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December , 2018
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  Offers an in-depth analysis of Lake Michigan’s environmental condition and how to improve its health  Chicago, ...
(From New America Media) By Earl Ofari Hutchinson   Synopsis: A young, irresponsible, no-name white woman should never be ...
An Open Letter to Unarmed African Americans By Orrin Hudson, former police officer-turned-community activist ...
  Providing Grants to Not-For-Profit Organizations Making Significant Impacts in Communities   Washington, DC (BlackNews.com) -- The ...
CHICAGO, IL ─ Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced charges against two ...
CARBONDALE, IL – Illinois Lt. Governor Sheila Simon issued the following statement on President Barack ...

Archive for June 18th, 2014

Benghazi Suspect Ahmed Abu Khatallah Captured; Now in U.S. Custody

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Statement by President Barack Obama on the Apprehension of Ahmed Abu Khatallah

The United States has an unwavering commitment to bring to justice those responsible for harming Americans. Since the deadly attacks on our facilities in Benghazi, I have made it a priority to find and bring to justice those responsible for the deaths of four brave Americans. I recently authorized an operation in Libya to detain an individual charged for his role in these attacks, Ahmed Abu Khatallah. The fact that he is now in U.S. custody is a testament to the painstaking efforts of our military, law enforcement, and intelligence personnel. Because of their courage and professionalism, this individual will now face the full weight of the American justice system.

Even as we welcome the success of this operation, we also pause to remember the four Americans who gave their lives in Benghazi representing their country: Ambassador Chris Stevens, Sean Smith, Tyrone Woods, and Glen Doherty. As I said shortly after the attack, they exemplified the values that we stand for as a nation, including a commitment to freedom and justice. All Americans should be grateful for their service, just as we are grateful to all our personnel – civilian and military – who represent our country around the globe. We will continue to honor our fallen by carrying on their efforts in support of the Libyan people’s aspirations to live in a peaceful, prosperous, and democratic society.

With this operation, the United States has once again demonstrated that we will do whatever it takes to see that justice is done when people harm Americans. We will continue our efforts to bring to justice those who were responsible for the Benghazi attacks. We will remain vigilant against all acts of terrorism, and we will continue to prioritize the protection of our service-members and civilians overseas. We will also sustain our support for the Libyan people, as they work to overcome years of tyranny and do the difficult work of building a democracy.

Madigan: $968 Million Joint State, Federal Settlement With SunTrust to Provide Loan Modifications, Foreclosure Relief

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS
Attorney General’s Latest Effort to Combat Foreclosure Crisis Will Add to $2.4 Billion in Relief Secured for Illinois Borrowers

CHICAGO, IL —Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced a $968 million joint state-federal settlement with mortgage lender and servicer SunTrust Mortgage Inc. to address mortgage origination, servicing and foreclosure abuses.

The settlement will provide direct relief for Illinois borrowers, set tough new mortgage servicing standards and grant oversight authority to an independent monitor. The settlement was forged by Madigan’s office, 49 other attorneys general, the U.S. Department of Justice, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

“Today’s settlement is the latest action in my ongoing work to hold banks and servicers accountable for fraudulent conduct that affected thousands of Illinois homeowners struggling to save their homes,” Madigan said. “Similar to the national mortgage settlement, this settlement will provide loan refinancing and direct payments to harmed borrowers.”

As part of the national $968 million settlement, SunTrust agreed to provide $500 million in relief directly to borrowers in the form of loan modifications, including principal reductions and refinancing for underwater mortgages.

SunTrust also agreed to pay the federal government $418 million to resolve its potential liability under the federal False Claims Act for originating and underwriting loans that violated its obligations as a participant in the Federal Housing Administration insurance program. Finally, SunTrust agreed to pay $50 million in cash to redress abusive servicing practices, $40 million of which will be distributed to borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosure.

The agreement’s mortgage servicing terms largely reflect the 2012 National Mortgage Settlement reached by Madigan, her counterparts and the federal government with Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citibank and Ally Bank, formerly GMAC, which addressed similar allegations of misconduct and overhauled the country’s mortgage servicing standards to prevent future abuses during the foreclosure process. That settlement has provided over $2.4 billion in direct relief to Illinois homeowners.

Borrower Relief

The agreement requires SunTrust to provide certain borrowers with loan modifications or other relief, including principal reductions and refinancing for underwater mortgages. Illinois borrowers who lost their homes to foreclosure from January 1, 2008, through December 31, 2013, and encountered servicing abuse by SunTrust will be eligible for a payment from the national $40 million fund for payments to borrowers. The borrower payment amount will depend on how many borrowers file claims. Eligible borrowers will be contacted about how to qualify for payments. Borrowers can also contact SunTrust directly by calling 1-800-634-7928 or visiting www.SunTrustMortgage.com. Madigan also encouraged Illinois residents with questions to contact her Homeowner Helpline at 1-866-544-7151.

New Mortgage Servicing Standards

The settlement requires SunTrust to substantially change how it services loans, handles foreclosures and ensures the accuracy of information provided in federal bankruptcy court. The settlement terms will address past foreclosure abuses, such as robo-signing, improper documentation and lost paperwork.

The settlement creates dozens of new consumer protections and standards, including:

Making foreclosure a last resort by requiring SunTrust to evaluate homeowners for other loss mitigation options;

Restricting foreclosure while the homeowner is being considered for a loan modification;

Creating new procedures and timelines for reviewing loan modification applications;

Giving homeowners the right to appeal denials of loan modifications; and

Requiring a single point of contact for borrowers seeking information about their loans and maintaining adequate staff to handle calls.

The National Mortgage Settlement’s independent monitor, Joseph A. Smith Jr., will oversee SunTrust agreement compliance. Smith served as the North Carolina Commissioner of Banks from 2002 until 2012 and is the former Chairman of the Conference of State Banks Supervisors. Smith will oversee implementation of the servicing standards required by the agreement; impose penalties of up to $1 million per violation (or up to $5 million for certain repeat violations); and issue regular public reports that identify any quarter in which a servicer fell short of the standards imposed in the settlement.

The agreement will be filed as a consent judgment in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The settlement does not grant immunity from criminal offenses and would not affect criminal prosecutions. The agreement also does not prevent homeowners or investors from pursuing individual, institutional or class action civil cases, and it preserves the authority of state attorneys general and federal agencies to investigate and pursue other aspects of the mortgage crisis, including wrongful securitization conduct that is the focus of the Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities Working Group, of which Madigan is a leading member.

Settlement Part of Ongoing Effort to Hold Banks Accountable for Financial Crisis

Long before today’s settlement announcement, Attorney General Madigan has led the country in taking legal action against banks, lenders and other financial institutions for unlawful financial misconduct that contributed to the country’s economic collapse.

Currently, Madigan is litigating against the national credit rating agency Standard & Poor’s, alleging that the company compromised its independence as a rating agency by doling out high ratings to unworthy, risky investments as a corporate strategy to increase its revenue and market share.

Last year, Madigan secured a $100 million settlement with JPMorgan Chase & Company to recover losses incurred by Illinois’ pension systems as a result of the bank’s misconduct in its marketing and sale of risky residential mortgage-backed securities in the lead up to the 2008 economic collapse.

Madigan also became the first attorney general in the nation to sue a national bank for fair lending violations. Madigan and the U.S. Department of Justice secured a $175 million national settlement to resolve allegations that Wells Fargo illegally targeted African American and Latino borrowers for sales of the lender’s poorest quality and most expensive mortgages during the height of the subprime mortgage lending spree. Madigan and the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice also reached a $335 million national settlement with Countrywide, once the nation’s largest mortgage lender, to resolve similar allegations of fair lending violations. The settlement has provided restitution to harmed Illinois borrowers and is the largest settlement of a fair lending lawsuit ever obtained by a state attorney general.

Madigan also reached a landmark $8.7 billion national settlement in 2008 against Countrywide for deceptively placing thousands of Illinois homeowners into risky, toxic and unaffordable subprime mortgages. The settlement with Countrywide’s new owner, Bank of America, established the nation’s first mandatory loan modification program.

For more information, visit Madigan’s website or call the Attorney General’s Homeowner Helpline at 1-866-544-7151.

National Urban League Statement on Voting Rights Amendment Act Hearing

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

National Urban League President and CEO Marc H. Morial issued the following statement in response to the announcement by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) of a hearing in his committee on the Voting Rights Amendment Act of 2014.

“One year ago, the Supreme Court dealt a crushing blow to voting rights by removing important protections for voters who had suffered—and still suffer—historic disenfranchisement.  One year later, the Senate is taking an important first step to reaffirm the fundamental right of all Americans to have equal access to the ballot box.

“We look forward to a robust discussion of the problems voters across the country still face in the wake of the Shelby decision and the urgent need to create a modern, effective Voting Rights Act for today.

“The bipartisan support the bill enjoys in both houses must spur the House Judiciary Committee to move quickly with its own hearing and vote on this legislation before the November elections.   Millions of American voters deserve no less than to have these long-overdue protections restored.”


Click here to read the National Urban League Statement on Introduction of Voting Rights Amendment Act of 2014.

President Obama will sign an Executive Order Prohibiting Discrimination by Federal Contractors on the Basis of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Remarks by the President Barack Obama at a DNC LGBT Gala- Gotham Hall,New York, New York

Edith, Robbie, thanks for the wonderfully brief introduction.  (Laughter.)  I mean that sincerely.  The day that the Supreme Court issued its ruling, United States v. Windsor, was a great day for America, a clear victory for human decency and equality and justice and freedom.  So we thank you for your courage and your inspiration.  Give them a big round of applause.

I want to thank Debbie Wasserman-Schultz for the great job she’s doing as chair of the DNC.   Andy Tobias, making sure the money goes to the right places.  Yeah, Andy!  Henry Muñoz — thank you, Henry.  Thanks to Sia for the beautiful performance.   Our MJ, Jesse Tyler Ferguson.   Jesse, congratulations on both your weddings.  Mitch and Cam finally tied the knot.  Michelle and the girls were crying.

There are other newlyweds here — Eric Johnson and Mark Parker were married a couple of hours ago.  They decided to make this their after-party — pretty cool.  If you’ve got a glass, raise it for Eric and Mark — a lifetime of health and happiness to them.

So Pride Month is a time for celebration, and this year we’ve got a lot to celebrate.  If you think about everything that’s happened in the last 12 months, it is remarkable.  In nine more states you’re now free to marry the person you love — that includes my two home states of Hawaii and Illinois.   The NFL drafted its first openly gay player.  The U.S. Postal Service made history by putting an openly gay person on a stamp — the late, great Harvey Milk smiling from ear to ear.

So now you flash back 10 years ago.  Maybe no single issue divided our country more than same-sex marriage.  In fact, the Republican Party built their entire strategy for 2004 around this issue.  You remember?  They calculated that if they put constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage on state ballots, they’d turn out more voters, they’d win.  And they, frankly, were right.  People flocked to the polls.  Those amendments were on the ballots in 11 states.  They passed in every single one.

Now, here’s a good bet.  They’re not going to try the same strategy in 2014.   When I took office, only two states had marriage equality.  Today, 19 states and the District of Columbia do.  There are court rulings pending in other states as well.  And despite the great work of some incredibly talented and courageous lawyers, it is important to understand it’s not just the laws that are changing — it’s hearts and minds.

The conventional wisdom says that all this change is due to young people growing up with different attitudes than their parents and their grandparents had.  And anybody who has kids knows that there is some truth to that.  The basic attitude is, I’m sorry, what is it that you’re talking about here?  What’s the big deal?  But what’s been remarkable is the way Americans of all age groups are increasingly embracing marriage equality.  They understand love is love.  And for many people whose minds have changed, it was love that did it — love for the child or the grandchild, or the friend or the coworker who sat down one day and held their hands and took a deep breath and said, I’m gay.

Almost everybody in this room was that child or grandchild or friend or coworker at some point.  And you may not have known it at the time — it may have seemed like an individual act — but in those moments when you summoned that courage and reached out with that hopeful love, you were doing it for everybody.

And that’s why I’m here tonight, to say thank you for helping make America more just and more compassionate.

And I want to thank all the incredible friends in the room for the support and guidance that so many of you have offered my administration over the past five and a half years.  Sometimes you guys were a little impatient.  Sometimes I had to say, will you just settle down for a second, we’ve got this.  But because of your help, we’ve been able to do more to protect the rights of lesbian, and gay, and bisexual and transgender Americans than any administration in history.

We repealed “don’t ask, don’t tell,” because no one should have to hide who you love to serve the country we love.  We reauthorized the Violence Against Women Act with new protections.  And I signed a hate crimes law bearing Matthew Shepard’s name, because hate-driven violence has taken the lives of too many in this country.  It has to end.

I lifted the 22-year ban on people with HIV traveling to the U.S. — and prohibited discrimination in hospitals and housing that received federal funding, because stigma and fear have no place in our laws.  We’ve made it illegal for health insurers to deny coverage to people based on sexual orientation or gender identity.  Starting next year, insurance companies that offer coverage to straight couples have to offer it to gay couples, too.

We’ve worked to address and prevent bullying, because it’s not enough to say it gets better.  We’ve got to make it better. And today, the Senate confirmed two openly gay judges in the same day.   Before I took office, only one openly gay judge had been confirmed in history.  We have 10 more.

And as I said in my second inaugural address, if we’re truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well.  That’s why we stopped the defending the so-called Defense of Marriage Act in the courts and argued alongside Edie and Robbie before the highest court in the land.  That’s why we’re working to implement the Court’s ruling to extend benefits to married same-sex couples whenever possible.  People have been waiting a long time for justice, and we’re working to deliver on it as fast as we can.

So we’ve got some pretty good reasons to celebrate.  That doesn’t mean, though, that we can grow complacent.  Progress doesn’t just have to be fought for, it has to be defended.  Today, a lawmaker in Oklahoma is trying to ban all marriages rather than recognize same-sex marriage.  Now, that seems a little over the top, but that’s just my opinion.  The Texas Republican Party’s state platform endorses gay conversion therapy in 2014.  Fierce legal fights are underway to stop marriage equality from expanding any further or to prevent court rulings from taking effect.  And most of all, there are still Americans out there who are vulnerable and alone, and still need our support.

So we can’t stop.  We’ve got to keep fighting.  We’ve got to keep fighting for the human rights of people around the world — to those who face violence and intimidation every single day, and who live under governments that have made the existence of anybody who’s LGBT illegal.  We need to send a message to those folks.  I want them to hear from the President of the United States:  We believe in your dignity and your equality, and the United States stands with you.

And we’ve got to keep fighting to protect the lives of our brothers and sisters here at home.  Last week, I got a chance to watch the film version of “The Normal Heart.”  And I actually called Ryan Murphy afterwards to tell him to how much I admired it.  It’s more than just a story from our past.  It’s a reminder that we have to stay vigilant in the fight against HIV/AIDS, which still claims the lives of too many Americans — (applause) — especially low-income Americans; especially the minority LGBT community that doesn’t have all the resources, doesn’t have all the information they need.  It still takes a toll.

Now, I know that many people in this room have photographs with smiling friends from days gone by, and a lot of those friends are gone, taken before their time — both because of a diseases and because there was a government that failed to recognize that disease in time.  And that can happen again if we’re not careful.

And that’s why my administration created the first comprehensive National HIV/AIDS Strategy.  That’s why we’re working toward an AIDS-free generation, so fewer people have to know the pain of this disease and so our country doesn’t lose any more of its sons and daughters.

We’ve got to keep fighting for equality in the workplace.  Right now there are more states that allow same-sex marriage than there are states that prohibit discrimination against LGBT workers.  Think about that.

We have laws that say Americans can’t be fired from their jobs because of the color of their skin or for their religion or because of a disability.  But every day, millions of Americans go to work knowing that they could lose their job, not because of anything they did, but because of who they are.  That is not right.  It is wrong.

Now, Congress has been considering legislation to protect LGBT workers for decades.  I want you to understand — for decades.  Last November, it finally looked like we were getting somewhere.  The Senate passed ENDA, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.  It had strong bipartisan support.  But shockingly enough, the House refused to act.  Meanwhile, millions of Americans are still waiting.  It’s been decades.

The majority of Fortune 500 companies, small businesses already have nondiscrimination policies that protect their employees — not just because it’s the right thing to do, but because it helps them attract and retain the best talent.  They’re right.  We don’t benefit as a country or an economy — businesses don’t benefit if they’re leaving talent off the field.

And that’s why I’ve directed my staff to prepare for my signature, an executive order prohibiting discrimination by federal contractors on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.  Because in the United States of America, who you are and who you love shouldn’t be a fireable offense.  It would be better, by the way, if Congress passed a more comprehensive law that didn’t just cover federal contractors.  And we need to keep working on that, so don’t take the pressure off Congress.

This seems to be a pattern these days.  Everybody has just given up so much on Congress that we end up doing something through executive order.  And that’s helpful, but it doesn’t reach everybody that needs to be reached.  Congress needs to start working again, so let’s make sure that we keep the pressure up there.

This is a country where no matter who you are, or what you look like, or how you came up, or what your last name is, or who you love — if you work hard and you take responsibility, you should be able to make it.  That’s the story of America.  That’s the story of this movement:  People who stand up and come out and march, and organize, and fight to expand the rights we enjoy and extend them to other people — people who work against the odds to build a nation in which nobody is a second-class citizen, everybody is free to be who they are; and that you’re judged based on are you kind and competent and work hard, and treat each other with respect, and are a team player and look after your community, and care and love and cherish your kids.  That’s how we’re supposed to be judged.

That’s the fight that brought all of us here today.  That’s what made it possible for me to stand up here as your President.  It’s what gave many people in this room the freedom to live their lives freely.  It’s what should inspire us to keep working to make sure all our children grow up in an America where differences are respected and even celebrated, and where love is love.

And it is also why those of us who in the past might have not always enjoyed the full liberty that this amazing country of ours has to offer, that we’ve got to be thinking about others who are still struggling.  That’s why this community has to be just as concerned about poor kids, regardless of sexual orientation.

That’s why this community should be fighting for workers who aren’t getting paid a minimum wage that’s high enough.

That’s why this community has to show compassion for the illegal immigrant who is contributing to our society and just wants a chance to move out of the shadows.

That’s why this community should be concerned about equal pay for equal work, straight or gay.

That’s why this community has to be concerned about the remaining vestiges of racial discrimination.

If you’ve experienced being on the outside, you’ve got to be one to bring more folks in even once you are inside.  That’s our task.  That’s our job.  That’s why we’re here tonight.

Thank you.  God bless you.  God bless America.

New Grads Step Into a World of Debt

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

New Grads Step Into a World of Debt

New America Media/VoiceWaves

By Ben Novotny

LONG BEACH — When film student Chris Reyes talks about the $430 he pays each month toward his student loan, he uses the movie Jaws as a metaphor.

“It’s like a shark that takes a chunk out of me every month,” said Reyes, who graduated from California State University, Long Beach last year owing over $45,000 in student debt. “I haven’t eaten out at a restaurant in a really long time.”

Reyes has managed to scrape by with a part time job at bookstore, while he looks for a second job to help cover his bills, including his student loan payments. “I knew I would have to get a second part-time job once I started at Barnes & Noble,” said Reyes, who began working at the chain store last summer.

Reyes is not alone. Outstanding student debt across the United States has reached $1.2 trillion according to Forbes, and is increasing at a faster rate than mortgages and auto loans. Seventy-one percent of 2013 college graduates had student loan debt, with an average of $29,400 per borrower, and more than half of Californians have student debt with an average of $20,000, according to data compiled by the Institute for College Access and Success.

“My parents kept telling me that if I get a college degree I’ll get a job because that’s what happened in their generation, but now that’s not the case,” said Tatiana Bush, a recent graduate of UC Irvine. “There are so many more hurdles that we have to jump through than in past generations. We have more things we have to add to our resume in order to even be seen.”

Because of her student loans, Bush has decided to join a pro-women’s basketball team in Georgia rather than pursue a graduate degree.

“If I got to grad school, I’m going to have to take out another loan, and I don’t want to even get into that because I haven’t even paid off my current student loans,” said Bush. “I could make six figures playing basketball overseas, and that sounds more promising to me than working at a retail store for a little over minimum wage.”

A market survey conducted by the real estate website Redfin found that a significant number of prospective first-time homebuyers – 16 percent – said student loans were preventing them from buying a house, while 33 percent said student debt delayed them from purchasing a home for one or two years.

“I haven’t been in a situation where I would be looking for a house, but I’m fearful for that day to come,” said Nathan Bronson, an alumni of San Francisco State University who owes $30,000 in student loans.

Bronson believes that the student debt crisis has made people of his generation more skeptical about going to college.

“From my standpoint, I don’t really see the people who got college degrees having much more of an advantage than people that just have a high school diploma,” said Bronson.

Yet according to Georgetown University, more than six out of ten jobs will require a college degree by 2018.

“Sometimes I question whether or not I should have taken out student loans in order to get my degree,” said Nancy Alocer, who studied anthropology at UC Davis and now pays $500 a month towards her student loans. Without her student debt, Alocer says she would be using that money to build a business with her siblings.

Maritza Reyna, who specializes in education loans at Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Orange County, believes that some students might be causing themselves harm by taking out higher loans than they need.

“A lot of students actually take out more money for unnecessary purchases, like a new bed for their dorm,” said Reyes. “So they take out more for little luxuries versus using the money just for their tuition and their books.”

Reyna also advises recent college graduates to budget their expenses and to have an estimated figure of how much they owe every month.

“Even if you defer payments on your loan, the interest will keep occurring, so the more you defer the bigger your loan grows,” said Reyna.

However, some college graduates, like Bronson, have put off paying down their student loans, simply because they can’t afford it.

“The interest is probably incurring as we speak,” said Bronson, who recently got a job doing video work for the L.A. Kings. “Right now it’s just affecting me mentally, but I believe that someday it will affect me physically as well.”

Ben Novotny is a student reporter at VoiceWaves, a youth-led community news outlet dedicated to deepening the coverage of community health-related issues in Long Beach, California. VoiceWaves is a project of New America Media, supported by a grant from The California Endowment.

There’s Still Time to be a Part of the 50th Chicago International Film Festival

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

Entry Deadline for Submissions is June 20, 2014

CHICAGO, IL – The deadline to enter all films for the 50th Chicago International Film Festival (October 9 – 23, 2014) is fast approaching.  Films are being accepted in the following competitive categories:
  • Feature Films
  • Feature Length Documentaries
  • Documentary Short Films
  • Short Films
  • Student Films
Regular deadline for submissions is a postmark date of June 20, 2014.
Late deadline for submissions is a postmark date of July 7, 2014.

The Chicago International Film Festival is the oldest competitive film festival in North America and annually presents the latest and greatest in world cinema with presentation of new works by veteran masters and talented newcomers. Winners from last year’s Festival came from Canada, France, Germany, Hungary, Israel, the US and more.

Last year, the Festival presented 135 feature films, including 20 documentaries, and 55 live action and animated short films, that made their regional, national and, in some cases, world premieres in Chicago. Many of these films participated in a number of competitions all seeking the festival’s highest honor, the Gold Hugo—a standard of excellence in the world of cinema and a true symbol of discovery.

The Chicago International Film Festival’s competitions include: the International Feature Film Competition, New Directors Competition (first and second feature films), Documentary Competition, Out-Look Competition (LGBTQ) and Short Film Competition. Highlighted programs include After Dark, Black Perspectives, Cinema of the Americas and Reel Women.

Juries made up of great cinematic artists and notable critics convene to judge Festival films and award only the movies that involve an audience by challenging, entertaining and inspiring them, honoring filmmakers for their great artistic achievements.

For complete regulations and entry forms, visit the official website at www.chicagofilmfestival.com to download the forms or enter online.

ABOUT CINEMA/CHICAGO

Cinema/Chicago is a not-for-profit cultural and education 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 CineYouth Festival, Intercom Competition, International Screenings Program, Black Perspectives and Education Outreach.

CBC Chair Marcia L. Fudge Statement on the 50th Anniversary of Freedom Summer

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

WASHINGTON, DC – Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) Chair Marcia L. Fudge (OH-11) released the following statement on the 50th Anniversary of Freedom Summer:

“This month, we mark the 50th Anniversary of Freedom Summer where men and women of all ages traveled to and through Mississippi to ensure African-Americans were registered and protected as they fought to exercise their right to vote. This effort was led by the Congress on Racial Equality (CORE) and the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) during the time in which Congressman John Lewis served as SNCC Chair.  They organized African Americans in Mississippi and more than 1,000 young white volunteers to face bigoted authorities and racist groups who violently opposed racial equality in the south.

“Despite mass bus and church bombings, vicious beatings, and the constant threat of death, individuals within the Freedom Summer coalition tirelessly worked on behalf of oppressed people in Mississippi and across this nation. America’s Freedom Riders and Freedom Summer movements served as catalysts for the country’s leaders to pay attention and take legislative action to help stop the terror African Americans faced daily as they fought to have their constitutional rights protected. Not long after stories from Freedom Summer spread across the nation, members of Congress worked together to pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that outlawed discrimination in public places based on race, color, religion, sex and national origin. The following year, the Voting Rights Act of 1965 was signed into law.

“While we honor the legacy and the lives of the Freedom Summer volunteers this June, we must also recognize that everything they worked for is at risk. In the wake of the Shelby County v. Holder decision, voter discrimination in America is still a salient and significant problem. In cities and counties across this country, polling places are being closed; same-day and early voting opportunities have been eliminated; and state governments have introduced legislation to reduce opportunities for individuals to register and vote. Many of these changes will disproportionately impact communities of color, seniors, individuals who are poor and students.

“The bipartisan Voting Rights Amendment Act of 2014 is a step forward in countering discrimination in voting and should be brought to the House floor for discussion and debate. Congress must do what is necessary to overcome the current challenges we face that violate equal protection for every individual under the law. In the spirit of Freedom Summer, and all that was done to help this country realize its promise, we must not let any voter discrimination effort prevail.”

Help Protect Your Identity – FREE BBB Paper Shredding and Electronics Recycling Saturday, June 21st

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS

CHICAGO, IL – The Federal Trade Commission national ranking of consumer complaints show that last year, consumers lost over $1.6 billion to fraud.

The Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois, in conjunction with various government agencies, invites consumers and businesses to protect their identities by shredding unwanted personal, financial or confidential documents FREE at the annual “Shred It and Forget It” Shredder Day at the United Center 1901 W. Madison St. Lot A in Chicago from 9AM-1PM on June 21st. Gates close at 12:45pm. Free electronics recycling will also be available.

Hosts of the annual event include the BBB along with the City of Chicago, Chicago Police Department, FBI, FTC, Illinois Attorney General’s Office, and United States Postal Inspection Service. The Shred Day media sponsor is WBBM Newsradio 780AM & 105.9FM. Shredding and recycling services will be provided by Vintage Tech Recyclers, Beaver Shredding, Chicago Shred Authority, Shred-It and Accurate Document Destruction.

As of January 1, 2012 the Electronic Products Recycling & Reuse Act requires people to recycle their electronic devices including televisions, monitors, printers and computers, rather than allow them to be disposed of in a landfill.

TVs, monitors, laptops, PCs, servers, data storage devices, printers, fax/copy machines, cell phones, VCRs, DVD players, video cameras and game consoles are among the types of electronic equipment that will be collected for recycling at the event. To learn more about the electronics you can recycle at this event, visit www.chicagoshreds.com

Participants are asked to limit the material they want shred to 10 boxes of documents per vehicle. There will also be free home shredders given away during the event every 15 minutes. You can register online to win a free shredder at www.chicagoshreds.com

Below are some suggestions for deciding how long to keep personal financial information:

  • A good rule of thumb is to keep all tax returns and supporting documentation for seven years. The IRS has three years from your tax-filing date to audit, and has six years to challenge a claim.
  • Keep credit card statements for seven years if tax related expenses are documented.
  • Keep paycheck stubs for one year. Be sure to cross reference the paycheck stub to the W-2 form.
  • Be sure to keep bank statements and canceled checks for at least one year.
  • Bills should be kept for one year or until the canceled check has been returned. Receipts for large ticket items should be kept for insurance purposes.
  • Home improvement receipts should be kept for six years or permanently.
  • Items such as birth certificates, social security cards, insurance policies, titles or wills should be kept permanently in a safety deposit box.
  • If you are going to dispose of documents with sensitive information, be sure to SHRED!

More information about the “Shred It and Forget It” Shredder Day event can be found at www.chicagoshreds.com

For more information on scams, visit http://www.bbb.org/ or follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

When I Sense Emotions: Raw & Bold Book of Poetry Captures Vulnerability of Human Emotion

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 5 COMMENTS
Written from the heart by Devon Phipps, ‘When I Sense Emotions’ reaches inside of each and every reader to capture the true essence of life’s emotions. Constructed completely in verse, each line oozes with the author’s passion to compel his audience to uncover thoughts and feelings that previously went unnoticed. Above all, Phipps’ work invites readers to heighten their senses, question the core of their very being and take vital guidance from each and every word.

CHICAGO, IL – While many writers enjoy exploiting the ‘starving poet’ image, Devon Phipps is living the dilemma each and every day. While he’s a world-class wordsmith who can rival history’s bestsellers, his work has gone unnoticed to date. However, the launch of Phipps’ new book is poised to propel his work around the world and change the lives of reader in the process.
‘When I Sense Emotions’ comes directly from the heart; committing emotions to paper and inspiring readers to free their own minds as they explore the sensitive side of the human condition.

Synopsis:

When I Sense Emotions is a collection of emotional and raw poetry by author Devon Phipps. His chilling poetry will pique emotions as it makes us question who we are and why our emotions are stimulated so profoundly. Emotions we keep hidden will surely awaken and we will feel as one.

Written completely in free verse poetry with some other literary elements, this collection will capture the soul and awaken dormant emotions, while speaking directly to the ups and downs of everyday life. This book of verse captures the true essence of the emotions encountered when things change or don’t go as planned.

“My book uses poetry to take a look at why we feel as we do in different situations, as well as exposing thoughts and feelings that many readers are unable to tap into,” says Phipps. “I throw common literary conventions out of the window in order to exploit the vulnerability and volatility of emotion; it’s too unpredictable to conform to literary constraints.”
Continuing, “Each poem spills out the emotions I was feeling at the time of writing and, while many believe they are alone in how they feel, through me they can find an outlet for their adversity. What we feel is true and real; and it’s what makes each and every one of us unique and special. I believe that everyone can learn a lot about their life and the world by immersing themselves in my work.”
With the book’s popularity increasing, interested readers are urged to purchase their copies as soon as possible.
‘When I Sense Emotions’, published by Lulu, is available now: http://bit.ly/1iBb9yq.
For more information, follow the author on Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1kXVRbs.
Contact:
Devon Phipps
3125049791

June 19th Job Fair to Connect Employers & Job Seekers Real Employers – Real Jobs

Posted by Admin On June - 18 - 2014 ADD COMMENTS
ARLINGTON HTS., IL – Illinois workNet will host a Community Job Fair featuring a variety of companies in manufacturing, healthcare, retail, financial, foodservice and more that are hiring right now.
The following organizations are co-sponsoring this Job Fair:  Illinois Department of Employment Security, The Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership, Illinois workNet, Business and Career Services Inc., and National Able. All job-seekers are invited to this program. Business and Career Services Inc. continues to connect local employers to job seekers and put Illinois residents back to work.
“Many businesses will be represented at this job fair. These employers are hiring for multiple positions. If you don’t think there are jobs out there –think again,” said Mohammed Faheem, Director Business Employer Solutions & Corporate Relations, Business and Career Services.
To view participating employers and open jobs, job seekers should visit www.worknetncc.com. Faheem added, “Come prepared by researching companies, applying online and bringing targeted resumes for these jobs.”
WHEN:                                 Thursday, June 19, 2014
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
(Veteran’s Priority Access 9:30a – 10a/General Public 10a-2p.)
WHAT:                                 Recruiters may be accepting résumés and conducting on-site interviews.
WHERE:                               Schaumburg Public Library
130 S. Roselle Road, Schaumburg, IL
INFORMATION: www.worknetncc.com (A list of participating companies with job openings is available now. Check back for updates.)

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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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