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The Skanner News
Published: 25 October 2012

This just in from the Urban League of Portland:

With less than two weeks to go before the Nov. 6 elections, candidates running for Mayor of Portland will outline their plans to address issues facing Portland's black community, and communities of color at a town hall candidate's forum hosted by leading African American organizations, on Thursday, Oct. 25 at 6:30 p.m.

The forum will be moderated by Sharon Gary Smith, executive director of McKenzie River Gathering Foundation, and will be held at Maranatha Church, 4222 NE 12th Ave, Portland 97217 from 6:30-8:00 p.m.

"Our organizations have a vested interest in ensuring that our communities have a voice Urban League of Portland President Michael Alexander. "We have identified critical disparities facing our community, and will want to see clear strategies on what they intend to do about them that have effective and measurable outcomes."

Mayoral candidates Charlie Hales, and Jefferson Smith will face off to answer questions about high Black unemployment rates, gentrification and housing, economic opportunity, the city's Office of Equity and Human Rights and police accountability. The format will be Town Hall style, where members of the community will have the opportunity to ask the candidates questions directly.

The impact of budget cuts and economic opportunity will be key areas for the panel.  The focus of the forum is to help inform the community about candidates' priorities and strategies given current fiscal challenges.

The forum, Occupy the Vote: Educate, Employ and Empower, is sponsored by the Urban League of Portland, African American Alliance, and Portland African American Leadership Forum.


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