06-24-2018  12:29 am      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

On the hunt in Oregon for a rare Sierra Nevada red fox

BEND, Ore. (AP) — In a dense forest at the base of Mount Bachelor, two wildlife biologists slowly walked toward a small cage trap they hoped would contain a rare red fox species. Jamie Bowles, an Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife technician in Bend, and Tim Hiller, founder of the...

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Abuse survivor finds new life, success in Pacific Northwest

VANCOUVER, Wash. (AP) — Jonathan Dutson long dreamed of moving to the Pacific Northwest, where its lush greenery offered a respite from the scorching Arizona sun he grew up beneath. But Dutson was looking as much for a new home as he was looking for an escape.Dutson was one of 700 who walked...

Alaska city honors Guardsmen killed in crash after '64 quake

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A month after the second most powerful earthquake ever was recorded, the Alaska port community of Valdez remained in ruins.A hulking Alaska National Guard cargo plane's mission April 25, 1964, was to deliver Gov. William Egan to oversee efforts to rebuild the town on...

OPINION

How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Racist tropes in Ramadan TV satires anger black Arabs

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In an attempt to capitalize on what's become a ratings bonanza for Arabic satellite channels during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, two comedies struck the wrong chord with audiences when their lead actors appeared in blackface.Criticism was swift on...

Chaos on the border inflames GOP's split with Latinos

When more than 1,000 Latino officials __ a crop of up-and-coming representatives from a fast-growing demographic __ gathered in Phoenix last week, no one from the Trump administration was there to greet them.It marked the first time a presidential administration skipped the annual conference of the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Han Solo's Blaster from 'Return of the Jedi' tops auction

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Han Solo's Blaster from the "Return of the Jedi" has sold for 0,000 at a Las Vegas auction.Julien's Auctions says Ripley's Believe It or Not bought the item Saturday.The sci-fi weapon was the top-selling item at the Hollywood Legends auction.The blaster was part of a...

Ornate NYC theater, used for years as a gym, to be restored

NEW YORK (AP) — For years, Long Island University's basketball team played in a French Baroque movie palace in downtown Brooklyn.The gilded wall fountains, plastered statuettes and towering, one-of-a-kind Wurlitzer organ pipes of the historic Paramount Theater were preserved by the...

Vinnie Paul, co-founder, drummer of Pantera, dies at 54

Vinnie Paul, co-founder and drummer of metal band Pantera, has died at 54.Pantera's official Facebook page posted a statement early Saturday announcing his death. The label of Hellyeah, his most recent group, confirmed the death but neither statement mentioned Paul's cause of death.His real name...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

In about-face, Iraq's maverick al-Sadr moves closer to Iran

BAGHDAD (AP) — Muqtada al-Sadr, the maverick Shiite cleric who emerged as the main winner in Iraq's...

US moves 100 coffins to N. Korean border for war remains

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The U.S. military said it moved 100 wooden coffins to the inter-Korean border to...

New Zealand leader names daughter Neve, leaves hospital

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and her partner Clarke Gayford...

AP PHOTOS: Germany salvages campaign on Day 10 of World Cup

MOSCOW (AP) — Germany midfielder Toni Kroos scored a dramatic late winner to come from behind and beat...

Beyond World Cup: Advocates call attention to Russian abuses

MOSCOW (AP) — Wrapped in national flags, jubilant fans dance at midnight in the streets of Moscow, smiling,...

In about-face, Iraq's maverick al-Sadr moves closer to Iran

BAGHDAD (AP) — Muqtada al-Sadr, the maverick Shiite cleric who emerged as the main winner in Iraq's...

Lisa Loving of The Skanner News

Adrienne Livingston of the Black United Fund spent months organizing last Saturday's second annual BUF College Fair at Portland State University.

She and her staff put together loads of materials and special assistance just to make sure as many youths as possible understand all their post-high school options.

But even Livingston – who has immersed herself in university admissions – was shocked at the Obama Administration's reversal last week of his predecessor's elimination of race as a qualification for college admissions.

The U.S. Departments of Justice and Education released a joint statement Friday sketching out the new guidelines – which clearly walk a tightrope between past Supreme Court decisions and the need to encourage more racial diversity in higher education.

"Ensuring that our nation's students are provided with learning environments comprised of students of diverse backgrounds is not just a lofty ideal," wrote Attorney General Eric Holder. "As the Supreme Court has recognized, the benefits of participating in diverse learning environments flow to an individual, his or her classmates, and the community as a whole.

"These benefits greatly contribute to the educational, economic, and civic life of this nation," he said Friday.

Black Men Left Out

The crisis of college enrollment for African American students is stark: Historically Black Colleges and Universities, which have for more than 100 years graduated more Black students than any other institutions, are seeing enrollment drop-offs that threaten to shutter some campuses.

Throughout the system of higher education, U.S. Department of Education statistics show that men of color are particularly absent from the university classroom: overall graduation rates for African and African American males are about 33 percent; for Black women the rate is just under 45 percent. The entire university system graduates just 57.3 percent of students.

The statistics are cited in article on America's Wire by Marjorie Valbrun, "Black Males Missing from College Campuses," published earlier this year, which explores the issue in depth.

Friday a coalition of Civil Rights groups leaped to back up the new admissions guidelines, which they say "provide a roadmap for K-12 schools, colleges, and universities to implement the voluntary diversity and integration standards set by the Supreme Court's decisions in Grutter v. Bollinger (2003) and Parents Involved v. Seattle Schools (2007)."

"Racial segregation and concentrated poverty are increasing in our nation's schools, suggesting that we are backtracking on the successes of the civil rights movement," the civil rights groups said. "Many schools are more racially isolated today than they were in the 1970s. Today's guidance recognizes the harms of re-segregation and the benefits of diversity."

That statement was signed by the ACLU,  the NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund, and three other community-of-color legal associations.

Conservative observers decried the smackdown of the Bush Administration's anti-race policy. The Wall Street Journal cited a case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court concerning the University of Texas at Austin, where a plaintiff seeks to shut down "a race-conscious admissions policy."

The Journal quotes an anti-race activist predicting the new guidelines will be overturned.

Students Reach for College Help

Meanwhile, more than 100 high school and college students crowded around tables at PSU's Smith Center, soaking up pitches from HBCUs, Ivy League schools, the Peace Corps, and more.

"We decided to put together this event because there are so many of our students who needed help and guidance," Livingston said.

Coming quickly behind the BUF is the Oregon Community Foundation, which announced Monday it is dishing out $40,000 to the BUF to bolster its higher education programs; in addition, it awarded $25,000 to Elevate Oregon to improve high school graduation rates; and $25,000 to Campfire Columbia for their Cradle-to-Career program.

"On top of that we have a huge scholarship program too, where we give scholarships to more than 2,000 students all over Oregon," said Joan Vallejo of the OCF. "Another huge barrier to higher education is funding – that much we know."

Livingston says the BUF is committed to continuing its annual college fairs as well as ongoing help and mentoring for young people who want to go.

"When you have a college education your earnings potential increases, you have greater access to health insurance, more access just to opportunities – doors open," she says. "When you look at the economy at this time, we know that many people are unemployed – it's going to be worse for a person who doesn't have a college education. So we want to encourage our students to get a college education – it opens the world to them."

Livingston said more volunteers from the community are needed to give one-on-one support to the young people who come in for guidance. She said the BUF's programs are also always open to area sponsors who wish to pitch in with resources, as Portland State University and The Skanner News did with the college fair last week.

In addition, Kaiser Permanente and Wieden+Kennedy contributed cash for four $500 scholarships for high school and college students at the fair.

"If we can come alongside a student and really help them? That just pleases my heart so much," Livingstone says. "Today we have students from as far away as Philomath, Oregon – so we're doing it because we want to be that resource."

For more information go to the Black United Fund website at www.bufor.org

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