08-11-2022  10:07 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Lottery Misses Mark on Minorities’ Fair Share

The Oregon Lottery’s most recent advertising slogan is “Together, we do good things”. But when we look at where the profits are coming from and where any potential benefit from lottery profits flow to, is this really true? 

Court Sides With Governor Kate Brown Over Early Prison Releases

Two attorneys took particular issue with Brown’s decision to allow 73 people convicted of murder, assault, rape and manslaughter while they were younger than 18 to apply for early release.

Ballot Measure to Overhaul City Government Promises Minority Representation While Facing Controversy

The Portland Charter Commission aims to bring city in line with how other major U.S. cities do local governance. 

White Woman Calls Police on Black Man Standing at His Home

“If you guys have a lease, I’d just like to see the lease,”

NEWS BRIEFS

Jefferson Alumni Invites Community to Block Party

This inaugural event is open to the public and will have tons of entertainment in tow, including a live DJ and music, a rib contest,...

Oregon Approved to Issue an Additional $46 Million in Pandemic EBT Food Assistance to 80,000 Young Children

The additional food benefits will be issued to families’ existing EBT cards in Fall 2022, with the exact dates yet to be...

Free Vaccination Events Provide Required Back-to-School Immunizations

On or before the first day of instruction, all K-12 students in Washington state must be up to date on vaccinations required for...

Merkley, Colleagues Continue Push for Robust Federal Response to Monkeypox Public Health Emergency

“As the country continues to navigate the [monkeypox public health emergency], the United States public health system remains on the...

Washington Ferries to Get $38 Million to Improve Services

Out of the 35 states and three territories receiving federal money for ferries, Washington will get the biggest allocation ...

Cops: Oregon crime ring moved M in catalytic converters

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Police in suburban Portland, Oregon, said Thursday they arrested a crime ring leader responsible for trafficking more than 44,000 catalytic converters stolen from vehicles on the West Coast since 2021. Detectives said they identified Brennan Doyle, 32, as the...

Seattle hospital to refuse some patients due to capacity

SEATTLE (AP) — Harborview Medical Center in Seattle will temporarily stop accepting less acute patients and will divert them to other health care systems as capacity challenges worsen, according to the hospital’s CEO. “All hospital systems (are) very much over capacity with very...

OPINION

No One Ever Told You About Black August?

Black America lives in a series of deserts. Many of us live in food deserts, financial deserts, employment deserts, and most of us live in information deserts. ...

Betsy Johnson Fails to Condemn Confederate Flags at Her Rally

The majority of Oregonians, including our rural communities, value inclusion and unity, not racism and bigotry. ...

Monkeypox, Covid, and Your Vote

We must start a voter registration drive right here where we live. This effort must become as important to us as putting food on the table and a roof over our heads. ...

Speaking of Reparations

To many Americans, “reparations” is a dirty word when applied to Black folks. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Cuomo: Taxpayers should pay sexual harassment legal bills

NEW YORK (AP) — Former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants taxpayers to foot his legal bills as he defends himself against a workplace sexual harassment claim — and he's suing the state's attorney general over it. Cuomo filed the suit against Attorney General Letitia James on...

Judge sends Wisconsin man to institution in hate crime crash

FOND DU LAC, Wis. (AP) — A Wisconsin judge committed a man accused of targeting a motorcyclist in a fatal crash because of the victim's race to life in a mental institution Thursday. Daniel Navarro, a 27-year-old Mexican American from Fond du Lac, was convicted Wednesday of...

ReAwaken Tour host says he feels harassed by NY prosecutor

BATAVIA, N.Y. (AP) — A Christian pastor in western New York said he felt intimidated and harassed after the state's attorney general, a Democrat, sent a letter saying she believed a planned far-right political event at his church this week could lead to racial violence. In the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Mary Gauthier uses songwriting to help people through trauma

NEW YORK (AP) — Having used songwriting to navigate her own trauma, Mary Gauthier is putting those skills to work helping others do the same. The Nashville-based musician has collaborated with war veterans to write about what they've been through, even producing a disc of the music,...

Novel inspired by Shirley Jackson classic expected in 2023

NEW YORK (AP) — The family of the late Shirley Jackson has authorized a novel inspired by her classic “The Haunting of Hill House.” Elizabeth Hand's "A Haunting on the Hill” is scheduled to come out in fall 2023. It’s the first time Jackson’s estate has approved an...

Metallica, Mariah Carey headline Global Citizen NYC concert

NEW YORK (AP) — Metallica, Mariah Carey and The Jonas Brothers will headline a free concert in New York’s Central Park next month marking the 10th anniversary of the Global Citizen Festival organized by the international nonprofit fighting extreme poverty. The Sept. 24 event will...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Cause sought for Indiana house explosion that killed 3

EVANSVILLE, Ind. (AP) — Authorities worked Thursday to determine the cause of a house explosion in a southern...

'Disturbing': Experts troubled by Canada’s euthanasia laws

TORONTO (AP) — Alan Nichols had a history of depression and other medical issues, but none were...

Groups get creative to help Alaska voters with ranked voting

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — Drag performers shimmied up and down a walkway between café tables, as enthusiastic...

UN demands end to military activity at Ukraine nuke plant

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. nuclear chief warned Thursday that “very alarming” military activity at...

Greece asks Turkey to help migrants reported stuck on islet

THESSALONIKI, Greece (AP) — Greece on Thursday asked neighboring Turkey to help about 40 migrants, some urgently...

Initial dives in collapsed Mexican mine unsuccessful

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Rescue divers' first attempts to reach 10 miners trapped inside a flooded coal mine since...

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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