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Inmates, Staff Worry About Care as Marion Prison Becomes One of Largest COVID Outbreaks in US

NNPA NEWSWIRE — According to state data that is updated daily, for Marion Correctional, as of May 1, staff members who reported positive results are 175; COVID-19 related staff deaths are 1; staff who have recovered are 98; units in quarantine include the full institution; inmates in quarantine are 430; inmates in isolation are 2016; inmates currently positive for COVID-19 are 2016; probable COVID-19 related deaths are 0; confirmed COVID-19 related deaths are 8; inmates who have pending results are 190; and inmates who have recovered are 69.

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At Marion Correctional Institution, above, 95 percent of inmates have tested positive for coronavirus as of May l. The minimum-to medium-security prison has become the largest-known source of coronavirus infections in the United States, according to the New York Times. Photo provided by Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction

By Dan Yount, The Cincinnati Herald

The largest-known coronavirus hotspot in the country isn’t in New York or California: it’s the Marion Correctional Institution, an Ohio state prison about 50 miles north of Columbus.

According to state data that is updated daily, for Marion Correctional, as of May 1, staff members who reported positive results are 175; COVID-19 related staff deaths are 1; staff who have recovered are 98; units in quarantine include the full institution; inmates in quarantine are 430; inmates in isolation are 2016; inmates currently positive for COVID-19 are 2016; probable COVID-19 related deaths are 0; confirmed COVID-19 related deaths are 8; inmates who have pending results are 190; and inmates who have recovered are 69.

In the Ohio prison system, as of May 1, 6375 inmates have been tested; 937 tests are pending; 4072 tested positive; and 1906 tested negative.

Thus, more than 95 percent of the population at the minimum- and medium-security facility at Marion have tested positive for COVID-19. Combined, almost 16 percent of Ohio’s total coronavirus cases come from the Marion prison.

Gov. Mike DeWine ordered that every inmate at Marion and two other prisons be tested. Many of those who tested positive showed no symptoms.

Yet, the situation at Marion is worse than any correctional institution in the country.

Interviews conducted by cleveland.com with inmates and activists reveal a number of reasons they say are to blame, including lags in getting test results, inadequate cleaning, no social-distancing measures, and intense strains on their mental health.

Prisons, by their very nature, are some of the most vulnerable places to infectious outbreaks, as they contain a large group of people forced to remain in close quarters, with limited access to medical care. At Marion, some inmates are assigned to cells, while others are assigned to a dorm – a large room filled with bunk beds for dozens of people.

“There is no social distancing,” said Jonathan White, a 44-year-old Marion inmate from Cincinnati serving 15 years to life for murder, told cleveland.com. “You can’t get away from it.”

Inmate Emrie Smith also spoke to cleveland.com, saying he has been in the gym, where there is no social distancing, and after 8 p.m. there is only one toilet available for about 200 men.

White said prison officials didn’t start moving to isolate sick inmates until the disease spread throughout the population.

However, JoEllen Smith, a spokesperson for the Ohio Department of Corrections in Columbus, told the Herald preparations to keep the virus out of the prison began in early January. Also, ODOC officials have been conferencing with correctional officials in other states for best practices information during the entire outbreak. Smith provided a comprehensive list of conditions enforced at Marian and other state prisons to reduce the cases of the disease.

“There is so much anxiety about what is going on here with people’s health,” White added. “We view ourselves as an expendable population. So, when you see these types of numbers that are happening to us in prison, it’s almost expected – like, they (the authorities) don’t care.”

When asked why Marion in particular has so many COVID-19 cases — more than the rest of Ohio’s prison system combined — state prisons spokeswoman JoEllen Smith gave this answer:

“The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction has taken an aggressive and unique approach to testing, which includes mass testing of all staff and inmates at the Marion Correctional Institution, the Pickaway Correctional Institution, and the Franklin Medical Center (which is Ohio’s medical facility for inmates),” Smith stated in an email. “Because we are testing everyone – including those who are not showing symptoms – we are getting positive test results on individuals who otherwise would have never been tested because they were asymptomatic.”

Smith stated that after testing, inmates who show symptoms are immediately placed into isolation.

As for cleaning supplies, Smith stated that chemical boxes are delivered daily to each prison area, and the amount of disinfectant has been increased during the coronavirus crisis.

As for mental-health services, Smith stated that the state’s prisons agency offers “a full continuum of mental-health care within our facilities” using social distancing guidelines and proper personal protective equipment.

State prison officials are also developing plans to increase the use of tele-services for mental-health care if necessary, she stated.

Dozens of protestors stood outside Marion Correctional Facility Saturday holding signs to show support for their loved ones inside.

“I’m here fighting for my son’s life,” said Sabrina White, whose son, Richard Williams, has been incarcerated at Marion for over a year now. He has four more years left on his sentence.

In a Marion Star report, “Just recently, we have inmates in here that can’t even walk and breathe because of the virus,” said Austin Cooper, who has served over half of his six-year sentence for aggravated burglary and assault. “Medical just keeps sending them back out here to the camp, talking about they can’t do nothing for them.”

Inmate Jimmy Dzelajlija, who is serving a 17-year sentence for robbery and aggravated robbery in Cuyahoga County, talked to 5 On Your Side investigators by phone about the situation inside Marion Correctional.

He said despite being tested Friday, he has not received the results of his COVID-19 test.

“That’s the aggravating part, they won’t tell us,” said Dzelajlija. “We don’t know with the numbers that high, we don’t know if we’re the ones who have it.”

Numbers from Ohio’s Department of Rehabilitation and Correction show more than three out of every four inmates in the prison are infected.

“They passed out masks, we have little these little face masks that we wear,” said Dzelajlija. “Really, that’s to be honest, that’s it. We’re supposed to practice social distancing, but it’s impossible. My neighbor is literally three feet away from me, both sides, and behind me. There’s no way to practice social distancing here.”

“The frustration is building and building and building among everybody in here,” he said. “And tempers are flaring up on just the slightest provocation.”

“I saw the numbers and I just broke down bawling,” said Azzurra Crispino in a report in the Marion Star newspaper.

Dr. Amy Acton, the director of Ohio’s Department of Health, echoed that.

“As we know, there is a significant amount of the population who are really being carriers or vectors without even realizing it,” Acton said.

And that’s what scares Crispino. She said even if you don’t care about the health of inmates, the threat of workers contracting the virus and carrying it outside prison walls and into the community is real.

“The virus doesn’t distinguish between why the person is in that facility,” said Crispino. “From the virus’ perspective, they are still eligible hosts.”

It’s why she believes it’s time for the state to seriously look at reducing its prison population to try and slow the spread of the virus.

“This is a human rights travesty and public health crisis,” said Crispino.

Department of Correction Director Chambers-Smith was part of the Governor’s press conference April 30.

“Individuals who test positive are placed in an area of the facility, which is separate from the general population. Also, our comprehensive testing approach of staff and inmates has assisted us in identifying asymptomatic individuals who have tested positive who can now be isolated from others in order to prevent further spread.

DRC’s preparation began for the potential impact of COVID early this year, Smith said. This included tabletop exercises and frequent discussion with counterparts across the county. Director Chambers-Smith presented during a national webinar the best practices in preparation for COVID for correctional facilities.

DRC continues to work closely with the Ohio Department of Health in implementing operational changes as we address the challenges associated with COVID-19, Smith said.

Smith said DRC has taken extensive steps in response to COVID, including but not limited to:

  • Prior to COVID-19, as part of our normal infectious disease control efforts, we routinely offer annual influenza vaccines to all offenders in our prison who wanted one, and especially targeted our at-risk and chronic care caseloads.
  • We have issued numerous communications to our staff and inmates, including education about COVID-19 and reminders to engage in aggressive hand washing and social distancing where possible.
  • The prisons have sanitation crews who frequently disinfect common surfaces with a chemical effective against COVID-19 in line with public health recommendations.
  • We are using technology and other methods to reduce staff and offender gatherings including using tele-conferencing for our new officer training.
  • We implemented a text messaging system for staff to be able to easily check in with their loved ones while they are at work as cell phones are not permitted within the facilities.
  • A family phone number and email address have been established and published to help answer questions about the impact COVID-19 is having on our operations. Individuals can email the DRC atcovid19@odrc.state.oh.us or call 614-728-1142.
  • We have implemented COVID-19 specific health screening for all inmates entering our prisons.
  • Volunteer activities and visiting have been suspended.
  • Only staff and mission critical contractors are permitted into the facilities. Health screenings are in place for staff and contractors who are entering the facilities/offices.
  • Staff and the incarcerated population are permitted to wear protective masks.
  • We have suspended travel for all state employees to only tasks that are mission critical.
  • The director issued an executive order to county jails regarding the screening of inmates before being transferred to our reception centers.
  • Reception inmates will be housed in the same area by date of arrival for a minimum of 5 weeks to monitor them for any symptoms.
  • Inmate work assignments, which are not on state property, have been suspended.
  • Most facilities are serving two meals per day – a hot brunch meal and a hot evening meal. This is being done to ensure we have less movement and less contact to reduce the potential spread of COVID-19. Commissary prices are being reduced as well to assist residents in being able to purchase food and other goods.
  • State Highway Patrol is providing perimeter security at three facilities.

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Mexico Celebrates Election of First Woman President

THE AFRO — This is indeed a proud and momentous moment for gender equality and female empowerment not only for the region but the entire world. Mexico is known for its strong patriarchal structures. Sheinbaum’s election to the presidency speaks volumes regarding the advancement women have made in Mexico since Universal Adult Suffrage. 
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By Wayne Campbell and Francine Mclean | The AFRO

“For the first time in 200 years of the republic, I will become the first female president of Mexico. I do not arrive alone. We all arrived, with our heroines who gave us our homeland, with our ancestors, our mothers, our daughters and our granddaughters.”
– Claudia Sheinbaum

Women have played a fundamental role in Mexico’s independence, reform and revolution.

Unfortunately, they did not have a right to political participation. Finally, women in Mexico got this fundamental right to vote on October 17, 1953. Their struggle began during the Mexican Revolution, with the starting point being the First Feminist Congress of the Yucatan in 1916. At that historic meeting, the women gathered there demanded equality, education and citizenship in order to build together with the men in a responsible manner.

Historically, Yucatan was the first state to recognize women’s right to vote in 1923. Claudia Sheinbaum has been elected as Mexico’s first woman president in an historic landslide win. Mexico’s official electoral authority said preliminary results showed the 61-year-old former head of government of Mexico City winning between 58 percent and 60 percent of the vote in the June 2 election. It was a landmark vote that saw not one, but two women vying to lead one of the hemisphere’s biggest nations.

Sheinbaum’s election will see a Jewish leader at the helm of one of the world’s largest predominantly Catholic countries. Mexico has a population of over 129 million people. In a country with one of the highest rates of murder against women in the world, Sheinbaum’s victory underscores the advances women have made in the political sphere.

Both of her parents were scientists. Sheinbaum studied physics before going on to receive a doctorate in energy engineering. Sheinbaum is accustomed to breaking the proverbial glass ceiling. In 2018 she became the first female head of government of Mexico City, a post she held until 2023, when she stepped down to run for president.

Nearly 100 million people were registered to vote in the election, but turnout appeared to be slightly lower than in past elections. Voters were also electing governors in nine of the country’s 32 states, and choosing candidates for both houses of Congress, thousands of head of government positions and other local posts, in the biggest elections the nation has seen.

Jewish ancestry

Sheinbaum, whose Jewish maternal grandparents immigrated to Mexico from Bulgaria fleeing the Nazis, had an illustrious career as a scientist before delving into politics. Her paternal grandparents hailed from Lithuania. An estimated 50,000 Jewish people live in Mexico. The majority are settled in Mexico City and its surroundings, with small communities in the cities of Monterrey, Guadalajara, Tijuana, Cancún, San Miguel de Allende and Los Cabos.

The first Jews arrived in Mexico in 1519 along with the Spanish colonization. The community began to grow substantially by the early 20th century, as thousands of Jews fled from the Ottoman Empire to escape instability and antisemitism.

International conflict

Sheinbaum’s win also comes at a significant time as the war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip has displaced more than one million Palestinians and left more than 35,000 people dead, according to officials in Gaza. Since the beginning of the war last year, Sheinbaum has condemned attacks on civilians. She even called for a cease-fire and said she supports a two-state solution.

Without a doubt Sheinbaum is Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s political protégé. She started her political career as his environmental minister after he was elected head of government of Mexico City in 2000. She has been unwaveringly loyal ever since, even supporting his pro-oil energy agenda despite her environmental background.

It is often said that while Sheinbaum lacks López Obrador’s charisma and popular appeal, she has a reputation for being analytical, disciplined and exacting. Most importantly, she has promised to support López Obrador’s policies and popular social programs, including a universal pension benefit for seniors as well as providing cash payments to low-income residents. Under Mexico’s constitution, presidents can only serve one six-year term.

This is indeed a proud and momentous moment for gender equality and female empowerment not only for the region but the entire world. Mexico is known for its strong patriarchal structures. Sheinbaum’s election to the presidency speaks volumes regarding the advancement women have made in Mexico since Universal Adult Suffrage.

The election of Sheinbaum will undoubtedly provide hope to thousands of Mexican girls in particular and girls in general that their biological sex is not an indicator of what they can achieve.

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PRESS ROOM: Denny’s Invests $3.3 Million in Holistic Approach to Feeding People: Body, Mind and Soul with Launch of Nationwide Community Alliance

NNPA NEWSWIRE — The official launch of Denny’s Community Alliance took place at a press conference at the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law. Denny’s CEO and President Kelli Valade signed the Community Alliance agreement and presented a $500,000 scholarship gift from Denny’s to the College of Law in support of its commitment to social justice, with further programs and activities unfolding nationwide with the Denny’s Community partner organizations.
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Kickoff Includes Signing of Alliance with 14 Partners including NAACP, HACR and the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law, and Scholarship Presentation

SPARTANBURG, S.C., June 2024 Denny’s (NASDAQ: DENN), America’s diner, announced today that it is elevating its decades-long commitment to communities nationwide by forming an alliance with 14 influential civic and educational organizations. The alliance is central to the brand’s Community initiative.

Denny’s groundwork for the Community initiative began over three decades ago when the company partnered with the NAACP, HACR, and 24 diverse civil rights organizations and nonprofit groups to drive positive change in the communities it serves. These efforts include over $2 billion in investments in diverse-owned businesses and donations exceeding $2.5 million in scholarships. Denny’s unwavering commitment to nurturing its workforce and addressing societal concerns takes a monumental leap forward with the launch of Community.

To amplify its dedication to feeding people: body, mind, and soul, Denny’s launched Community, a collaborative initiative dedicated to social change and forging strong alliances with trailblazing advocates, globally recognized civil rights leaders, and influential community and civic organizations representing historically marginalized communities. Denny’s will center its efforts around five key pillars: human and civil rights, business diversity, education, community involvement, and the cultivation of an inclusive leadership pipeline, in collaboration with its national and community partners.

The Denny’s Community initiative is a five-year partnership with organizations including: the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law, Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities, Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility (HACR), League of Latin American Citizens, NAACP, National Urban League, National Action Network, United States Hispanic Leadership Institute, and more.

Under the Community banner, Denny’s will allocate a total of $3.3 million for a multi-year commitment to its partners and support organizations to deploy local initiatives in cities and towns across the nation. These efforts include serving hot meals to underserved neighborhoods and groups via the Denny’s Mobile Relief Diner (MRD), which operates as a fully functional kitchen on wheels and travels across the nation, enhancing charitable giving programs, natural disasters, and emergency relief efforts.

Another key pillar in the Community initiative is promoting business diversity. Denny’s is partnering with the National Minority Supplier Development Council, US Pan Asian Chamber of Commerce, National LGBT Chamber of Commerce, Women’s Business Enterprise National Council, National Veteran Business Development Council, United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and Disability:IN.

As part of Denny’s launch of its nationwide Community Alliance, a scholarship gift of $500,000 was given to the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law. Crump accepted the donation from Denny’s in support of the College of Law’s commitment to social justice.Pictured (l-r): Dean Tarlika Nunez-Navarro, Benjamin L. Crump College of Law; Randy Brown, Denny’s Senior Manager, Business Diversity; Brenda J. Lauderback, Chair, Board of Directors, Denny’s Inc.; Michael Whitacre, Denny’s Director of Franchise Operations; Benjamin L. Crump; Gail Sharps Myers, Denny’s Executive Vice President, Chief Legal and Administrative Officer; Kelli Valade, Denny’s CEO and President; Fasika Melaku-Peterson, Denny’s Senior Vice President, Chief Learning and Development Officer; President David A. Armstrong, St. Thomas University; Nader Talebzadeh, Denny’s Director of International Operations; April Kelly-Drummond, Denny’s Vice President, Chief Inclusion and Community Engagement Officer

As part of Denny’s launch of its nationwide Community Alliance, a scholarship gift of $500,000 was given to the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law. Crump accepted the donation from Denny’s in support of the College of Law’s commitment to social justice.
Pictured (l-r): Dean Tarlika Nunez-Navarro, Benjamin L. Crump College of Law; Randy Brown, Denny’s Senior Manager, Business Diversity; Brenda J. Lauderback, Chair, Board of Directors, Denny’s Inc.; Michael Whitacre, Denny’s Director of Franchise Operations; Benjamin L. Crump; Gail Sharps Myers, Denny’s Executive Vice President, Chief Legal and Administrative Officer; Kelli Valade, Denny’s CEO and President; Fasika Melaku-Peterson, Denny’s Senior Vice President, Chief Learning and Development Officer; President David A. Armstrong, St. Thomas University; Nader Talebzadeh, Denny’s Director of International Operations; April Kelly-Drummond, Denny’s Vice President, Chief Inclusion and Community Engagement Officer

The official launch of Denny’s Community Alliance took place at a press conference at the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law. Denny’s CEO and President Kelli Valade signed the Community Alliance agreement and presented a $500,000 scholarship gift from Denny’s to the College of Law in support of its commitment to social justice, with further programs and activities unfolding nationwide with the Denny’s Community partner organizations.

Leaders of the coalition who attended the announcement include Benjamin L. Crump, St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law; Derrick Johnson, president of the NAACP; and Sylvia Pérez Cash, executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Hispanic Association of Corporate Responsibility (HACR).

“With the establishment of Denny’s Community initiative, we are continuing our work to connect with our guests and others in our communities,” said Valade. “Our partners are the embodiment of service and how to prioritize equity. We are honored to create this alliance that will impact and address challenges facing our society while breaking barriers to create a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive world for all.”

“We are grateful for corporations like Denny’s that recognize the vital importance of unity,” said Benjamin L. Crump. “We are honored to collaborate with leaders in this new alliance and are grateful to Denny’s for the scholarship support, which will help educate the social justice leaders of tomorrow, keeping the mission of equity and justice alive for decades to come.”

“The NAACP has been proud to partner with Denny’s for the last three decades, working collectively towards a more diverse corporate America,” said Derrick Johnson, President & CEO, NAACP. “The Community initiative is a crucial investment in those who have invested in the growth and success of the Denny’s brand. We are excited to continue this journey together, executing the vision of a more equitable and just society for all.”

“HACR is honored to enter a new phase of our decades-long partnership with Denny’s as part of Denny’s Community Alliance,” said HACR President and CEO, Cid Wilson. “Their multi-year investment is invaluable as we intensify our efforts to advance Hispanic inclusion. We recognize that real change requires sustained effort and are grateful to collaborate with a company, and peer advocacy organizations, that share our long-term commitment and unwavering focus. Our thanks to the leadership at Denny’s, for their steadfast commitment to Hispanic inclusion and overall DEI, including Kelli Valade, Board Chair Brenda Lauderback, board member and former CEO John Miller, and April Kelly-Drummond.”

Denny’s recently announced the launch of it’s Community Alliance with a gift to the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law. Representatives from Denny’s, NAACP, HACR, and the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law were on hand for event. Seated (l-r): Gail Sharps Myers, Denny’s Executive Vice President, Chief Legal and Administrative Officer; Brenda J. Lauderback, Chair, Board of Directors, Denny’s Inc.; Kelli Valade, Denny’s CEO and President; Benjamin L. Crump; Derrick Johnson, President and CEO, NAACP; Sylvia Pérez Cash, Executive Vice President, Chief Operations Officer, HACR.
Second Row (l-r): Nader Talebzadeh, Denny’s Director of International Operations; Fasika Melaku-Peterson, Denny’s Senior Vice President, Chief Learning and Development Officer; Michael Whitacre, Denny’s Director of Franchise Operations; April Kelly-Drummond, Denny’s Vice President, Chief Inclusion and Community Engagement Officer; Dean Tarika Nunez-Navarro, St. Thomas University, Benjamin L. Crump College of Law; President David A. Armstrong, St. Thomas University; Randy Brown, Denny’s Senior Manager, Business Diversity.

Denny’s recently announced the launch of it’s Community Alliance with a gift to the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law. Representatives from Denny’s, NAACP, HACR, and the St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law were on hand for event.
Seated (l-r): Gail Sharps Myers, Denny’s Executive Vice President, Chief Legal and Administrative Officer; Brenda J. Lauderback, Chair, Board of Directors, Denny’s Inc.; Kelli Valade, Denny’s CEO and President; Benjamin L. Crump; Derrick Johnson, President and CEO, NAACP; Sylvia Pérez Cash, Executive Vice President, Chief Operations Officer, HACR.
Second Row (l-r): Nader Talebzadeh, Denny’s Director of International Operations; Fasika Melaku-Peterson, Denny’s Senior Vice President, Chief Learning and Development Officer; Michael Whitacre, Denny’s Director of Franchise Operations; April Kelly-Drummond, Denny’s Vice President, Chief Inclusion and Community Engagement Officer; Dean Tarika Nunez-Navarro, St. Thomas University, Benjamin L. Crump College of Law; President David A. Armstrong, St. Thomas University; Randy Brown, Denny’s Senior Manager, Business Diversity.

Denny’s April Kelly-Drummond, vice president and Chief Inclusion and Community Engagement Officer: “Bottom line: we are committed to serving communities everywhere – and all are welcome. We are proud to embark on this ambitious Community journey with our esteemed colleagues and partners to address social injustice in the restaurant industry and beyond, as well as create equitable access and opportunities for all particularly in the areas of education and economic empowerment.”

“For nearly 65 years, St. Thomas University (STU) has educated a diversity of national, local, and international students, helping them become ethical leaders for our global community,” said STU President David A. Armstrong, J.D. “Today, the university recognizes Denny’s efforts to promote human and civil rights, education, and community involvement. We thank Denny’s for their generous contribution to fund scholarships at the Benjamin L. Crump College of Law and its Center for Social Justice, which are training the world’s future servant leaders.”

St. Thomas University Benjamin L. Crump College of Law is one of America’s fastest growing and most diverse law schools, with a 71% enrollment increase since 2018 and over 300 incoming students expected in fall 2024. Black and Hispanic students make up roughly three-quarters of STU’s nearly 6,500 overall enrollment and that of the law school, which recently earned the second-highest bar passage rate in Florida.

For more information on Denny’s Community campaign and DE&I efforts, please visit http://www.dennys.com.

About Denny’s Corporation 

Denny’s is a Spartanburg, S.C.-based family dining restaurant brand that has been welcoming guests to our booths for more than 70 years. Our guiding principle is simple: We love to feed people. Denny’s provides craveable meals at a meaningful value across breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late night. Whether it’s at our brick-and-mortar locations, via Denny’s on Demand (the first delivery platform in the family dining segment), or at The Meltdown, Banda Burrito, and The Burger Den, our three virtual restaurant concepts, Denny’s is ready to delight guests whenever and however they want to order. Our longstanding commitment to supporting our local communities in need is brought to life with our Mobile Relief Diner (that delivers hot meals to our neighbors during times of disaster), Denny’s Hungry for Education™ scholarship program, and our annual fundraiser with No Kid Hungry.

Denny’s is one of the largest franchised full-service restaurant brands in the world, based on the number of restaurants. As of March 27, 2024, the Company consisted of 1,553 restaurants, 1,489 of which were franchised and licensed restaurants and 64 of which were company-operated. This includes 168 restaurants in Canada, Costa Rica, Curacao, El Salvador, Guam, Guatemala, Honduras, Indonesia, Mexico, New Zealand, the Philippines, Puerto Rico, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. 

To learn more about Denny’s, please visit our brand website at http://www.dennys.com or the brand’s social channels via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, TikTok, LinkedIn or YouTube.

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Hope Wade, Jamaican-American Fashion Designer, Honored by School District

NEW YORK CARIB NEWS — Among the honorees this year was Jamaican-born Hope Wade, founder of Hope Wade Designs and creator and executive producer of Rockland Fashion Week, who was selected for the 2024 video because of her strong support of her community, her belief in “giving back,” and her mentorship of high school students who have an interest in fashion.
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By Mell P | NY Carib News

In honor of Women’s History Month for the third consecutive year, East Ramapo Central School District rolled out an exclusive series of videos celebrating the vital role women in the community have had in our society: The East Ramapo Central School District Regent Judith Johnson Sheroes Series.

Among the honorees this year was Jamaican-born Hope Wade, founder of Hope Wade Designs and creator and executive producer of Rockland Fashion Week, who was selected for the 2024 video because of her strong support of her community, her belief in “giving back,” and her mentorship of high school students who have an interest in fashion.

She has crafted gowns for Miss Jamaica World, Miss Jamaica Universe, Miss Jamaica Nation, Miss Intercontinental pageants, and various other international competitions. Wade’s creations enjoy a significant celebrity following. Her designs have been donned by Academy and Grammy Award-winner Darlene Love during performances for former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House.

Wade responded to this honor saying, “To be called a Sheroe in any capacity is humbling but to think that your name is esteemed in the same light as Regent Judith Johnson is daunting. And I think what really got to me was that the video would be shown to all the students in the E. Ramapo School District. Wow! (I had the honor of meeting her once when I was invited by President Michael Baston of Rockland Community College to a breakfast at the college.)”

In 2022, East Ramapo rolled out the sheroes series for the first time, and it was so well received by the administrators, principals, teachers, students and community members. Each year since, the committee of devoted community members has been working with the District to identify new sheroes, compile their impressive bios, and produce several sheroes videos for East Ramapo students to view and appreciate.

The members of the East Ramapo Central School District Regent Judith Johnson Sheroes Series include: Carole Anderson, Anita Cunningham, Jean Fields, Drusilla Kinzonzi, Teri Mersel, Charlotte Ramsey, and Robin Wren, along with District team of Ellen Andriello, Executive Director for Elementary Schools and Dr. Augustina West, Assistant Superintendent for Secondary Schools.

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Rajah Caruth: Young Trailblazer of NASCAR

ELITE Sit in 1 & 2: ELITE Public School staff and students staged a sit-in at Vallejo City Hall on Wednesday afternoon to protest the City Council’s decision to vote against their Major Use Permit to expand into downtown. Photo by Magaly Muñoz.
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ELITE Charter School Conducts Sit-In Protest at Vallejo City Hall After City Council Vote

San Francisco Mayor London N. Breed (File Photo)
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Mayor London Breed: State Awards San Francisco Over $37M for Affordable Housing

Peggy Moore and Hope Wood, photo from their hopeactionchnage.com website
California Black Media1 month ago

Activist and Organizer Peggy Moore and Wife Die in Fatal Car Crash

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California Black Media4 weeks ago

Expect to See a New Flat Rate Fee of $24 on Your Electricity Bill

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