17
August , 2017
Thursday

    WASHINGTON, DC Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch: Good morning and thank you all for being here.  I ...
Masterfully crafted by Annie Tsotas, ‘Harlequin Confessions’ is a unique compilation of spiritual poetry – ...
The Cook County State’s Attorney Office has filed a consumer fraud lawsuit against a Chicago ...
ProPublica investigation exposing disparities based on ZIP code prompts new legislation   CHICAGO, IL  – Illinois State ...
Letters To Editors Exonerate Kenneth Clair: DNA Evidence Points to Someone Else Petitioning Todd Spitzer (Orange County ...
CHICAGO, IL - A public Memorial Service honoring longtime state leader Judy Baar ...
HIGHLIGHTS: Keynote Speaker: Leigh Anne Tuohy, Inspirational foster mom portrayed in "The Blind ...
Baltimore –The NAACP joined the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights in filing a ...
America's Twentieth-Century Slavery (Part 1 of an 11-part Series on Race in America - Past and ...
Exciting new infrastructure combined with growing ridership and a strong voice for advocacy has made ...

Archive for June 8th, 2017

Team of Chicago Journalists Sue Police for Withholding Gun Violence ‘Heat List’ Algorithm

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

From: Invisible Institute

 

Chicago Sun-Times, Jamie Kalven and other reporters join new Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against CPD

 

CHICAGO, IL – Journalists across the city have filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the Chicago Police Department for refusing to release public records. In the new lawsuit, the Chicago Sun-Times, along with journalists Jamie Kalven, Brandon Smith, and George Joseph, are suing CPD for withholding information about an algorithm that determines what citizens end up on the Strategic Subject List, known as a “heat list.” This list is a controversial computerized prediction of people allegedly likely to be a victim or perpetrator of gun violence.

“We have learned too many times that a lack of transparency into the Chicago Police Department leads to unconstitutional policing and violations of civil rights,” said Matthew Topic of Loevy & Loevy, the civil rights law firm handling the case. “While novel forms of policing like this aren’t necessarily bad, it’s crucial that the public know how these lists are generated and whether they result in discrimination and civil rights violations.”

One of the plaintiffs, Smith, was the journalist whose high-profile Freedom of Information Act lawsuit led to the release of the Laquan McDonald shooting video in November 2015. In addition, Kalven was the plaintiff in the watershed 2014 decision of the Illinois appellate court, Kalven v. City of Chicago, which established that closed investigations of police misconduct are public information.

This latest case comes on the heels of another lawsuit filed by Kalven, who is suing CPD for withholding investigation records from the Inspector General’s probe of the department’s handling of McDonald’s shooting death in 2014. The Inspector General’s exhaustive investigation details the operation of Chicago Police’s code of silence, what the lawsuit calls “the machinery of institutional denial that has allowed police abuse of members of the public to go unchecked.”

The Invisible Institute is a nonprofit Chicago-based journalism production company that works to enhance the capacity of civil society to hold public institutions accountable. Toward that end, we develop strategies to expand and operationalize transparency. We seek to make visible perspectives too often excluded from public discourse. And we develop social interventions designed to leverage necessary reforms. Among the tools we employ are human rights documentation, investigative reporting, civil rights litigation, the curating of public information, and the orchestration of difficult public conversations.

Loevy & Loevy is one of the nation’s largest civil rights law firms, and over the past decade has won more multi-million dollar jury verdicts than any other civil rights law firm in the entire country. In November 2015, Loevy & Loevy successfully obtained the release of the dashcam video of McDonald’s shooting death at the hands of Chicago police.

 

 

National Urban League Calls on the House to Reject the Financial Choice Act

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

 

Bill Seeks to Undo Key Dodd-Frank Reforms and Weaken Protections for Consumers

 

WASHINGTON, DC  – National Urban League President and CEO Marc H. Morial publicly released a letter sent to the entire U.S. House of Representatives this morning calling on them to reject the Financial Choice Act.  If passed this bill would upend important reforms enacted after the financial crisis of 2007-2008 and severely weaken the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

 

Morial’s full letter follows and is attached.

June 7, 2017

Dear Congressman –

I write today to urge you to vote against the Financial Choice Act also known as, the Wrong Choice Act. The Wrong Choice Act is a misguided attempt to repeal the Dodd-Frank Act, the landmark financial reform legislation that was enacted to protect American consumers from the excesses that caused the financial crisis less than 10 years ago. Introduced by Jeb Hensarling, Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, the Wrong Choice Act virtually wipes away all of the consumer protections established by Dodd-Frank, including weakening the effectiveness of the lauded Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The CFPB is a strong watchdog and a zealous advocate for the American people with a proven track-record of success. I oppose any efforts to dismantle Dodd-Frank and the CFPB, especially those based on ideologies not grounded in truth.

I have proudly served as the President and CEO of the National Urban League for nearly 15 years. The National Urban League is a historic civil rights organization focused on economic empowerment for communities of color. We have 88 affiliates in 36 states and the District of Columbia that provide direct services to 2 million people annually. We provide workforce training, afterschool programs, healthcare assistance, and housing counseling, among other impactful services to help lift-up the community. We saw and experienced firsthand the impact of lax federal regulations and the horrors of the financial crisis, which is why we supported the passage of Dodd-Frank and fiercely oppose any efforts to dismantle it.

As you know, African Americans suffered the brunt of the financial crisis. Twenty-five percent of the homes that were in foreclosure or deeply underwater during and after the crisis were owned by African Americans. Consequently, 50 percent of African Americans’ wealth was wiped out through no fault of their own, in most cases. Irresponsible borrowers did not cause the financial crisis–irresponsible products caused the crisis. Lenders steered African Americans into predatory products that they knew could not be repaid. Several mainstream banks were sued for reverse redlining, blatant housing discrimination of African Americans that helped caused the financial crisis.

Dodd-Frank was enacted to counter these excesses. There was broad consensus that Wall Street had to be reined in to protect consumers and to reenergize the economy. The CFPB was created to fight on behalf of consumers and to ensure another financial crisis of the kind and scope that created the Great Recession never happened again. It consolidated the departments of the seven federal financial agencies with consumer protection authority. The agency’s budget was funded through the Federal Reserve and not the appropriations process to ensure it could live out its mission: “to provide a single point of accountability for enforcing federal consumer financial laws and protecting consumers in the financial marketplace,” no matter the political climate.

Since its inception, the CFPB has proven its effectiveness as the nation’s top consumer protection watchdog. The CFPB promulgated the Qualified Mortgage rule and the Mortgage Servicing rule, which helped regulate the industry and ensure that subprime mortgages and the foreclosures that resulted would never happen again. Lenders can no longer offer mortgages without full documentation or charge excessive points and fees and servicers have to ensure borrowers are not forced into foreclosure. Banks cannot engage in redlining activities and other financial products in the market must have consumers’ wellbeing in mind. The CFPB has returned more than $12 billion to approximately 30 million aggrieved American consumers as a result.

The CFPB’s success has not hurt financial markets; it helped increase confidence in the market. Several studies have made this clear. Chairman Hensarling’s effort to weaken Dodd-Frank and the CFPB through the Wrong Choice Act is a deliberate attempt to bolster Wall Street to the detriment of Main Street. Opposition to Dodd-Frank and the CFPB is grounded in false ideology and will hurt American consumers. I urge you to oppose the Wrong Choice Act.

Sincerely,

Marc H. Morial

President and CEO

National Urban League 

Disenfranchisement News: New Alabama Law Allows More People With Felony Convictions to Vote…and More News

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

From: Marc Mauer, The Sentencing Project

Alabama

New law allows more people with felony convictions to vote

Governor Kay Ivey recently signed the Definition of Moral Turpitude Act, which could restore voting rights to thousands of Alabamians with felony records. Previously, Alabama law stripped people of their right to vote if they committed a “felony involving moral turpitude,” but the state never provided a definitive list of such felonies. Thus, the decision of who was allowed to vote varied from county to county and was essentially left up to the local registrars. The new law establishes a list of less than 50 crimes of moral turpitude and notably excludes low-level drug offenses like possession—the most common felony conviction in the state.

According to the New York Times Editorial Board, this law is a step in the right direction but still far from ideal. There is no plan for informing previously ineligible voters that they may now be able to vote. And more importantly, “there’s neither sound logic nor evidence to support the disenfranchisement of anyone with a criminal conviction. To the contrary, evidence suggests that keeping prisoners connected to their civic responsibilities makes it easier for them to rejoin society,” writes the Editorial Board.

Nebraska

Legislature fails to override governor’s veto of voting rights bill

The Legislature failed to override Governor Pete Ricketts’ veto of a bill that would have restored voting rights to people with felony convictions as soon as they have completed their prison, probation or parole sentence.  The current law, which was adopted in 2005, reduced the state’s indefinite ban on post-sentence voting to a two-year waiting period. The Legislature fell short of the 30 votes needed to override the governor’s veto with a 23-23 vote.

Gov. Ricketts said he vetoed the bill because it was unconstitutional, arguing that the Constitution must first be amended before voting rights can be restored. “While the legislature may restore certain privileges, such as driving privileges, to convicted felons, the legislature may not circumvent the Nebraska Constitution to automatically restore a voting right in state law.”

“I am shocked that in 2017 we are still fighting for basic fundamental rights such as voting,” said the bill’s sponsor, Sen. Justin Wayne of Omaha, after the governor’s veto. “I cannot accept that this overtly political action could succeed in suppressing the voices of many who have made a mistake, want to return to their homes and contribute to their communities by getting jobs and paying taxes.”

Florida

Samantha Bee takes on Florida’s harsh felony disenfranchisement laws

Comedian Samantha Bee criticized Florida’s lifetime ban on voting for people with felony convictions and the state’s overly complicated process to restore voting rights on her TBS show, Full Frontal. Bee sat down with Desmond Meade and Neil Volz (a Republican) of Floridians for a Fair Democracy, a group that is collecting 700,000 signatures to put a voting rights referendum on the 2018 ballot. The ballot measure would automatically restore voting rights to most individuals upon completion of their prison, probation or parole sentence. Meade and Volz emphasized that this is not a political issue and the state’s harsh laws impact individuals across the political spectrum. While the original version of the law was created in the 19th century to target African Americans and does disproportionately impact black people, it also affects over a million non-black residents.

You can watch the segments using the links below:

https://youtu.be/TODP7c9BwXw

National

U.S. Commission on Civil Rights holds hearing on collateral consequences

The U.S. Commission on Civil Rights recently held a hearing to address the significant hurdles people with felony convictions face when they reenter society. The hearing explored a range of issues including: long-lasting effects of incarceration, recidivism, and racial disparities; barriers to voting and jury participation; and barriers to public housing, employment, public benefits and other basic needs after incarceration.

In his testimony, Marc Mauer of The Sentencing Project’s described the troubling impact felony disenfranchisement policies have on individuals with felony convictions and our democracy as a whole. “Felony disenfranchisement policies run counter to public safety objectives by creating a group of second-class citizens,” said Mauer. “In order for people to successfully transition home from prison they need to establish or renew connections with the world of work, family, peer groups, and the broader community. Participation in the electoral process is one means by which citizens can affirm their connection to the broader community and play a constructive role in public policy debates.”

Cook County Board Approves Five Tax Incentives Designed to Support Economic Growth

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Cook County Commissioners approved five proposals from President Toni Preckwinkle’s Bureau of Economic Development (BED) that will provide tax incentives to businesses in Cook County.

The incentives, which will either create new or save existing jobs, were approved in the following communities: Oak Forest, Rolling Meadows, Schaumburg, South Holland and Streamwood.

As a result of redevelopment activities, these incentives should support the creation of an estimated 13 new private sector full-time jobs, retain an estimated 230 full-time jobs and support seven construction jobs.

“The companies receiving these incentives have demonstrated their commitment to our communities and residents,” Preckwinkle said. “I’m pleased that we are able to use our tax incentive tools to either keep or expand businesses in Cook County.”

Details on the incentives follow, listed by municipality:

·         Business Name: Best Western Hotel,  4375 Frontage Road, Oak Forest

Type of Business: Hospitality

Project Description: Improvements to the lobby, breakfast area, pool, exterior and technology upgrades. The applicant will continue to do business as a Best Western Hotel.

Type of Incentive: Class 8

Estimated: eight full-time jobs created; 10 full-time jobs retained; two construction jobs supported

·         Business Name:Steel Supply Company, 5105 Newport Drive, Rolling Meadows

Type of Business: Distributor and processor of steel finish bars

Project Description: In addition to being a distributor and processor of steel finish bars, the applicant also provides warehousing and logistic services for buyers of raw steel. Property has been successfully occupied for 47 years. The applicant wants the incentive to make enhancements allowing them to remain competitive.

Type of Incentive: Class 6B-SER – considered temporary and non-renewable

Estimated:  51 full-time jobs retained

·         Business Name: Mercury Products Corporation, 1201 S. Mercury Drive, Schaumburg

Type of Business: Manufacturing of custom-engineered, stamped or fabricated products

Description: Incentive will allow applicant to upgrade facility and add new equipment.

Type of Incentive: Class 6B-SER – considered temporary and non-renewable

Estimated: 115 full time jobs retained

·         Business Name: Eagle Express Lines, 16901 Van Dam Road, South Holland

Type of Business: Truck repair and storage

Project Description: Applicant is expanding the facility.

Type of Incentive: Class 8

Estimated: three full-time jobs created; 50 full time jobs retained; five construction jobs supported

·         Business Name: Hallmark Industries, Inc., 411 East North Avenue, Streamwood

Type of Business: Wholesale distributor of industrial machinery such as industrial motors, gear reducers and water pumps

Project Description: Applicant is relocating and expanding operation from 6,800 square feet to the subject 23,520 square feet location, which it will own.

Type of Incentive: Class 6B

Estimated: Two full-time jobs created; four full-time jobs retained

For more about the tax incentive programs offered by the Cook County Bureau of Economic Development, go to www.cookcountyil.gov/economicdevelopment.

4th Annual Black on Black Crime Solutions Panel Lands in Miami

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Black on Black Crime Solutions Panel

Consists of Urban League T. Willard Fair, Miami-Dade Public Defender Carlos Martinez, and Others-
Miami, FL (BlackNews.com) –  “Empowermentorship – The Power of Mentorship” is the theme for the 4th Annual Black On Black Crime Solutions Panel. The Broward County based organization has moved its momentum to Miami-Dade College/North on June 10, 2017 from 11am to 2pm. Courage To Believe International is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization lead by a team of mentors best known for their C2B Chess Club & Mentoring Program. As an at-risk youth mentoring group they were able to spread their wings south with an interesting group of panelist from both counties. They’ll be highlighting a few of South Florida’s most influential mentoring programs, including those that focus mainly on Caribbean youth, specifically Haitian teenagers.

Every year, there are 6,000 to 9,000 violent black on black cases since 1980. This isn’t to make light of the fact that there are hundreds per year of police brutality cases against the African American community. Records show that gun violence in Miami-Dade had killed six children and 88 teenagers in the last three years. In 2016, Miami-Dade Medical Examiner’s Office reported 80 out of the 94 gun homicide victims, who were ages 18 and under, were black males.

Hence, the first Annual Black On Black Crime Solutions Panel was given birth three years ago by King Kevin Dorival, mentor and author of the inspirational autobiography and stage play, Courage To Believe. Why? Something tangible needed to be done on the grassroots level. “I have over fifteen family and friends incarcerated. They’re all young black men with children they can’t raise while serving 15 years to life sentences in prison, and all of their cases have one common dominator – GUNS! Black males are playing checkers while the criminal justice system is playing chess. I wish that we could get a sponsor and more financial support from our people to keep our event going for as long as it takes to change the political culture and the ongoing economic deprivation that’s destroying our community,” says Mr. Dorival.

Television host James Pierre, will be hosting the event – the panelist: President of Concerned of African Women Carolyn “Kiani” Nesbitt, Public Defender, Carlos Martinez, Urban League of Greater Miami President and CEO T. Willard Fair, Mayor of Opa-Locka Taylor and a surprise guest!

This free event takes place at Miami-Dade College/North Campus building 2000, room 2158, located at 11380 NW 27th Ave, Miami, FL 33167. Featured performances by the world-renowned Bush family’s B.G. Harmonies, a young African-American symphony group! There will be live entertainment, food, and a chance for the community to ask some of the most influential people of South Florida questions.

For more information on how you can support or volunteer, call 954-263-8223, or follow them on Instagram (@Courage2Believe) and Twitter (@Courage2Believe). Also, visit www.kevindorival.com.

Photo Caption: Panelists and performers at the 3rd annual #BlackOnBlackCrime Solutions Panel in July 2016

 

Golden State Warriors Leaving Oakland? Black Leaders Being Alerted

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Coalition formed to alert black leaders and community activists of the Golden State Warriors’ plans to relocate from Oakland to San Francisco

 
Coalition members are asking, “Why would elected officials of San Francisco covet the Golden State Warriors when San Francisco already has a $14 billion annual tourism industry, and Oakland has only a $800 million annual tourism industry?” 

 

New Golden State Warriors Arena in San Francisco

San Francisco, CA (BlackNews.com) – The San Francisco Department of Elections has vetted the Good Neighbor Coalition, granting it permission to proceed with collecting the required number of signatures, for a local ballot measure for the June 2018 election that greatly affects one of the National Basketball Association’s best teams, the Golden State Warriors.

In support of the entire community of Oakland, California, the measure aims to set the record straight: San Franciscans overwhelming do not support the covetous manner its own elected officials employed in facilitating the Warriors plans to move from the team’s 45 years in Oakland, CA across the bay to The City.

Coalition members are embarrassed; pointing out, San Francisco has a $14 billion annual tourism industry and Oakland has a $800 million annual tourism industry. So why would elected officials of San Francisco covet the Golden State Warriors, one of the jewels of Oakland, CA? Allen Jones, initiatives proponent says, “A world-class city helps its neighbors. It does not help itself to its neighbor’s jewels.”

The coalition also rebukes NBA commissioner, Adam Silver, who has endorsed this move. Silver has shown great moral leadership against the racist remarks of a now former NBA franchise owner. He has shown moral leadership against the entire State of North Carolina for its discriminating against members of the LGBT community.

However, Adam Silver is the commissioner of a multibillion dollar sports league. Since he has been commissioner, the value of the Golden State Warriors went from $450 million to over $2 billion dollars. The billionaire owners of the Warriors refused to pay their debt of $60 million in upgrades to their current facility. They claim, after leaving their Oracle Arena when their new arena is built they should not have to pay any more of the bills for the old arena, even though the team demanded the upgrades under old ownership that the new ownership enjoys. Silver has showed no moral compulsion to help the community of Oakland who still must pay this bill. Therefore, the Good Neighbor coalition felt the need and moral obligation to, address that issue in its ballot measure statement for other municipalities to consider when opening their doors to billionaire owners.

The Declaration of Policy voters will decide on, reads:

Thou Shall Not Covet Policy of San Francisco shall be: We the People of the City and County of San Francisco California will not invite, entice, encourage, cajole or condone the relocation of any professional sports team that has previously established itself in another municipality and has demonstrated clear and convincing support from community and fans for at least twenty years and is profitable. And we stand against any sports team ownership group that attempts to avoid payment of an outstanding public debt. Instead of looking for an opportunity to take from our neighbors we wish to fully support each other and the entire Bay Area.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to defeat the owners of the Warriors and San Francisco City Hall at their own game.

You may follow progress of the ballot measure on the San Francisco Department of Elections website: Campaign services


About the Good Neighbor Coalition
The Good Neighbor Coalition was created by Allen Jones, a San Francisco resident since 1960 and a Golden State Warriors fan since 1975. The goals of the coalition are to promote team ownership integrity nationwide, greater appreciation for loyal fans and a good neighbor policy to guide municipalities on how best to deal with the loss of, or how to acquire a professional sports team through moral channels.

 

Groups Announce Rally in Support of a Stronger Sanctuary City Policy in Chicago that Protects All Immigrants

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

Demonstration will highlight the stories of immigrants that are unprotected by the Welcoming City Ordinance, allowing police to turn them over to for deportation. The rally will take place on Thursday, June  15th, at 11:00 AM starting at Daley Plaza.

CHICAGO, IL – A coalition of immigrant rights, racial justice, legal advocacy, and labor rights organizations have called for a demonstration at City Hall one week before the Chicago City Council, where amendments to the Welcoming City Ordinance, Chicago’s “sanctuary city” policy, is expected to be called to a vote.

The groups are calling for a public demonstration after being in numerous conversation with the Office of New Americans, the Office of Public Safety, and the Office of Legislative Affairs, representing Mayor Emanuel,  for two years and finding that the departments are not willing to move forward an ordinance that protects all immigrants threatened by President Trump’s deportation policies.

“Because of a mistake I made when I was 22 years old, the City of Chicago does not want to protect me. In fact, they’ve have insisted that if I ever run into a Chicago police officer I should be turned over to immigration enforcement so that I can be deported,” recounted Antonio Gutierrez, a member of Organized Communities Against Deportations (OCAD) at a recent press conference.

Six years ago, Antonio was arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) and because as an undocumented immigrant he had no access to a Driver’s License, he was charged with a felony. If he had been detained by the Chicago Police Department for any reason, he would have been turned over to ICE. “For me, and people like me, we do not live in a Sanctuary City,” he concluded.

The coalition of groups has been meeting with Aldermen and representatives from the Mayor’s office to close the deportation loopholes in the ordinance so that the city would have no part in the Trump administrations unhinged federal removal plans. They have reached a general agreement with the City except on the issue of fixing four broad carve outs that allow the Chicago police department to assist the Trump administration in detaining and deporting some people.

“ICE detainers and warrants do not satisfy the basic requirements of the Fourth Amendment to the US Constitution that law enforcement officers go before a judge and establish probable cause,” said Fred Tsao, senior policy counsel at the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights.  “Allowing any arrests based on ICE detainers or warrants, without any other judicial finding of probable cause, opens up the city to liability,” he concluded.

The City’s decision to change the ordinance comes amidst increased immigration enforcement raids and fears of deportation in immigrant communities throughout the city. “In this political climate when we most need the Mayor to mean it when he says that we are a Sanctuary city. The carve outs that would remain in the Welcoming City Ordinance would in fact mean that this is not ‘One Chicago’ as the Mayor proclaims, but that in fact there are two Chicagos: One for those the City will protect, and one for those it will help deport,” concluded Tania Unzueta, Policy Director at Mijente, one of the organizations leading the campaign.

The groups are urging city council to pass the original amendments proposed in February with 28 Co-sponsors and to reject any effort by the mayor to water-down the protections with allowances for local law enforcement to participate in Trump’s mass deportation efforts.

Organizations involved in the campaign include Arab American Action Network Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Chicago, Organized Communities Against Deportations, the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, the National Immigrant Justice Center, Southwest Organizing Project, Centro de Trabajadores Unidos – Immigrant Worker Defense Project, the Latino Policy Forum, Mujeres Latinas en Acción, Enlace, Hana Center, Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America, Chicago Community and Workers’ Rights, the Latino Union of Chicago, Brighton Park Neighborhood Council, Communities United, Community Activism Law Alliance, and Black Youth Project 100.

 

Senator Sanders to Address People’s Summit

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders will deliver the keynote address Saturday in Chicago at the People’s Summit, a major gathering of progressive activists from across the country. Sanders will outline how we can advance as a society if we overcome the greed of the billionaire class and detail the path forward for the Democratic Party.

What: Sanders will deliver the keynote at the People’s Summit
When: Saturday, June 10 at 7 PM CT
Where: McCormick Place, Chicago, Illinois

A live stream will be available here.
More information, including how to register for the event, is available at the People’s Summit website.

 

Attorney General Madigan Urges Education Secretary Devos to Stop Delaying Student Loan Forgiveness

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced she is leading a coalition of attorneys general and other state officials demanding that the U.S. Department of Education stop delaying its program to cancel federal student loans for thousands of Illinois students victimized by predatory for-profit colleges.

 

Across the country, thousands of former students of Corinthian Colleges Inc., who are eligible for loan forgiveness by the U.S. Department of Education, have yet to see their loans forgiven and are continuing to make payments on these loans. Some students are nearing the end of 12-month forbearances or collections bans on their loans and face restarting monthly payments on debts that should be canceled. All of these students attended campuses and programs where the Department of Education found fraud.

 

In a letter sent today to U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos, Madigan urges the Department of Education to review the mounting applications and work to forgive loans already approved to be canceled.

 

“Education Secretary DeVos must immediately forgive student loans the Department of Education has already determined were solicited by fraudulent for-profit schools,” Madigan said. “Yet, inexplicably, the government is still collecting on these fraudulently induced loans from schools the Department never should have allowed to operate.”

 

The letter presses DeVos to provide information on what the department is doing to rectify the growing backlog of applications and to provide a timeframe for forgiving the student loan debt. In addition, since the Department of Education has already determined that these students are eligible for loan forgiveness, the letter urges DeVos to abandon the application process and automatically discharge all eligible loans.

 

“Relieving these hard-working Americans of their fraud-induced student debt will free them to participate more fully in their local economies, or even continue their educations with reputable schools,” the letter states.

 

After intense scrutiny by various government entities, for-profit Corinthian Colleges abruptly ceased operations in 2015. Corinthian owned and operated seven Everest College campuses in Illinois. Madigan’s investigation into Everest College revealed widespread misrepresentations made to prospective students, supporting the Department of Education’s own findings of fraud that Corinthian made systemic misrepresentations between 2010 and 2014 about post-graduation employment rates for certain programs at its campuses.

 

Former Corinthian students in Illinois were notified as part of a bipartisan effort by Madigan and 46 other attorneys general across the country to inform more than 100,000 former Corinthian students that they are eligible for streamlined loan cancelation and provide information on how to apply for loan forgiveness.

 

Attorney General Madigan is a national leader in investigating and enforcing consumer protection violations in the higher education field. She has investigated for-profit schools for fraud and repeatedly called on the U.S. Department of Education to immediately forgive federal loans of students who attended fraudulent for-profit schools.

 

In addition to her investigation of Corinthian, Madigan reached a $15 million settlement with Westwood College in 2015 that forgave private debt owed by students of Westwood’s criminal justice program. After resolving Madigan’s lawsuit, the college announced its closure. More than 3,600 former Westwood College students in Illinois received an average of more than $4,200 in relief under the settlement, in addition to the potential federal loan relief called for by Madigan.

 

Madigan also reached a settlement with Education Management Corporation (EDMC), which operates five Illinois Institute of Art and Argosy University campuses in Illinois. The settlement requires EDMC to provide disclosure to students about the true cost of the school and expectations for job placement after graduation.

 

Earlier this year, Madigan filed a lawsuit against Navient and Sallie Mae for faulty and abusive student loan practices. Madigan also testified before Congress and urged the U.S. Department of Education to crack down on the many abuses and scams facing student borrowers.

 

Madigan’s office runs a free Student Loan Helpline to provide student borrowers with free resources about repayment options, avoiding default or to file a complaint about loan servicing at (800) 455-2456 (TTY: 1-800-964-3013). More information can also be found on her website.

 

Joining Madigan in sending today’s letter are attorneys general from: California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington and the District of Columbia, as well as Hawaii’s Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.

 

Nicholas David Steps in for Devon Allman at 21st Blues on the Fox Festival, Saturday, June 17 at Aurora’s Riveredge Park

Posted by Admin On June - 8 - 2017 ADD COMMENTS
 
Nicholas David will play the 21st Annual Blues on the Fox Festival on Saturday, June 17 at 3 p.m.
AURORA, IL RiverEdge Park announced today a change to its line-up for next weekend’s 21st Annual Blues on the Fox Festival.

Devon Allman, slated to perform at 5 p.m., Saturday, June 17, is stepping away from all touring through the fall in the wake of the passing last week of his father Gregg Allman.

Stepping in for Allman at Blues on the Fox is the soulful, bluesy singer/songwriter Nicholas David, best known for his unforgettable 2012 run on NBC’s The Voice.

David, who plays to sold out shows around the country, will open the day two of the festival, Saturday, June 17 at 3 p.m.Chicago’s own Guy King Band’s classic jazz sound of yesteryear fused with a fresh spin moves to 5 p.m. Blues Hall of Famer, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and Grammy nominee Elvin Bishop takes the stage at 7 p.m. The legendary Jonny Lang closes the festival Saturday night at 9 p.m.shredding his brand of blues, gospel, pop, R&B, rock and soul.

The all-ladies schedule on Friday night, June 16, kicks off as planned with three-time Grammy nominee and international blues favorite Shemekia Copeland at
7 p.m., followed by Chicago’s own living legend, the incomparable Mavis Staples at 9 p.m.

RiverEdge Park, located at 360 N. Broadway in downtown Aurora, is the idyllic venue for Blues on the Fox, serving up two days of sizzlin’ blues music, cold beer, tasty festival food and a damn good time, all overlooking the gorgeous Fox River. Gates open Friday, June 16, at 6 p.m., and Saturday, June 17 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $20 per day. Children 12 and under are admitted free but must be accompanied by an adult 18 years or older.
                                                                                           
For tickets and information, visit RiverEdgeAurora.com, call the RiverEdge box office, 630.896.6666, or stop by in-person at RiverEdge’s satellite box office, the Paramount Theatre, 23 E. Galena Blvd., Aurora, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday-Saturday. The RiverEdge box office will also be open on-site both days for day-of sales, beginning at noon. All tickets are general admission. Ticket fees not included.The 21st Annual Blues on the Fox Festival premier sponsor is Old Second Bank. The festival is also sponsored by Rush-Copley Medical Center, Fox Valley Park District, R.C. Wegman Construction Company, EarthMover Credit Union, Chiro One Wellness Centers, Holiday Inn Aurora-North-Naperville, Paramount Fence and Kane County Chronicle. The official radio station is 93.1 WXRT-FM. Season sponsors for RiverEdge Park are the Dunham Fund, the City of Aurora and Superior Beverage. 
 

More about Nicholas David

The official video for
The official video for “Look at Me” by Nicholas David

Nicholas David is a vibrant, dynamic and multi-talented singer/songwriter from Saint Paul, MN. For more than a decade, David has composed alternative soul music that connects with people worldwide on a deeply human level. Prior to his memorable 2012 run with Team CeeLo on NBC’s The Voice, Davis had already recorded five critically acclaimed albums, experienced national radio airplay and participated in multiple charity and collaborative projects. Fans of The Voice were introduced to his soulful and storied career during this time when he struck a chord with America and finished a fan favorite in the top three.

 

David’s music is a fully integrative experience, incorporating multiple genres and influences ranging everywhere from Prince to Beethoven. His powerful voice, enriching lyrics and liquid piano playing set him apart and are the reasons Skope Magazine called him “an authentic artist of this millennium,” while the Chicago Tribune hailed his “mix of the growl of Dr. John with the silk of Marvin Gaye.” When it comes to his iconic live shows, David is a one-of-a-kind and must-see act. Fans have gone as far to speak of his performances as a spiritual service that they actually want to attend. His emotional approach to songwriting and performing is the very reason the thriving Twin Cities music scene affectionately nicknamed him ‘the feelin.’

Tips for seeing a concert at RiverEdge Park

 

RiverEdge is easy to get to from Chicago via Metra’s Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) line. Paid public parking is available in the Metra lot, with additional private lots surrounding the park and in downtown Aurora.
Guests are encouraged to bring folding and bag chairs. Concessions at RiverEdge boast a diverse food menu and bar featuring domestic and craft beers, wine, sodas, bottled water and more. Outside food is welcome in the Park as well, with restrictions. Only soft collapsible coolers no larger than 12″ W x 12″ T x 12″ L are allowed. Coolers, as well as any other personal items, must fit in front of or under chairs and must not take up room on either side. No outside beverages are allowed in, with the exception of two sealed bottles of unflavored water per person. All coolers are subject to inspection. One cooler per patron.Events at RiverEdge Park take place rain or shine, unless conditions endanger the safety of artists and the public. Concertgoers are advised to follow RiverEdge Park on Facebook and Twitter for all concert updates, or call the RiverEdge Park Weather Line, 630.723.2480, to check status if inclement weather is pending.
For tickets and information, visit RiverEdgeAurora.com or call 630.896.6666

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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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