12-01-2021  9:49 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Attorney General Rosenblum Says She Won’t Run for Governor

Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum on Monday put to rest rumors and officially said she will not enter Oregon’s crowded race for governor.

Portland’s Black Population Grew in the Last Decade, but That’s Not the Whole Story

The Black population in North and Northeast Portland declined by 13.5% over the last 10 years as more than 3,000 Black residents moved away, new numbers from the 2020 census show.

City’s Budget Windfall Means More for Police, Despite NAACP Demands

Group calls out lack of engagement from City Hall.

Oregon Resists Dropping Controversial Investments

Oregon residents are increasingly pushing for the state to divest from fossil fuel companies and other controversial investments, but the state treasury is resisting and putting the onus on the Legislature.

NEWS BRIEFS

Open Enrollment Deadline Is Dec. 15 for Health Insurance Coverage Starting Jan. 1, 2022

Help applying and financial assistance is available through the Oregon Health Insurance Marketplace ...

Commissioners From Three Counties Select Lawrence-Spence to Fill Senate District 18 Vacancy

District 18 includes portions of west Portland and Tigard. ...

Congressional Black Caucus Issues a Statement on the Passing of Former Congresswoman Carrie P. Meek

Meek, the first Black person to represent Florida in Congress since the post-Civil War Reconstruction, died Sunday, Nov. 28 at her...

Vsp Global Partners With Black EyeCare Perspective to Eliminate Inequities and Increase Representation of People of Color in the Eye Care Industry

Partnership includes scholarships, leadership development, and outreach to prospective optometrists ...

Shop Local and Earn Free Parking With Parking Kitty

Find the purrfect gift for your loved ones by supporting small businesses and shopping local this holiday season, thanks to the...

Heat, no food, deadly weather: Climate change kills seabirds

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The warming of the planet is taking a deadly toll on seabirds that are suffering population declines from starvation, inability to reproduce, heat waves and extreme weather. Climate-related losses have hit albatrosses off the Hawaiian islands, northern...

Dozens of Oregon workers fired for not getting COVID shot

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Officials in Oregon say at least 99 state workers have been fired for failing to get vaccinated against COVID-19. KOIN reports the figures from the Department of Administrative Services show that out of more than 40,000 state workers, 84.7% received the...

No. 25 Arkansas beats Missouri, caps best season since 2011

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Sam Pittman grinned for almost the entirety of his postgame press conference Friday night. The Arkansas coach and his team had done something no others ever had. The No. 25 Razorbacks capped their regular season with a 34-17 victory over Missouri,...

Mizzou's Drinkwitz returning to Arkansas for rivalry game

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Just 45 miles of interstate highway separate Eli Drinkwitz from where he started and where he is now as Missouri's head football coach. Raised in the small Arkansas town of Alma, Drinkwitz will come full circle Friday when his Tigers visit No. 25...

OPINION

State is Painting Lipstick on Its One-of-a-kind, Long-term-care Law

Starting in January, the unpopular law imposes a stiff new tax of 58 cents per 0 earned for every worker in the state ...

Giving Thanks

Just by being alive we can be sure of having moments of sadness as well as happiness. When you’re active in politics, you experience both wins and losses. Sometimes it can be hard to feel grateful. ...

Acting on Climate will Require an Emphasis on Environmental Justice

Climate change affects us all, but its effects aren’t distributed equally. ...

Small Businesses Cannot Survive With Current Level of Postal Service

At The Skanner News office we received an important piece of correspondence that was postmarked June 12, 2021, and delivered to us on November 4, 2021. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Editorial Roundup: U.S.

Excerpts from recent editorials in the United States and abroad: Nov. 30 The Wall Street Journal on U.S. Supreme Court at abortion crossroads: The Supreme Court takes up its most important abortion case in years on Wednesday, and the...

Key moments since Jussie Smollett reported Chicago attack

CHICAGO (AP) — Jussie Smollett is on trial this week on charges that he lied to Chicago police when the former “Empire” actor and R&B singer reported being the victim of a racist and homophobic attack nearly three years ago. Some key moments in the story: Jan. 22,...

Biden HIV/AIDS strategy calls racism 'public health threat'

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration in its new HIV/AIDS strategy calls racism “a public health threat” that must be fully recognized as the world looks to end the epidemic. The strategy released Wednesday on the annual commemoration of World AIDS Day is meant to...

ENTERTAINMENT

Gucci heirs says ‘House of Gucci’ narrative is inaccurate

The Gucci family is not pleased with the depiction of their relatives in the new film “ House of Gucci.” In a statement issued this week, they said the narrative is “anything but accurate” and that the filmmakers did not consult them at all. The Guccis, who have no...

Weather vanes: Exhibit looks at artworks with a purpose

Perched atop churches, barns, businesses, homes and seats of government, weather vanes have over hundreds of years taken the form of everything from farm animals to pets, storybook figures to race cars. They were invented for one important job: telling which way the wind was...

Q&A: Mel Brooks, 95, is still riffing

NEW YORK (AP) — Leave it to Mel Brooks to blurb his own memoir. There, along with laudatory quotes from Billy Crystal, Norman Lear, Conan O'Brien and others is one from “M. Brooks," who hails “All About Me!” as: "Not since the Bible have I read anything so powerful and...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Jan. 6 panel to vote on contempt against former DOJ official

WASHINGTON (AP) — The House panel investigating the Jan. 6 U.S. Capitol insurrection will vote on pursuing...

Explosion of WWII bomb in Munich injures 4, disrupts trains

BERLIN (AP) — A World War II bomb exploded at a construction site next to a busy railway line in Munich on...

Putin demands NATO guarantees not to expand eastward

MOSCOW (AP) — President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that Moscow would seek Western guarantees precluding any...

Slovakia eyes bonus to boost vaccinations for 60 and overs

BRATISLAVA, SLovakia (AP) — Slovakia’s government has proposed a plan to give people 60 and older a 500-euro...

Official: Blinken, Russian FM to meet amid Ukraine tensions

WASHINGTON (AP) — Secretary of State Antony Blinken will meet separately with his Russian and Ukrainian...

German court OKs ban on Cyprus-based porn sites

BERLIN (AP) — A court has ruled that German authorities are justified in banning three pornographic websites...

Christine Armario the Associated Press

MIAMI (AP) -- Taking the microphone at a church in a predominantly black neighborhood of Miami, the Rev. Jesse Jackson asked how many in the crowd knew someone looking for a job.

Most of the several hundred people in the televised town hall gathering stood up. How many knew someone facing foreclosure? Student loan debt? In jail? Considered suicide? Crowds of people stood up in answer to each of his questions.

"This is a state of emergency," the civil rights leader and one-time Democratic presidential candidate declared.

The Congressional Black Caucus organized a town hall gathering in Miami to address black unemployment rates Monday evening, one of five taking place in August in distressed communities across the country. At issue is the stubbornly high unemployment rate in the black community, now at 16.8 percent nationwide, more than double that for whites and a figure that doesn't even include those who've stopped looking for work.

U.S Rep. Emanuel Cleaver, D-Mo. and the caucus chairman, said representatives are frustrated at being unable to advance bills in Congress aimed at encouraging job growth. Caucus members have introduced more than 40 such bills since January and none of them have passed. Republicans took control of the House nearly nine months ago.

Now, the lawmakers are taking to the road to ensure angry constituents that they are doing all in their power to help, while offering a job fair in each city as assistance. In Atlanta, Cleveland and Detroit, the events have drawn thousands, and more than 1,000 people streamed into a downtown convention center Tuesday morning for the Miami job fair. Another will be held in Los Angeles at the end of the month.

"We left the complaint counter and that's why we're on this tour," Cleaver said.

The mounting frustration over jobs is beginning to have political repercussions in the black community.

"Unemployment in South Florida, especially in the black community, is no longer a crisis," U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Fla., said before the event. "It's an epidemic."

The job fairs come amid a growing debate within the black community about the Obama administration's urban agenda. While black lawmakers have been reluctant to criticize the country's first black president, some are beginning to voice concern about the administration's focus on deficit reduction at a time of high joblessness and poverty in urban areas.

"I think our politicians need to step up and do a better job of helping people," said Lavern Eli, the executive director of Curley's House of Style in Miami's Model City neighborhood. "It's really like they're playing games with people's lives because people are hurting. The community is hurting. People are so desperate, just trying to survive."

Cleaver said he shares the community's frustration.

"I'm frustrated with the president, but I'm frustrated with me," Cleaver said in an interview Monday. "I'm frustrated with the tea party. Maybe I should have used my communications skills better to try to convince some of them to work with us. I'm frustrated with the Democratic leadership. The Republican leadership. The president. I think all of us bear some responsibility, some more than others, however."

At the town hall on Monday, congressional leaders, a White House representative, Jackson and a church leader fielded questions from an MSNBC moderator about what they've done to create jobs, reduce unemployment, push for another stimulus, and address the influence of tea party Republican legislators.

Don Graves, executive director of the president's Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, told representatives and constituents that President Barack Obama is focused on every community in the nation, but acknowledged some have bit hit harder than others.

U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., told him to be more specific: the black community.

"We've got to target where the greatest need is," she said.

Wilson said the job fair on Tuesday is expected to offer up to 3,000 jobs, from custodians to janitors, and draw upward of 5,000 people. She said unemployment in her district is about 17 percent, and as high as 40 percent for black males.

"I think the president is doing as much as he can, and I'm anxious to hear his proposal when we go back in September," Wilson said, referring to the president's job creation plan. "But if it includes any funding, we're going to have to fight. Because the tea party will stop him."

As the economy has struggled to recover, minorities have been disproportionately affected. An analysis of Census data released in July found that wealth gaps between whites and minorities have grown to their widest levels in a quarter-century, with whites on average having 20 times the net worth of blacks and 18 times that of Hispanics.

Algernon Austin, director of the race, ethnicity and economy program at the Economic Policy Institute, said a number of factors are pushing up the black unemployment rate, including a somewhat younger labor force, less-educated workers and discrimination. He pointed to several studies in which black and white workers presented the same qualifications to prospective employers. The black candidate consistently received less favorable responses.

"Even in good economic times, African American communities experience very high levels of unemployment," Austin said.

Tracey Turner, 40, of North Miami, came to Monday's event hoping to get some information on jobs. She has been out of work for nearly two years, after being laid off from her job as an accountant for Wal-Mart in September 2010.

Turner's unemployment benefits have expired and she is supporting four children. She has been working temp jobs but hasn't had any the last four months.

"It's killing me," she said.

Jaron Taylor, an 18-year-old Miami resident, said Tuesday he is desperately looking for work to help pay for college. Among the booths he visited was one set up by Starbucks.

"I have a good feeling," Taylor said. "The energy in this room is something. There's a good vibe. People are addressing the issue. They are making sure something will be done."

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Reporter Harry R. Weber in Miami contributed to this report.

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