09-24-2020  11:46 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Wildfires Taint West Coast Vineyards With Taste of Smoke

No one knows the extent of the smoke damage to the crop, and growers are trying to assess the severity.

Black Lives Matters Protestors, Organizers Keep Up Momentum

Hazardous air quality stopped protests for a week, interrupted the more-than-100 nights of demonstrations.

Seattle City Council Overrides Mayor's Veto of Policing Cuts

Seattle will reduce the police department’s budget and reallocate some money to community programs

US Judge Blocks Postal Service Changes That Slowed Mail

The Yakima, Washington judge called the changes “a politically motivated attack on the efficiency of the Postal Service” before the November election.

NEWS BRIEFS

Wish Launches $2 Million Fund To Support Black-owned Businesses

The Wish Local Empowerment Program is set to impact more than 4,000 small businesses across the US ...

Black Leaders Endorse Sarah Iannarone for Portland Mayor

Iannarone seeks to unseat an embattled Mayor Ted Wheeler, who has increasingly high unfavorable approval ratings. ...

Today in History: Senate Confirms Nomination of First Female Justice to Supreme Court

On Sept. 21, 1981, the Senate unanimously confirmed the nomination of Sandra Day O’Connor to become the first female justice on the...

Free Masks and Gloves Now Available for Small Businesses

Businesses with fewer than 50 employees that are headquartered in Oregon with principal operations in Oregon are eligible. ...

Forest Service Explains 'Containment'

US Forest Service, Riverside Fire provides a special update to explain how they achieve wildfire containment. ...

Pandemic-proof: Fall college football revived on West Coast

A major college football season that was in peril six week ago as conferences succumbed to concerns about COVID-19 is reconstituting.The West Coast got back in the game Thursday night, The Pac-12 set Nov. 6 to start a seven-game season, joining the Big Ten in overturning August decisions to punt on...

Scorched California faces more hot, dry and windy weather

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Rain showers fell Thursday on the northwestern edges of fire-ravaged California, but forecasters warned residents to not be fooled: A new round of hot, dry and windy weather is expected by the weekend.“Ideally this would be a signal for a change in the upcoming...

No. 2 Alabama visits Missouri to begin SEC-only campaign

No. 2 Alabama at Missouri, Saturday at 7 p.m. ET (ESPN).Line: Alabama by 27 1/2.Series record: Alabama leads 4-2.WHAT’S AT STAKE?The second-ranked Crimson Tide will go for their fifth straight win over Missouri when the teams open their SEC-only schedule at Faurot Field. The Tigers will be...

No. 2 Crimson Tide visit Mizzou to begin SEC-only schedule

Alabama coach Nick Saban had nothing but praise for Eli Drinkwitz when discussing his Missouri counterpart this week.Hard to find much fault when Drinkwitz has only lost one game as a head coach.Of course, the up-and-coming boss of the Tigers also only has one season under his belt. But the 12-win...

OPINION

National Bar Association Statement on Breonna Taylor Decision

Not only was justice not served, the desultory and insufficient result we received today was also unacceptably slow in manifesting. ...

All Officers Responsible for Breonna Taylor’s Murder Must Be Held Accountable

Vanita Gupta, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, issued a statement in response to the grand jury’s findings regarding the police who murdered Breonna Taylor ...

ACLU Statement on Breonna Taylor Grand Jury Verdict

Carl Takei, senior staff attorney with the ACLU’s Criminal Law Reform Project, issued a statement about today's charges ...

True Justice Denied to Police Murder Victim Breonna Taylor, Greenlining Institute Says

The organization's president and CEO releases a response to today’s announcement of only minor charges -- "wanton endangerment" -- for one of the Louisville police officers who shot and killed Breonna Taylor. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

The Latest: Louisville police arrest at least 24 in protest

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — The Latest on a grand jury's decision not to indict police officers on criminal charges directly related to Breonna Taylor's death: (all times EDT)1:45 a.m.LOUISVILLE, Ky. — At least 24 people have been arrested in Louisville during the second night of protests...

In despair, protesters take to streets for Breonna Taylor

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Some of them raised their fists and called out “Black lives matter!” Others tended to the letters, flowers and signs grouped together in a square in downtown Louisville. All of them said her name: Breonna Taylor.People dismayed that the officers who shot...

In despair, protesters take to streets for Breonna Taylor

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — Some of them raised their fists and called out “Black lives matter!” Others tended to the letters, flowers and signs grouped together in a square in downtown Louisville. All of them said her name: Breonna Taylor.People dismayed that the officers who shot...

ENTERTAINMENT

Annual Lennon tribute, in 40th year, goes online

NEW YORK (AP) — Like many other events, an annual John Lennon tribute concert that takes place in his adopted city of New York on his Oct. 9 birthday has been forced online because of the coronavirus pandemic.There was no way it was being canceled, not on what would have been Lennon's 80th...

Disney delays 'Black Widow,' Spielberg's 'West Side Story'

NEW YORK (AP) — The Walt Disney Co. has further postponed its next mega-movies from Marvel, including “Black Widow,” while also postponing Steven Spielberg's “West Side Story” a full year in the company's latest recalibration due to the pandemic.Ten of Disney's...

Portrait by Renaissance master expected to soar past M

NEW YORK (AP) — An enigmatic painting from Renaissance master Sandro Botticelli will go on auction next year and art watchers will be seeing if it fetches more than its eye-watering million estimate, despite the pandemic.Botticelli’s 15th-century portrait of a nobleman in...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

For Arab newlyweds, the party goes on until police bust in

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The party was going strong: traditional music blared, families cheered,...

Virus disrupting Rio's Carnival for first time in a century

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — A cloud of uncertainty that has hung over Rio de Janeiro throughout the coronavirus...

At UN, China, Russia and US clash over pandemic responses

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The United States butted heads with China and Russia at the United Nations on...

Powerful Vatican Cardinal Becciu resigns amid scandal

ROME (AP) — The powerful head of the Vatican's saint-making office, Cardinal Angelo Becciu, resigned...

As virus surges, critics say UK hasn't learned from mistakes

LONDON (AP) — Britain bungled its response to the coronavirus the first time around. Now many scientists...

Virus disrupting Rio's Carnival for first time in a century

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — A cloud of uncertainty that has hung over Rio de Janeiro throughout the coronavirus...

Don't Call the Police for domestic disturbances
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By The Skanner News

By Zaineb Mohammed, New America Media

SAN FRANCISCO – Carolyn Gage was evicted from her foreclosed home in January. Earlier this month, she moved back in.

"I've been in here for 50 years. I know no other place but here. I left and it was just time for me to come back home," said Gage, who is in her mid-50s.

Gage's monthly payments spiked after her adjustable rate mortgage kicked in, and she could no longer afford the payments on her three-bedroom house in the city's Bayview Hunters Point district. She says she tried to modify her loan with her lender, Florida-based IB Properties, but to no avail.

When Gage initially left about 10 months ago, she took some personal items with her, but left most of the furniture and continued paying for some utilities.

"It didn't feel right for me to move. I just left my things because I knew I was going to return to them eventually," she said.

She had to re-activate a few utilities when she returned, like the water, but found the process fairly easy.

Walking back into the house was an emotional moment for Gage, but a joyous one.

"I was like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz; there's no place like home," Gage said. "It's a family home; I plan to stay there."

Gage was one of about two dozen homeowners who gathered Tuesday for a community potluck on Quesada Avenue for residents facing foreclosure and are refusing to leave their homes.

Homeowners expressed outrage at the way predatory lenders have targeted their community.

Residents of the Bayview are starting to see how the African-American community was especially victimized in the foreclosure crisis.

Gage believes that single women and elders in the black community were targeted for predatory loans. At the peak of the housing boom she was solicited for an adjustable rate loan to do some home improvements, even though she told the loan agent that she was on disability and did not have a steady income.

According to a report released last week by the Center for Responsible Lending, African Americans and Latinos were consistently more likely than whites to receive high-risk loan products. About a quarter of all Latino and African-American borrowers have lost their homes to foreclosure or are seriously delinquent, compared to under 12 percent for white borrowers.

Bayview residents Reverend Archbishop Franz King and Reverend Mother Marina King, who are founders of the St. John Coltrane African Orthodox Church, are also facing foreclosure. Their eviction date is set for Dec. 22.

King expressed deep anger and sorrow at the situation facing the black community in the Bayview.

"First redevelopment moved us out of the Fillmore and now we're losing our properties too? It's like there's nowhere for us to go," he said.

Grace Martinez, an organizer with Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE) who helped to arrange the event, commented that banks have become increasingly hostile to their efforts. "They call the police on us; they laugh at us."

Vivian Richardson, a homeowner on Quesada Avenue whose house was also foreclosed on, also has no intention of leaving. Her current eviction date is set for Dec. 31, but she, like many of her neighbors, is asking her lender to reduce the principal on her loan in order to make the monthly payments more affordable.

Richardson has been attempting to modify her home loan for the past two years. Earlier this month, tired of the lack of communication from the lender, Aurora Loan Services based in Delaware, she worked with ACCE to coordinate an e-mail blast to Aurora's chairman.

On Nov. 3, over the span of one to two hours, approximately 1,400 emails were sent and more than 100 phone calls made, imploring Chairman Theodore P. Janulis to stop Richardson's eviction. A spokesperson from the bank called her an hour after the blast and asked her to send an updated set of financial information so that they could review her case.

Two weeks have passed and she has yet to hear anything further. The bank spokesperson commented that Richardson's case is still being reviewed internally and they hope to get back to her by the end of next week.

However, Richardson has lived in her house for 13 years and plans to stay regardless of the bank's decision.

"I will defend the home," she said.

On Dec. 6, there will be a national day of action, "Occupy Our Homes," where people across the country facing predicaments similar to Gage and Richardson may follow their lead.

Partly inspired by the Occupy movement, the day of action is supported by various community organizations like Take Back the Land and ACCE. The call to action is for people to move back into their foreclosed properties and to defend the properties of families facing eviction.

Martinez commented on the growing anger people are feeling. "The idea is, 'I want what's mine.'" She said many homeowners had trusted the banks and ultimately, "People were buying into a lie."

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