with the three attacks. In all three of the incidents, Anderson approached the victims from behind and threatened to kill them if they did not comply with his demands.

“We are extremely grateful for and applaud the sentence in this case because it will ensure that this violent predator will never again walk the streets of Chicago to prey on innocent women,” Alvarez said.

In the first attack, which occurred in the early morning hours on Aug. 15, 2009, prosecutors said a 25-year-old victim was held at knife point and forced into a gangway where she was sexually assaulted by Anderson. The second attack occurred three days later on Aug. 18, when Anderson assaulted and choked a 28-year-old woman and forced his way into her apartment. Prosecutors said once inside the apartment, Anderson restrained the victim with nylon cord, removed her clothes and fondled her before tying a cord around her neck and telling her she was going to die before fleeing the apartment.

According to prosecutors, the third attack occurred on Sept. 1 when Anderson attacked a 28-year-old woman as she entered her Bucktown apartment and pushed his way in behind her. After entering the apartment, Anderson forced the victim into the rear bedroom and bound her wrists with electrical tape. He then removed her clothes with a knife, cutting her breast in the process. Anderson then attempted to sexually assault the victim before stealing several items from the apartment and fleeing the scene.

Cook County Judge Charles Burns sentenced Anderson to the 75 year prison term during a hearing at the Leighton Criminal Courts Building in Chicago. State’s Attorney Alvarez thanked Chicago Police Department Detectives and Assistant State’s Attorney Jennifer Gonzalez for their dedicated work on the case.

Will There Ever Be Another Anyone? We Still Enjoy the Music of the Jackson 5, Prince, Lionel Ritchie, Chaka Khan, and Sade

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Will There Ever Be Another Anyone? We Still Enjoy the Music of the Jackson 5, Prince, Lionel Ritchie, Chaka Khan, and Sade

Soap Box Rants

By Pamela Bratcher-McMillan President, Chair & CEO, of PETAL et al.

I was talking to a friend the other day while she was listening to some Jackson 5 tunes. They sounded good…brought back a lot of good and fond memories. Yes, I remember – as many of you do, the Jackson 5 long before Michael Jackson decided to go solo. And as talented as Michael Jackson was, I still preferred the music done by him and his brothers before he went it alone. That’s probably because I preferred soul music to Pop music. There is also magic when a certain group of people come together to produce heartfelt music – from the very core of their being the type music with people they love and trust. Three of the Jackson brothers sang, and two played instruments. And when they pulled it all together, it was awesome. Can you think of anything that came later that was better than “I Don’t Know Why I Love You,” “Corner in the Sky,” and “Who’s Loving You?”

And let’s not forget Lionel Ritchie when he was with the Commodores. As successful as his pop career rose in stature, it never quite hit the note to produce the wonderful feel it did when he was with the Commodores. I missed the synergy and electricity they produced when they performed together. It was never the same afterwards. Really…did anything top” Zoom” and “This is Your Life? I don’t think so.

Chaka Khan and Rufus…Oh my goodness…What a group! When I first heard “Everlasting Love,” Chaka and Rufus had an everlasting fan. When that group broke up, it was a sad day. Once again, the chemistry they produced when they came together was often emulated, but never duplicated. I did like “Through the Fire” so I can move on.

Sade released “Soldier of Love” a couple of years ago after being out of the public eye for a while, but it was like she never left. Sold out concerts reminded us her fans looked forward to reliving past moments together. The music, her performance, everything was tight. Could it be because she’s still with the musicians she used before taking a hiatus?

When I hear people say there will never be another Michael Jackson, I always think, what about Prince? He always manages to keep his youthful look and make memorable comebacks and he’s had several bands. Did it affect what he does? I’m not sure. What do you think? Here is this multi-talented guy that can not only belt out some great tunes like “Beautiful Ones” and “Diamonds and Pearls,” he also has some sweet dance moves and plays every instrument on the stage very well. From guitar to piano to drums, etc., how many people can pull that off? The passion cannot be denied. He is definitely in it for the music. Could this be the missing link? The music behind the voice is as important as the voice. And when they work in harmony with each other beautiful things happen. Prince is the voice and the music. Maybe that is his advantage.

The bottom line is there will never be another anyone. We are all unique in our own way. We are on this planet with talents and gifts. It is up to us to develop those talents, share those gifts, and make ourselves seen if that is what we so desire.

Pamela Bratcher-McMillan is a technology Expert and President, Chair & CEO, of PETAL et al. She is also a weekly columnist for CopyLine Magazine

Better Business Bureau Urging Students to Prevent Identity Theft

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Better Business Bureau Urging Students to Prevent Identity Theft

CHICAGO, IL – College students need to carefully protect their personal information states the Better Business Bureau (BBB), because they are the most at-risk group for identity theft according to recent surveys and information from the Federal Trade Commission.

People at the highest risk were those who have public social media profiles and smartphone users who don’t have a password on their phones. College students fit that demographic perfectly because they fall in an age range which uses both social media and smartphones heavily. In 2011, 11.6 million adults became victims of identity theft, a 13 percent increase from 2010, according to the 2012 Identity Fraud Survey conducted by Javelin Strategy & Research.

“On college campuses, ‘friendly fraud’ accounts for more than 20 percent of all identity theft crimes,” said Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois. “Friends, roommates and classmates are all potential scammers.

Bernas explained that too often people think of scammers only as foreign-based scam artists phishing on the Internet, but this isn’t always the case. Since college acquaintances are often trusted by most college students, it can make it easier for these people to steal important information through paperwork or social networking websites.

“Most college students are so busy that when they realize they have been a victim of a scam, it is too late to do anything,” said Bernas. “College students need to take action early to avoid scams by being careful where they store personal documents and by being cautious about their Internet use.”

The BBB recommends that college students take the following five steps to fight identity theft on campus:

  • Send sensitive mail to your parents’ home or a post office box. School mailboxes are not always secure and can often be accessed easily in a dorm or apartment.
  • Important documents should be stored under lock and key. This includes your Social Security card, passport, bank and credit card statements. Shred credit card offers and any paper documents that have sensitive financial information rather than just tossing them out.
  • Never lend your credit or debit card to anyone. It is important to always keep your debit and credit cards in your possession.
  • Make sure your computer has up-to-date antivirus and spyware software. Always install any updates and patches to your computer’s operating system or browser software, which help keep your computer safe from any new advances by identity thieves online.
  • Always check your credit or debit card statements closely for any suspicious activity. The sooner you identify any potential fraud, the less you’ll suffer in the long run.

For more tips and information about scams, visit www.bbb.org

Leak & Sons Funeral Homes Celebrate 80-years in Business

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Leak & Sons Funeral Homes Celebrate 80-years in Business

ETA honors Leak, others Saturday

By Chinta Strausberg

Coming from a family of civil rights activists in business for 80-years, Spencer Leak, Sr., president of the Leak & Sons Funeral Homes is being honored Saturday by the ETA Creative Arts Foundation, Inc. along with ironic businessman Ed Gardner, businesswoman Dee Robinson Reid, rapper Lupe Fiasco and WVON.

The honoring of Leak and other heroes will be held Saturday, September 7, 2013, at ETA Square, 7558 So. South Chicago Avenue from 7 p.m. to 12 midnight.

Leak, who is also a trustee at the Chicago State University, will celebrate his 80th year in business in October having been located in the Chatham community for the past 54-years. It is the business his parents, Rev. Andrew R. Leak and wife, Dottie L. Leak, began in 1933 during the depression and the year of the World’s Fair in Chicago where his father worked as a bathroom attendant.

With a made up mind, Leak’s parents opened the funeral home at 41st and Michigan in 1933 after saving up $500 and a matching amount received as an inheritance after the death of Mrs. Leak’s father.

They then moved to 4504 So. State Street where Rev. Leak remained until September of 1959 until the city declared imminent domain poised to build the Robert Taylor Homes, which have now been razed.

The Leak’s moved to its current Chatham site, 7838 So. Cottage Grove, where they have been for 52 of the 80 years of the funeral homes’ existence. In 1959, Chatham was in racial transition and whites quickly existed.

“We happened to have come into this area when blacks were migrating from the Bronzeville area into Englewood, Chatham and into Woodlawn,” recalled Leak. “When we moved in, it was half-white, half-black but it quickly evolved into an all black community five-years after our arrival.”

There was a white-owned restaurant across the street from Leak’s Funeral Home and the owner refused to allow blacks to enter his eatery; that is all except Mr. Leak’s father who befriended the owner, ate in his restaurant and talked to him about integration. However, the owner still refused to allow blacks into his business and during the mid 1960’s his restaurant mysteriously caught on fire and was destroyed.

Determined to continue their “thriving” businesses at their new Cottage Grove site, the Leak’s held an open house in 1959. Pastors, gospel singers and business owners came. The Leak’s thought that was a good sign success would soon follow. His hopes were dashed because for the next 45-days, they did not received a single call.

Fearing they may have moved too far from their business base, the Leaks began to think they may had made a grave error in coming to Chatham, but one day a single mother walked in. Her 10-year-old daughter had died and she had no insurance. Rev. Leak told her, “You may not realize this but you are the first person to come to this funeral home seeking our services.” As an award, he gave her a funeral “fit for a princess,” recalled Mr. Leak. “We gave her the best casket, best service all at no cost.

“After my father made that decision, the telephones began to ring off the hook from families seeking our services and our business began at that moment to be a vibrant business that continues to this day…and all based upon my father making that decision we think was directed by God to give that lady who had no resources a funeral….”

There was racism even at the Oakwood Cemetery. When a mother came to the Leak’s and revealed that the then all-white Cemetery refused to bury her daughter, Rev. Leak, the NAACP and Rev. Clay Evans organized a march and today it is integrated and is where the late Mayor Harold Washington and other notables like Jesse Owens are buried.

Rev. Leak also provided limousine service to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. when he came to Chicago. Mr. Leak was the chauffeur and says he is honored to have driven Dr. King around the city.
“My dad and Edwin were good friends along with Al Raby and a group of ministers extended an invitation to Dr. King to come to Chicago. That was the beginning of the Northern trek via Chicago by Dr. King and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) which was a new organization Dr. King had established.”

The Leak’s were always civil rights-minded and ran their funeral home like a family business with Mr. Leak sleeping on the premises after he graduated from high school and went on to Wilson Junior College. He stayed there because he was needed, as am ambulance driver. Leak stayed in a one-room area at the funeral home until 1960 when he went into the Army. He was discharged in 1962 and went back home to live with his parents but sometimes still staying at the funeral home.

In 1993, his father died at the age of 87. Rev. Leak was still working at the funeral home when he passed. That is when Mr. Leak took over the reigns of the family-owned business and began to groom his son, Spencer Leak, Jr. to carry on his family’s business for the third generation.

Not only did Leak take over his father’s business including once saving it from foreclosure, but he also adopted his dad’s giving spirit. Leak will not turn away anyone who doesn’t have funds to bury their loved ones especially victims of violence.

And, that included helping to bury most of the 21 people who were trampled to death during the 2003 E2 Nightclub tragedy at 24th and Michigan where about 50 were injured after security guards sprayed pepper spray to break up a fight. “We will allowed them to have a funeral,” Leak said explaining he offered them a payment plan or no costs based on their financial status. It is a formula he still adheres to.

Today, Mr. Leak continues to give back to the community including to black churches which he has donated funds to help them remain open at the expense of nearly losing his own funeral home which once was going into foreclosure.

Like his father, the funeral home is virtually a family affair with his wife, Henrietta, whom he married 44-years ago, being the vice president of Public Relations. His son, Spencer Leak, Jr. is the Vice President and heir apparent. His son Stephen is vice president of administration and personnel, another son, Stacey Robert Leak, is an executive assistant to TV Judge Greg Mathis, and he has several nephews in the business as well.
When asked about the violence in Chicago and how has that impacted his business, Leak said he has buried more than 100 of the 502 homicide victims last year.  “To put those children in caskets in the prime of their life is tragic set of circumstances….” He said, “Our problem is not Jim Crow but Jimmy Crow of the black man.” He called for peace in the community and said if Dr. King were alive, he would be heartbroken.

In the spirit of his father, Mr. Leak has expanded his services to include a repast room where mourners can eat and socialize as they mourn the deaths of their loved ones. He has also opened a second funeral home, at 18400 South Pulaski Rd., Country Club Hills, Illinois.

And for more than 40-years, Mr. Leak has a gospel radio show each Sunday 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. on 1390 AM broadcast live from his Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Chapel where he keeps the community informed on many social issues.

In celebrating his 80th year in business, the Leak’s are even more committed to serving the community including the indigent. They believe that it was God who founded the funeral home and the vision of Rev. Leak, his humility and his planting the seeds of success and concern for others into the next generation that has sustained this iconic business. Leak’s son, Spencer, Jr., the apparent heir to this third generation business, has learned well at his father’s side and continues to improve and upgrade this historic business as he prepares for another Leak member to take over one day.

Photo Caption: Leak Family

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.

Wrongful conviction of women to be topic of September 25 lecture at Roosevelt University’s Gage Gallery

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Wrongful conviction of women to be topic of September 25 lecture at Roosevelt University’s Gage Gallery

Mother exonerated in June of killing son to speak about case

The causes of wrongful conviction of women will be the topic of a Sept. 25 lecture at Roosevelt University that will feature a look at the case of Chicago resident Nicole Harris, who was recently freed from prison and exonerated in the death of her four-year-old son.

Harris and attorney Karen Daniel, co-founder of Northwestern University’s Center on Wrongful Convictions of Women, will discuss the particular struggles that wrongfully convicted women face at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 25 in Roosevelt’s Gage Gallery, 18 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago.

A confession to police that was almost immediately recanted was a key piece of evidence in the case against Harris, who served seven years of a 30-year sentence before being released from prison late last year after the Seventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals reversed her conviction.

The appeals court found that Harris’ six-year-old son, who witnessed his younger brother’s death, should have been allowed to testify at his mother’s trial. The boy would have told a Cook County jury, as he had told police that his four-year-old brother had been pretending to be Spiderman when he accidently strangled himself with an elastic band from a fitted sheet in the bedroom the boys shared in the family apartment on the northwest side of Chicago.  Harris was exonerated of any wrongdoing in the death in June.

Daniel, who has successfully represented numerous wrongfully convicted clients in Illinois and Harris, will lecture on what went wrong in Harris’ case  and discuss specific hurdles that innocent women encounter in defending themselves once they are thrust into the legal system.

Sponsored by Roosevelt’s Joseph Loundy Center for Human Rights and the Department of Psychology, the lecture entitled “The X Factor: Causes of Wrongful Conviction of Women” is free and open to the public.

For more information, contact Shari Berkowitz at sberkowitz@roosevelt.edu or 312-281-3286.

Tenants and Supporters Respond to Ald. Moore’s Alleged Distortions

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Tenants and Supporters Respond to Ald. Moore’s Alleged Distortions

Letters to Editors

Last week, 49th Ward Alderman Joe Moore made a statement regarding the prayer vigil held outside his office, organized in support of affordable housing in Rogers Park.  As tenants of 1246 W. Pratt (also known as Astor House) and concerned community members, we believe that his statement distorts the facts and does not fully reflect the situation at 1246 W Pratt.

Former tenants have been served eviction lawsuits without the building’s owners going through the required legal processes.  This includes tenants who paid their rent on time every month.  While Moore’s statement says that BJB desires “any tenant in good standing to remain in the building during the repairs,” there were tenants who were relocated to other united on temporary leases while their units were being repaired, with the understanding that they would return to their original units, who were then evicted from the building.  One former tenant was evicted after being denied a week’s extension on rent, which was needed due to an extended stay in the hospital.  Former tenants, visiting friends at 1246 W Pratt, have tried to talk to potential new tenants which subsequently got them barred from the building.

Moore reported that his and his staff’s interactions with the building owners have been positive.  This is not the experience of the tenants of 1246 W. Pratt, who still experience problems with the building, such as an elevator that often breaks down.  If the building owners have permits to make repairs on the elevator, as Moore mentions, why are they not prioritizing the basic need of tenants to access their apartments– particularly those who are physically disabled and must deal with nine or more flights of stairs?  The statement also mentions that “neighbors who reside in adjacent properties have expressed satisfaction with the improvements they have seen to the buildings.”  Considering there have been no changes made to the exterior of the building, we are not sure to what improvements he refers.

The statement also claims that the owners have promised not to significantly raise rent prices.  Perhaps we have different understandings of what a “significant” raise would be.  One current tenant pays $550 for a studio apartment, while Craigslist ads for studio apartments at 1246 W. Pratt state that rent is $695 and up.

While we applaud Moore’s stated goal of “[getting] the building into the hands of responsible ownership,” we disagree that it has been achieved.  1246 W Pratt is currently in building court, seeking that management be turned over to the city.  Several tenants new to Astor House this summer reported that they did not find out that Astor House is in building court, or the extent of repair and pest issues, until after they moved in, and are looking to break their leases.  Building code violations from before the new owners obtained the building have yet to be addressed.

The statement suggests that tenants are engaging in this now months-long struggle in an attempt to extort money from the owners, and that community organizers are looking for an attempt to justify the existence of a “new advocacy group.” The organizations that support the tenants of 1246 W Pratt, Northside Action for Justice and Communities United Against Foreclosure and Eviction, were both founded long before their involvement with Astor House, and both support other campaigns to support community members at risk of losing their homes.  Our mission is to ensure accessible, affordable housing for all Northside residents regardless of income status, not to engage in ethics violations.

An Alderman setting up a meeting between tenants and the owner who is displacing them to discuss the support the tenants need is not being involved in extortion. Convening such a meeting is what an alderman is supposed to do. 44th Ward Alderman Tom Tunney did exactly that; Tunney convened a meeting with Jamie Purcell of BJB Properties to discuss preserving affordability at all of the Lakeview SROs he has purchased (Abbott, Chateau, Sheffield House, Bel Air, and Ambers). While negotiations are still going on, it has so far resulted in a mutually acceptable solution that allowed some tenants to be able to move with dignity. We are the Alderman’s constituents and we need him to advocate for tenants at the Astor House. The mischaracterization of the Astor House tenants and supporting organizations is troubling coming from an Alderman who touts his “decades-long advocacy of tenants’ rights.”

The tenants of Astor House stand firm in their conviction that they have provided Joe Moore with “objective evidence that the current landlords are not fulfilling their obligations,” and continue to request that he work with us to negotiate with BJB, the current owners of 1246 W Pratt.

Clifford Law Offices Files Class Action Complaint Against Advocate Medical for Negligence in Handling Medical Information of Four-Million Patients

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Clifford Law Offices Files Class Action Complaint Against Advocate Medical for Negligence in Handling Medical Information of Four-Million Patients

Clifford Law Offices, a nationally recognized personal injury law firm, filed Thursday (Sept. 5, 2013) a class action lawsuit in Cook County Circuit Court on behalf of millions of patients whose privacy and medical information were compromised by the alleged theft of four computers at an administrative office in July.

The Chicago law firm brought the action on behalf of a mother and her daughter of suburban Northbrook who were patients of Advocate and whose personal information was maintained at Advocate Medical Group offices in Park Ridge.  The lawsuit alleges that the Downers Grove-based health care group was negligent in protecting private data and failed to use encryption and other basic security measures on behalf of its patients.

Patients were informed by letter just days ago that their privacy was compromised when four computers containing up to four million patients’ information, including names, addresses, dates of birth and Social Security numbers, were allegedly stolen from administrative offices on Touhy Avenue in the northwest suburb.  Although full medical records were not on the computers, medical diagnoses, service codes and health insurance information were kept on these computers.

“In this age of advanced technology, Advocate had to realize that its unorthodox methodology for maintaining important and private data posed a risk to the safety and security of their patients,” said Robert A. Clifford, senior partner at Clifford Law Offices.  “Equally disturbing is the fact that an organization like Advocate would have the private and confidential information of some four million patients stored in an unencrypted environment and saved to the computers’ hard drives.  There is just no excuse for this negligence, and the harm that this has caused so many, many people is something that could have been avoided had proper precautions been taken.”

The class action was brought on behalf of Pierre Petrich and her daughter, Amara, who are unavailable for comment on this matter as they do not wish to further compromise their private and confidential health information by disclosing any further details of their care and treatment at Advocate.

Shannon McNulty, partner at Clifford Law Offices and attorney on the case, can be reached for comment at 312-899-9090.

To view a copy of the stamped complaint, please visit www.CliffordLaw.com

For further information, please call Clifford Law Offices’ Communications Partner Pamela Sakowicz Menaker at 847-251-4877 or 847-721-0909.



In Honor of Grandparents Day State praises Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on In Honor of Grandparents Day State praises Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

Department on Aging funds support services for grandparents who need assistance to provide a stable environment for their grandchildren

SPRINGFIELD, IL – In observance of Grandparents Day on Sunday, September 8, Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) Director John K. Holton, Ph.D., praised grandparents who are raising their grandchildren and offered support. A grandparent who lives with and is responsible for most of the basic needs of their grandchildren, ages 18 and younger, is a primary caregiver. In Illinois, it’s estimated more than 100,000 grandparents are serving as the primary caregivers for their grandchildren when the parents are unable to.

“The decision by a grandparent to raise their grandchild can be a difficult one. And for those with limited resources, another round of parenting can pose further stress on the grandparent, whatever the circumstances.

So, as we mark this Grandparents Day observance I want to remind that there is help with the physical, emotional and financial stresses that accompany raising grandchildren,” said Director Holton.

The occurrence of grandparents raising grandchildren (or other child relatives) is not new but nationally the number of children being raised by people other than a parent has dramatically increased. Factors that contribute to more grandparents raising their grandchildren include drugs and alcohol abuse, health issues, death, divorce and incarceration. In Illinois, there are more than 200,000 children who live in homes with grandparents serving as the primary caregivers.

IDoA has a program called Grandparents Raising Grandchildren (GRG) to help with efforts to locate, assist and promote awareness of grandparents (of any age) as well as other relatives, who are currently raising their family’s children. Created in 1996, GRG offers numerous services that may help during difficult times. The program is a referral service to local resources, such as support groups and legal assistance. And in some cases GRG provides emergency financial assistance for such needs as utility bills, medications, food and clothing.

IDoA awards grants to non-profit organizations to fund initiatives addressing the needs of GRG. The grants fund local resources for services, such as: legal assistance to secure guardianship, establish custody and/or back up plans when the grandparents are no longer able to provide care; therapeutic help for children who have lost a parent or significant caregiver through death, divorce or abandonment; advocacy and mentoring; counseling; and respite care. For FY14, IDoA has awarded $300,000 in grants to 46 support groups.

For more information about Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, visit www.state.il.us/aging or weekdays call the Senior HelpLine at 800-252-8966, or 888-206-1327 for the hearing impaired.

Protest to End Assad’s War September 7th in Downtown Chicago

Posted by Admin On September - 6 - 2013 Comments Off on Protest to End Assad’s War September 7th in Downtown Chicago
Two weeks ago the Syrian government used chemical weapons on its own people killing over 1500 civilians, over 450 of whom were children. Since the beginning of the Syrian Revolution in March 2011, over 100,000 Syrians have been killed by the Assad regime. It is time to say ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! We are are in support of President Obama’s plan to send airstrikes into Syria and are urging congressman and senators to vote “yes” to ending Assad’s war.
The protest will be held Saturday September 7th, 4 P.M. – 6 P.M., at Congress & Michigan, in Downtown Chicago.

For more information, contact Suzanne Kawamleh at 219.242.0643.

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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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