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NORTHWEST NEWS

Portland Police Declare Unlawful Assembly During Protest

Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley and Portland City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty addressed event organised by NAACP focused on Black Lives Matter

Shootings Increase During Portland Protests

Between June 1 and end July 31, 2020 there were 125 reported shootings compared to a total of 59 shootings in 2019

Portland Protest Scene Relatively Calm After US Drawdown

Under the deal announced by Governor Kate Brown, the federal agents will withdraw in phases.

Portland Approves $114 M Relief Budget with Focus on Communities of Color

Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty voted no, arguing for better houseless resources.

NEWS BRIEFS

Barbara Bush Foundation Partners with Barbershop Books and Penguin to Provide Child-Friendly Reading Spaces in Baltimore and Detroit Barbershops

Developed in Harlem, Barbershop Books is a community-based program that leverages the cultural significance of barbershops in...

All Classical Portland Awards Grant to Support Emmanuel Henreid's 'Livin' in the Light'

Livin’ in the Light documents Onry’s experience as a Black, male, professional opera and crossover singer in Portland, Ore. ...

House Approves Legislation to Stop Trump Attack on Fair Housing

Ocasio-Cortez, Blumenauer amendment would block rollback of anti-discrimination rule ...

Louis Mair Named as New Principal at Harriet Tubman Middle School

Louis comes to Harriet Tubman from Georgia, where he was a leader in building an inclusive and supportive learning community. ...

Portland City Council OKs Independent Police Oversight Board

The measure advanced by City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty would set up a commission of undetermined size ...

Gyms will need to triple distance for exercising indoors

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Washington Gov. Jay Inslee released updated guidance Monday for gyms and fitness facilities that nearly triples the minimum distance required for patrons exercising indoors, except for those practicing certain team sports.Starting Aug. 10, instead of the current...

Seattle police chief upset after protesters visit her home

SEATTLE (AP) — Seattle’s police chief urged the City Council to tell protesters to stop visiting the homes of elected officials and others during emotional debates over reducing funding for police.Chief Carmen Best wrote a letter to the council after protesters showed up at her home...

Missouri's Drinkwitz takes side in mask-or-no-mask debate

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Eli Drinkwitz has been the head coach at Missouri for just over seven months. He has yet to lead the Tigers onto the football field, much less win a game, yet his role in the community already has forced him to take some important stands.First, it was supporting his new...

Iowa defensive back Jack Koerner hurt in jet ski accident

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Iowa defensive back Jack Koerner sustained serious injuries when he and a passenger on a jet ski collided with a boat on the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri.According to a police report, Koerner and Cole Coffin were hurt at about 6:30 p.m. Friday when their watercraft...

OPINION

Bill Deiz urges Oregonians to Defend their Constitutional Rights

Elements of federal police, sent in by our president, are nightly tormenting our citizens with tear gas, impact munitions, kidnappings and beatings, and other criminal acts, in order to suppress our rights of free speech and free assembly ...

The Power of Love

Powerful lessons for me today on forgiveness. ...

Loretta Smith—Vote Yes

The Skanner News endorses Loretta Smith for City Commissioner, Position 2 ...

Essay on War Against Portlanders Who Support Black Lives Matter

The author questions how people can see only the cops' side when their criminality and lawlessness against peaceful protest is fueling the rage on the streets. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Who's who on the committee vetting Biden's possible VPs

ATLANTA (AP) — Vice presidential searches make for perhaps the most popular of Washington parlor games: Veepstakes.The 2020 version now rests with Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden. If he defeats President Donald Trump, his pick would become the first woman to hold U.S. national...

Pac-12 responds to football players threatening opt-outs

The Pac-12 responded Monday to football players who have threaten to opt-out of the season because of concerns related to health and safety, racial injustice and economic rights with a letter touting the conference’s work in those areas and an invitation to meet later this week. A letter...

TCU chancellor: Patterson apologizes for use of racial slur

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — TCU’s chancellor said football coach Gary Patterson apologized Monday for repeating a racial slur when telling a player to stop using the slur in team meetings.Linebacker Dylan Jordan accused Patterson on Twitter of using the slur during a confrontation at...

ENTERTAINMENT

Steve McQueen sets 3 premieres at New York Film Festival

Three original films by Oscar-winner Steve McQueen will debut at the New York Film Festival this year, organizers said Monday. The “12 Years a Slave” director will get the opening night slot for the 1980s-set music romance “Lovers Rock” in addition to two other premieres...

Lucky No.7: Taylor Swift nabs 7th No.1 album with 'folklore'

NEW YORK (AP) — To no one's surprise, Taylor Swift's surprise album “folklore" is dominating the music charts.Swift's eighth album debuted at No. 1 on Billboard's 200 albums chart this week, marking the best first-week sales of the year and giving the pop star her seventh No. 1 title...

Reporter sues Golden Globes organization over member rules

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Norwegian entertainment reporter on Monday sued the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, the organization that gives out the Golden Globe Awards, alleging that it acts as a cartel that stifles competition for its members. Reporter Kjersti Flaa filed the lawsuit in...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

3 men rescued from Pacific island after writing SOS in sand

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Three men have been rescued from a tiny Pacific island after writing a giant...

Irksome in Iceland, brusque in Britain? US envoys draw ire

REYKJAVIK, Iceland (AP) — In Iceland, a nation so safe that its president runs errands on a bicycle, U.S....

Urgency to bear witness grows for last Hiroshima victims

HIROSHIMA, Japan (AP) — For nearly 70 years, until he turned 85, Lee Jong-keun hid his past as an atomic...

Journalist and police guard killed in southern Mexico

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Press groups called for justice Monday after unidentified gunmen killed a journalist in...

3 men rescued from Pacific island after writing SOS in sand

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Three men have been rescued from a tiny Pacific island after writing a giant...

Hindus in India set to build temple at razed mosque site

LUCKNOW, India (AP) — As Hindus prepare to celebrate the groundbreaking of a long-awaited temple at a...

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Anna Challet New America Media

Both of Mailee Wang's parents were incarcerated for part of her youth, her father for two years and her mother for much of her life. Now 30, she recalls what it was like, particularly after her mother was released.

"Having a prison mentality is real … It doesn't shut off and that's what I lived though with my mom," says Wang. "The trauma that [the incarcerated] experience, it's chaos when they return home."

After her father was released from prison, he had the support of his family, which Wang says made a difference in his reentry. Because of his family, he knew he would have a place to live; he was also able to find employment. Her mother, though, suffered from mental health problems, was not employable, and did not have the help of her family.

"I know what worked with my dad. I know what's possible," she says. "Having family there is so important."

Children and youth who go through the experience of having an incarcerated parent are forced to become parents themselves at an early age, according to Wang; they have to figure out how to take care of not only themselves, but also their parents after they are released.

Today, Wang is the program and policy director of Project WHAT!, part of the advocacy organization Community Works based in Oakland, which provides training for service providers on how to effectively serve children and youth who have or have had an incarcerated parent. She spoke at a community forum on Friday held by New America Media that put a spotlight on the experiences of "children of reentry" – children and youth whose incarcerated parents have returned home.

The forum showcased a series of video portraits of parents coming home, as viewed through the eyes of their children. The filmmakers included Jean Melesaine, Daniel Zapien, and Andrew Bigelow of Silicon Valley De-Bug, David Meza and Anthony May of Richmond Pulse, and Valerie Klinker of New America Media.

Melesaine's video profiles Steeda McGruder, age 30, and her two daughters; McGruder gave birth to her daughter Malaysia while incarcerated. McGruder now runs a support group for formerly incarcerated women in Santa Clara County called Sisters That Been There.

"I had painted a vision of what it was going to be like. I got the house ready, I stocked it with food," says Steeda, who is African American, of preparing to be reunited with her children. "And then they came home, and they ate the food, and then the toys were played out … I only thought to that point. And now we're beyond that point and we're struggling."

More than one in ten children nationwide have a parent under criminal supervision (meaning that they are in jail or prison, or on probation or parole). One in fifteen African American children has a parent who is currently in prison, as opposed to less than one percent of white children.

Responding to the film about McGruder at the forum, Jessica Flintoft, a division director of the San Francisco Probation Department, said that the justice system "probably could have not sent [McGruder] to prison," especially when she was pregnant with her daughter.

"The criminal justice system is nothing but a series of decisions, and we can make different decisions at every turn," she says.

She points to programs that work with the Probation Department to help parents stay connected to their kids, like Cameo House in San Francisco, which provides transitional housing and support to single mothers who have recently been released from prison and have children under the age of 7.

Flintoft says that children of parents in the criminal justice system are three times more likely than their peers to become involved in the criminal justice system themselves, which points to a need for alternatives to incarceration, as well as more services and programs that address the needs of children of reentry.

Nell Bernstein, who coordinates the San Francisco Children of Incarcerated Parents Partnership and is the author of "All Alone in the World: Children of the Incarcerated," says that "post-prison punishments" are instrumental in high recidivism rates that keep parents separated from their children. Felony drug offenders, for example, are banned from receiving General Assistance or living in public housing; there's also a "huge array" of jobs from which reentering offenders are legally restricted, she says.

The California Department of Corrections reported in 2012 that the recidivism rate (the number returning to prison within three years of release) for the formerly incarcerated in California was 65 percent.

"Before we start helping, we just have to stop hurting," says Bernstein.

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