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December , 2017
Saturday

EVANSTON, IL - Piccolo Theatre Ensemble's 13th Annual Holiday Panto for kids and family ...
Irvington, NJ (BlackNews.com) -- Craig A. Garner, Poet Laureate of Irvington, N.J./author has ...
Democratic candidate for Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios on Thursday issued an apology for making ...
  Chief Cook County Medical Examiner Dr. Stephen Cina was elected this week as vice ...
Will discuss importance of trade with India; growth in renewable energy   Chicago, IL – Lt. Governor ...
  At Goodman Theatre, March 26 – April 24, 2011 Cecilie Kennan directs this World-Premiere Teatro ...
  Urban garden roots public health, local food economy movement   CHICAGO, IL –  An advocate for local ...
BALTIMORE, M.D. – On Wednesday, Oct. 8, 2014, NAACP President and CEO Cornell William ...
Fredericksburg, VA (BlackNews.com) -  The University of Mary Washington will launch a semester-long celebration of the ...
President Barack Obama:  "...Before Jay takes some of your questions, I wanted to provide ...

Archive for May 22nd, 2017

NAACP Chairmen: ‘Today is the First Day of our Next 100 Years’

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS
By Derrick Johnson and Leon W. RussellOp-Ed Published on NBCBLK

 

When the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) was founded in 1909, there were a number of undeniably stark realities facing black Americans that the creation of the NAACP sought to overcome.
We worked to create a future in which a black American could walk down a street without the fear of being lynched.We wanted black Americans to be able to exercise their right to vote efficiently and effectively, without being beaten, jailed or persecuted for doing so. We dreamt of a world in which black children would be able to receive the same education as their white peers, one that would permit their parents the opportunity to fulfill the great American Dream of leaving the next generation better off than they.

 

After more than 100 years of pushing against the same challenges, what do we do now?In 2017, a black American still cannot walk down a street, drive a car, play on the playground or enter their own home at night without the fear of being shot, beaten or harassed by their neighbors or their very own police – the individuals ironically pledged to protect him.

 

Gerrymandering and other voter suppression tactics like ID laws have made it increasingly difficult and in some cases impossible for black Americans and other communities of color to participate in our nation’s democratic elections. Many are so dissuaded by the expectation that their vote may not count — or will count against them and the safety of their community — often elect not to vote at all.

Almost two decades into the turn of the century and yet millions of black children are still taught in segregated and underserved school – and not just in the South. It is New York City that is home to the most segregated school district in the United States. And at the same time, the gap between the college graduation rates for white students and black students is only increasing, putting that American Dream ever farther out of reach.

And though the people did choose a black American to occupy the Oval Office, following his historic presidency, America elected a president who unapologetically sows division, appeals to right-wing extremists and threatens to fundamentally change the direction of our nation – for the worse.

For many, this moment – the realization of how little has still changed amidst such progress – is demoralizing. While our history will mark this moment as one of incredible public engagement, with individuals of all genders and ages taking to the streets and to town halls, it is also a moment of despair and fear.

When the parents of black children like 15-year-old Jordan Edwards – who became the 105th victim of police violence this year – must kiss them goodbye in the morning with the fear that they will not come home safe that evening, what hope is there?

At the NAACP, we know that question all too well – and we have faced it all too often over our century plus. We too stand at a crossroads. After more than 100 years of pushing against the same challenges, what do we do now?
The answer is this: We’re not going to agonize – we’re going to organize.

True to our legacy, the NAACP has never shied away from change – in fact, our mission has been to embrace it. And that is exactly what we will do again now, in three main actions.

First, we will refresh our leadership and our priorities. It is clear that we must find new ways to confront head-on the many challenges presented by today’s uncertain political, media and social climate. That will require new perspectives and new voices, to both help us carve out that new path and communicate to the next generation of activists and advocates.

When you have been doing the same thing for 100 years, you cannot expect continued impact – we need to change our vision in order to be the nimble and innovative civil rights organization that our nation needs today.
Second, while we search for our organization’s next leader to take the helm, we will begin be conducting a comprehensive assessment of our infrastructure and operations, as part of a strategic re-envisioning. We want to better understand – and hear directly from our members – what we do well and what we can do better.

How are we working on the ground to address the modern-day threats to our civil rights? How can our Executive Team support those efforts? We know that our branches are what make our organization unique – they are carrying out local work with national importance – and we want to ensure that every single one of them has the platform that they need in order to keep fighting for the rights of black Americans to live free from harm and oppression.
And third, and most importantly, we will hear from you, the American people.

In the coming months, our leadership will embark on a listening tour, for the first time in our history. It is clear that Americans of all genders and ages, from all of the corners of all 50 states, have been aching to be understood, to be seen – and now, they are demanding to be heard. We want to meet those demands, and in doing so, ensure that we are harnessing the energy and voice of our grassroots membership as we pursue transformational change.

As we reimagine ourselves, we want to be formed in the likeliness of the people whom we serve – and to do so, we must first see, meet and listen to them.

Amidst this transformation, one thing will never falter – our steadfast and unmovable commitment to fighting for justice and equality for our community. The times may change, but the NAACP has never been readier to face them.
We will continue to advocate for the advancement of communities of color in this country, stronger and more resilient than ever before.

Today is the first day of our next 100 years.

Leon W. Russell is the Chairman of the NAACP Board of Directors, and Derrick Johnson is the Vice-Chairman.

Click the link below to read the NBCblk artice:
http://www.nbcnews.com/news/nbcblk/naacp-chairmen-today-first-day-our-next-100-years-n762216

Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Foundation to Host Criminal Justice Symposium

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS
SPRINGFIELD, IL – According to the NAACP, African Americans now constitute nearly 1 million of the total 2.3 million incarcerated population, while only accounting for 13 percent of the population. These numbers are indicative of the need for further reforms. The Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Foundation (ILBCF) is hosting a Criminal Justice Symposium to explore different policy initiatives that have been suggested and implemented, and discuss solutions to end the inequality. The ILBCF will be issuing its criminal justice report, which outlines the Black Caucus’ Criminal Justice agenda for this year’s General Assembly.
Below is a list of panelists and the issues they will be discussing:
 
Pretrial Administration and Bail Reform
·         Attorney Sierra Senor-Moore
·         State Representative Carol Ammons (D-Champaign/Urbana)
Sentencing
·         Faith Coalition for the Common Good – Reginald Dale
·         State Senator Patricia Van Pelt (D-Chicago)
Policing:
·         Executive Director of Social Changes – Todd Belcore
·         State Representative Jehan Gordon-Booth (D-Peoria)
 
The ILBCF Criminal Justice Symposium will be hosted at:
African American History Museum
1440 Monument Dr. Springfield IL 62702
Monday, May 22, 2017
5:45 PM-6:30 PM Reception
6:30 PM-8:00 PM Presentation
This event is also being co-sponsored by the following: Faith Coalistion for the Common Good/ CUJO, NAACP, Delta Sigma Theta, Omega Psi Phi, Kit it 200, Springfield Black Chamber of Commerce, Illinois Democratic Chairman’s Association, The Outlet, Alderman Doris Turner, Attorney Sierra Senor – Moore, State Senator Andy Manar, Zeta Phi Beta, Alpha Phi Alpha, Illinois Treasurer Michael Frerichs

Real Men Cook’s Father Day Celebration 2017 to Continue Commitment to Wellness at all Locations

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Real Men Cook’s Father’s Day Celebration will continue its long tradition of serving healthy foods and promoting nutrition when it holds its event at a variety of locations this year. The celebration takes place on Father’s Day:  Sunday, June 18 from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.

In making the announcement, Ayinde Cartman – Executive Director – Real Men Charities — noted that this year’s celebration will mark the 28th anniversary of this iconic Father’s Day Celebration. He added that each host site will bring their own unique flavor to the event but are committed to support Real Men Cook’s tradition to incorporate healthy foods into their food offerings.  So, in addition to barbecue ribs, and chicken, and other tasty tidbits, there will be salads, raw foods, grilled and roasted vegetables, fruits and baked fish and chicken.

In keeping with Healthy Chicago 2.0 Plan and its attention to trauma in our communities, Real Men Cook is including a focus on mental health awareness, an initiative the Charities has been involved in for 26 years in association with internationally respected psychiatrist, Dr. Carl Bell, who has done outstanding work in this area. Dr. Obari Cartman, psychologist and author, will be on site at various locations discussing issues that relate to trauma.  He will make a special effort to reach out to young male attendees.

Yvette Moyo and Kofi Moyo, co-founders, added that the University of Chicago Medicine, a sponsor since 2008, has always focused on providing healthy foods in keeping with the mission that Real Men Charities, the presenting nonprofit, promotes.

NextLevel Health, which joined Real Men Cook as a sponsor in 2016, continues its sponsorship this year.  Staff will serve dishes and be the anchor sponsor on the West Side of Chicago, partnering with BBF Family Services and leading men, including BBF’s Chief Executive Officer Rufus Williams, Executive Chef Erick Williams of mk The Restaurant, Alderman Michael Scott and Commissioner Robert Steele. This event takes place at Douglas Park, 1401 S. Sacramento.
Ms. Moyo noted that many health crises that disproportionately affect African Americans can be addressed through healthy eating, exercise and minor lifestyle adjustments.  With that as a mission, a select number of veteran event cooks will prepare healthy dishes that are good for maintaining heart health, preventing and managing diabetes, and addressing obesity.

Chaga Walton and his team, including four generations of family members, have donated their time and talents to Real Men Cook for all 28 years. They will serve his legendary kale salad, which is nutritious and delicious.

Many of the dishes that will be served can be found in the Moyos’ book, REAL MEN COOK Rites, Rituals and Recipes for Living, and in the soft cover book Real Men Cook: 100 Easy Recipes Celebrating Tradition and Family published by Simon & Shuster, which includes the foreword by former President Barack Obama.

Cartman declared that Real Men Cook is proud to be bringing the wellness message to the new format because, he said, healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle helps save lives.”

For more information on Real Men Cook 2017, log on to www.Realmencook.com
    

 

 

Teachers at Chicago’s Passages Elementary to Strike May 25 – First Charter Strike in U.S. History

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

 

Management won’t budge on opposition to financial transparency, insistence on bottom-of-the-barrel spending on immigrant and refugee students and frontline staff.

 

CHICAGO, IL – Union educators at Passages Charter School announced that they will formally strike — and hit the picket lines — on May 25 if they are unable to reach a fair contract agreement with charter management by midnight, May 24. Teachrers voted unanimously to strike on May 4, but held off from setting a date in the hopes that management would move from a hardline stance that includes rock-bottom wages, elimination of maternity and paternity leave, opposition to greater financial transparency, and insufficient resources to support classrooms.

 

Passages was one of the first charter schools created in Chicago, and today serves just under 500 students — including a large population of immigrant and refugee students of Asian and African heritage. Passages 47 union educators — teachers, teachers assistants and paraprofessionals — were certified last April as members of ChiACTS Local 4343, which represents 32 charter schools in Chicago. The school’s educators have been negotiating for a new contract since May of 2016.

The Passages strike would be the first of a charter school network in the nation.

“We really believe in the mission of this school and the students we serve, and it’s time for management to provide the resources we need to carry out that mission,” said third grade teacher Gina Mengarelli, a member of Passages’ ChiACTS bargaining team. “None of us wants to strike – we want to be in our classrooms with our students. And our bargaining team is committed to continuing to negotiate in good faith with AHS in hopes of reaching a fair contract. But if it takes a strike to force AHS to make changes that improve the education of Passages’ students, then we will be on the picket line until we achieve those improvements.”

Passages’ refugee and immigrant students look to the school as an environment to support the hopes and dreams they bring to their new country. But management is failing those aspirations, say educators, by spending too much money on top brass and overhead compared to other single-site charters, and too little on staff and students. Many teachers with BAs and even master’s degrees earn salaries in the $30,000 – $40,000 range for work weeks that can top 60 hours. Spending on students’ education at Passages is also at rock bottom among comparable publicly funded charter schools in Chicago.

“One of the core reasons educators formed a union at Passages was to have more voice in decisions that affect their students,” said ChiACTS president Chris Baehrend. “We’ve been bargaining for a year for a contract that gives us that voice, and guarantees fair working conditions for teachers and staff and fair learning conditions for our students. Yet AHS to date has refused to make us an offer that provides for these most basic of demands. If it takes a strike to convince management that it’s time to put students and the teachers who are the backbone of their education first, then we have no choce but to strike.”

Management has not skimped on salaries for itself. For the most recent year for which figures are available, AHS — Asian Human Services, the agency that runs Passages — paid $540,000 in total to two people, their current and former CEOs — that’s over $1,000 per student in compensation for those two positions alone, compared to CPS CEO Forrest Claypool’s compensation of less than $2 per student. The current and former CEOs of AHS together earned more than double that of Claypool, the CEO of Chicago Public Schools, who earns $250,000 per year to run a system of just under 400,000 students. By way of comparison, the combined current salaries for Passages’ 47 bargaining unit members is $1.7 million, with teachers’ compensation averaging over 20% lower than that at comparable Chicago charter schools..

Despite repeated requests and FOIA filings, management has refused to make detailed financial information available to the bargaining team. That lack of financial transparency is now the subject of a pending claim with the Illinois Attorney General’s Public Access Bureau. Teachers are calling for greater fiscal oversight at the school — including improvements in the percentage of dollars that management spends on students instead of on its own compensation.

AHS spends a greater percentage of the Passages school budget on management costs and a lower percentage on direct student and personnel costs than every other single- site charter in the city except one. The average single-site charter spends a quarter on management and overhead for every dollar they spend on school staff and students, whereas Passages spends fifty cents for every dollar. Passages is also an outlier when it comes to teacher salaries, with teachers earning 20% less than teachers at other Chicago charters. That low spending level for the school’s dedicated teachers and staff lands Passages far below the average in budget comparisons across charters.

Union members charge that the disparity in salaries for Passages educators and those at other charters is driven by AHS mismanagement of funds and the fact that AHS simply does not contribute enough to the school’s budget from its own funds. Chicago’s other single-site charters typically provide 5-10% of their financial resources from private fundraising revenue — a practice touted in the early days of the CPS push for charters as a way to harness private dollars to support publicly funded education. Passages raises zero dollars from private fundraising revenue.

Passages’ union educators returned to the bargaining table on Friday just after announcing their strike date.

 

IDOT, Law Enforcement Urge Motorists to ‘Click It or Ticket’ as Summer Travel Season Begins

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Illinois to participate in multistate ‘Border to Border’ crackdown

 

SPRINGFIELD, IL – As Memorial Day approaches, the Illinois Department of Transportation and state and local law enforcement agencies are joining forces to remind motorists to wear their seat belts and avoid impaired driving.

“Wearing your seat belt is the law, but it’s also a matter of common sense,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “Making the right choice to buckle up, every time, no matter where you are seated, substantially increases your chance of survival in the event of a crash. By buckling up and avoiding impaired driving, you can help keep Illinois roads safer for all who are traveling.”

Motorists can expect to see increased patrols and enforcement zones throughout Illinois as part of IDOT’s “Click It or Ticket” campaign. To help kick off the campaign, law enforcement agencies throughout Illinois will join neighboring states Monday, May 22, from 4 to 8 p.m., in mobilizing the national “Border to Border” Operation, sending a zero-tolerance message to the public that driving or riding unbuckled will result in a ticket, no matter what state.

These unified efforts to crack down on unbuckled and impaired drivers come at a time when traffic fatalities are on the rise. Illinois has seen an increase in motor vehicle fatalities over the last two years. According to 2015 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data, 42 percent of nationwide motor vehicle fatalities involved unbuckled vehicle occupants.

Seat belts are designed to keep you positioned safely in a vehicle. Should a crash occur, a seat belt helps slow down the body, works in conjunction with the air bag and spreads force over a wider area of the body, lessening the likelihood of injury or ejection.

“You can safeguard the lives of your passengers and fellow motorists simply by buckling up,” said Illinois State Police Director Leo P. Schmitz. “Whether you’re traveling block-to-block or border-to-border, make sure every occupant in your vehicle is wearing their seat belt.”

For more information on the “Click It or Ticket” mobilization, visit buckleupillinois.org.

Madigan & 14 Attorneys General Urge Department of Justice to Rescind Harsh New Sentencing Guidelines

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

 

Coalition Calls on Attorney General Sessions to Reverse Sentencing Guidance

 

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan joined with 14 of her counterparts from around the country to call on U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions to rescind harsh new instructions for Department of Justice (DOJ) prosecutors to seek long sentences for offenders. The attorneys general urged Sessions to adopt data-driven approaches to criminal justice policy that are better for public safety, more fiscally sound, and more just than mandatory minimum sentences for low-level offenders.

 

In a letter sent to Sessions, Madigan and the attorneys general write that “there is a strong and bipartisan national consensus that the harsh sentencing practices reflected in the new DOJ policy announced last week do not increase public safety, and that consensus is supported by strong data.”

 

Additionally, they say that “the new DOJ policy runs contrary not only to this consensus, but also to basic principles of equal justice and sound fiscal policy.”

 

“Pursuing the toughest criminal penalties against defendants is an outdated approach that has not lowered recidivism rates or reduced crime,” Attorney General Madigan said. “We need the Justice Department to be at the forefront of implementing proven policies to reform our criminal justice system in ways that lower prison populations and make our communities safer.”

 

Joining Madigan in sending today’s letter were attorneys general from: California, Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington.

 

A copy of the letter can be found here.

 

Rep. Harper to Help Immigrants Understand Their Constitutional Rights

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois State Rep. Sonya Harper, D-Chicago, is joining the National Immigrant Justice Center to help connect immigrants with legal resources and help them train for encounters with law enforcement at her Know Your Rights Seminar that will be on Saturday, June 11 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m at the Sherman Park Library Branch, located at 5440 S. Racine Ave. in Chicago.

 

“Due to the Trump administration’s abuse of power, people won’t leave their homes due to fear of being racially profiled and deported, despite being proud Americans. I want people to understand what they are legally able to do if law-enforcement unconstitutionally stops them,” Harper said. “No one should be living in a state of fear of their government illegally deporting them and taking them away from their families.”

 

Harper is partnering with the National Immigrant Justice Center to provide and update immigrants about their constitutional rights. During the event, representatives from the NJIC will review existing legal options for immigrants to be prepared for potential encounters with law enforcement, as well as develop a safety plan with attendees to further enhance necessary preparations.

 

 

Who: State Rep. Sonya HarperNational Justice Immigrant CenterWhat: Know Your Rights SeminarWhen: Saturday, June 1111 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.Where: Sherman Park Branch5440 S Racine AveChicago, IL 60609

Negotiating Team Outlines House Democrats’ Economic Reform Proposals

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL – House Democrats seeking common ground with Gov. Bruce Rauner in order to end the budget stalemate and put the state on a path to fiscal stability are asking the governor to consider their reform proposals that will improve the business climate while lifting up the middle class.

“House Democrats believe the budget crisis demands immediate action, and it is our hope to show Governor Rauner that we stand ready to work with him,” state Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie said. “We plan to seek common ground with the governor on his proposals, and present him with items we believe should be part of the bargaining in order to encourage economic growth while lifting up the middle class.”

Last week, House Speaker Michael J. Madigan appointed Currie and House Leaders Lou Lang, Arthur Turner and Jay Hoffman to work with Rauner to find compromise on issues unrelated to the state budget.

The legislators plan to present the governor with House Democratic Caucus proposals that will improve the business climate while lifting up the middle class. While the governor has prioritized changes to the workers’ compensation system, Democrats are pushing for additional reforms that would prohibit insurance companies in Illinois from eliminating an insurance policy due to a pre-existing condition and would also create an Insurance Rate Review Board to prevent insurance companies from unfairly gouging consumers.

The House negotiators also plan to ask Rauner to stand with Democrats in working to close corporate loopholes that allow large businesses to pay nothing in taxes. House Democrats have prioritized cutting the overall corporate income tax to level the playing field for small and medium-sized employers, while also cracking down on large corporations that game the system to avoid paying anything in taxes.

“House Democrats have put forward a number of reforms that address the governor’s goals, and we will continue pushing ideas that will strengthen the economy while also lifting up the middle class,” Lang said. “We believe we can create jobs without hurting the people who work in those jobs every day. We look forward to working with the governor to find common ground and move this conversation forward by discussing his ideas in depth, and presenting him with ideas of our own.”   

Another Victory in the Struggle Against Police Crimes

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

 

From: Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression

 

Patrick Prince was released from prison on Tuesday after State’s Attorney Kim Foxx’s office dropped all the charges against him. Prince has been in prison for 26 years, wrongfully charged and convicted based solely on a confession extracted through police torture.

 

Frank Chapman, hailed the release, noting that “The release of Patrick Prince is another victory in the struggle by tens of thousands of people throughout the Chicago Area against police crimes, especially the torture and wrongful conviction of Black and Latino young men,” Chapman declared. “We call on State’s Attorney Foxx to free all people who have consistently claimed they confessed under torture.”

 

Chapman is Field Organizer of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression (CAARPR), and Chairperson of the Stop Police Crimes Organizing Committee (SPCOC).

 

The CAARPR and SPCOC have organized 50,000 people to sign petitions and postcards addressed to their aldermen demanding passage of the ordinance creating an all-elected Civilian Police Accountability Council (CPAC), which would have the power to end and prevent police killings and torture by referring these torture cops for prosecution.

 

“There are still over a hundred police torture victims in prison,” Chapman noted. He called on Gov. Bruce Rauner to pardon all these torture victims. “It isn’t necessary for the State’s Attorney to have to look individually at each case,” Chapman said. “The Governor has the Constitutional power to pardon all these victims of torture and free them with the stroke of a pen.

 

“We join with the mothers, fathers, sisters and brothers of these men who have been tirelessly campaigning for justice in the cases of their loved ones who are victims of the police crime of torture. The criterion for pardon should be very simple:

  1. The victim claimed his innocence from the beginning.
  2. The victim accused the police of wresting a false confession through torture.

 

“That’s it. That’s all the Governor needs to free these men through Executive Pardon TODAY!”

 

 

As Obama Invites Next Generation to ‘Take Their Own Crack at Changing the World,’ Chicago Youth Answer ‘Yes We Can’

Posted by Admin On May - 22 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS
350 teen problem-solvers from 60 schools gather to present solutions to Chicago’s toughest issues at Mikva’s Action Civics Showcase

 CHICAGO, IL – Encouraged by Obama’s call to young people, “to take up the baton,” Chicago youth will gather to showcase their year-long activism effort to better their schools and neighborhoods at the Mikva Challenge 15th Annual Action Civics Showcase on May 23, 2017 at the Chicago Cultural Center. Mikva Challenge will host the Showcase in partnership with the Chicago Public Schools Office of Civic Engagement and Service Learning. Youth will meet political and community leaders at the Showcase and will be awarded badges for civic action, research and community building.

To stand-up against current immigration policies, youth leaders at Benito Juarez Academy are engaging lawmakers on the local, state, and national level. To increase teen employment in the summer, youth from Excel Academy in Marquette Park organized a job fair with over 25 businesses offering employment opportunities. To increase youth engagement in local politics, youth from Sullivan High School drafted a project proposal to be put on the ballot for the 49th Ward PB process, and they also launched a GOTV campaign to get their peers to vote.

“I’m working Mikva for the recycling project and each day we collect food that so many students throw away. This food could be given to those that actually need it. Saving food also helps students see that they are wasting most of not, not eating it, and that throwing it away is just wrong,” said Khadijah Zaki from Mather High School, who is working on a food recycling and waste elimination project this year with her peers.

The Action Civics Showcase is a culminating event of our Democracy in Action program that had 2,500 youth participants from over 60 schools throughout the Chicagoland area this year. Here’s a complete list of all our projects and schools that will be presenting at the Showcase on May 23rd.
When: Tuesday, May 23, 2017 from 4pm-6pm
Where: Cultural Center, 78 E Washington, Chicago, IL 60602

Visuals: Over 350 young people will have their project on display at the event. You’ll also see teachers, principals, politicians and community leaders at the event

Action Civics Showcase 2017 – Project Highlights

School

Project Title

Description

Benito Juarez Community Academy 

Lobbying to stop anti-immigrant policies

Angered and frustrated by immigration policies coming out of the White House and the negative impact it was having on the school community, youth leaders decided to take action. The group is planning a year long lobbying campaign to influence lawmakers in Springfield and D.C. to change immigration policies through lobbying and launching a story-telling project on youth impacted by these policies.

Julian High School 

Peace Week

In response to a tragedy that took a student’s life in 2012, youth leaders have organized themselves to lead a Peace Day and now a Peace Week every year in their school. As part of their final project, the group will be hosting a Peace Summit to empower teens to discuss societal issues and create peace within themselves, within their schools and within their communities.

Chicago Excel Academy, Southwest

 

Connecting Youth to Jobs

Worried and frustrated with the high rate of youth unemployment in the Marquette Park neighborhood, youth and teachers collaborated to bring over 25 businesses and other agencies to a school-wide employment fair.

Fenger High School

More opportunities for Black Men

Recognizing the dearth of role models and access to good leadership opportunities for black men in their neighborhood, youth leaders worked on creating pathways to fill that gap. They met with Chicago Bears player Charles Tillman to talk about challenges they face, and are also regularly meeting with community leaders to bring more jobs to black men in their school.

Marquette Elementary

Fill a Tote for Hope

In order to address the issue of homelessness in their community, youth at Marquette researched the number of displaced families and individuals living in Chicago Law and then designed a campaign called Filled A Tote for Hope! They packaged a 100 tote bags filled with hygiene products, clothes etc to distribute to the homeless on April Fools Day.

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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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