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PRESS ROOM: Black Women’s Roundtable Launches ‘BWR Justice Project’

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “The BWR Justice Project was developed to address key race, pocketbook and safety issues identified in the 5th Annual BWR/ESSENCE Magazine ‘Power of the Sister Vote’ Poll (BWR/Essence ’19 Poll) released in September 2019 and other past research conducted by NCBCP and BWR. The BWR/ESSENCE ’19 Poll indicated the top issues Black women are most concerned about are racism/hate crimes, affordable health care, equal rights/equal pay, criminal justice/policing reform; affordable healthcare; gun violence and gun safety, affordable housing/gentrification, college affordability/student loan debt, high cost of prescription drugs and more,” said NCBCP President & CEO and National BWR convener, Melanie Campbell.

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The BWR Justice Project is supported by The Moriah Fund, Sephora, Family Values @Work Labor Project for Working Families, Oxfam America and Groundswell Fund. (Photo: iStockphoto / NNPA)

To Address Racial, Economic, Gender and Health Bias Impacting Black Women and Their Families

Washington, DC – In early November, the Black Women’s Roundtable (BWR) launched its “BWR Racial, Economic, Health, Gender and Reproductive Justice Project” (BWR Justice Project) to address the racial, gender, economic and health bias impacting Black women and their families in Atlanta, GA with a BWR Reproductive Justice Forum at the Georgia State Capitol. Over the next 12 months, The BWR Justice Project civic engagement and organizing activities will also take place in AL, FL, MI, MS, NC, OH, PA, SC, VA and the DC/MD/VA metro area. The Black Women’s Roundtable (BWR) serves as the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation’s (NCBCP) leadership development, mentoring, intergenerational and power building arm for Black women and girls.

NCBCP President & CEO and National BWR convener, Melanie Campbell shared, “The BWR Justice Project was developed to address key race, pocketbook and safety issues identified in the 5th Annual BWR/ESSENCE Magazine ‘Power of the Sister Vote’ Poll (BWR/Essence ’19 Poll) released in September 2019 and other past research conducted by NCBCP and BWR. The BWR/ESSENCE ’19 Poll indicated the top issues Black women are most concerned about are racism/hate crimes, affordable health care, equal rights/equal pay, criminal justice/policing reform; affordable healthcare; gun violence and gun safety, affordable housing/gentrification, college affordability/student loan debt, high cost of prescription drugs and more.”

Additionally, economic justice research conducted by the Black Women’s Roundtable (including the 2019 BWR Report on the “State of Black Women in the U. S.”), shows that “Black women are still the foundation of Black family financial power. And for most Black women, work Is not an option, it’s a necessary precondition for survival for themselves and their families. As a result, some 70% of Black women are primary breadwinners for their family unit. This compares to only 24% of white women who are the critical lynchpin in their family’s economic well-being. Over half (55%) of all Black families with children are headed by a single mother. And among single mother-headed families, fully 46% live in poverty.”

With regard to gender and health justice, BWR-sponsored studies have also revealed that the top issues that Black women want their national elected officials to address are to protect Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security and affordable healthcare. Further, reproductive justice issues of concern to black women include — the escalation of attacks on women’s rights to control their own bodies is on the rise by right wing extremists on the federal and state level. Over the past year, several state legislatures have also passed laws to limit women’s reproductive rights. These states include Alabama, Arkansas, Florida and Georgia. Planned Parenthood has reported that “Anti-women’s health politicians are attacking access to reproductive health care and sex education at the state level through dangerous bills, regulations and executive actions. These attacks include attempting to ‘defund’ Planned Parenthood health centers, limit health care coverage for birth control, and promote abstinence-only-until-marriage programs.”

The BWR Justice Project goals and outcomes include:

  • Promoting the adoption of work/family policies for women and working families to achieve security and prosperity now and for future generations, including paid leave, paid sick days, equal rights, equal pay, entrepreneurship, raising minimum wage and workers’ rights on a federal, state and local level.
  • Promoting quality of life policies to secure economic, health & reproductive justice, including affordable healthcare, protect Medicaid, Medicare & Social Security and other safety net federal and state-based policies.
  • Focus on engaging the powerful intergenerational voices of Black women to educate local, state and national leaders and policy-makers on the importance of enacting public policies to improve health care, economic opportunity, quality of employment and public education for Black women, families and communities.

To date, BWR Justice civic engagement and organizing activities have included:

  • GEORGIA – BWR Reproductive Justice Forum in Atlanta, GA on November 8, 2019 at the Georgia State Capitol, focused on reproductive health care, reproductive rights, gender justice, LGBTQ rights, maternal mortality and other social justice issues impacting Black women, hosted by Clayton County BWR/HBCU Green Fund & GA BWR/GCPA;
  • FLORIDA – BWR Sisters Can We Talk? Women’s Listening Session, focused on women’s health, reproductive rights and diabetes awareness, at Orleans Bistro in Titusville, FL on November 16, hosted by FL BWR/FCBCP & Worldwide Solutions;
  • MICHIGAN – BWR Sistahs Can We Talk? Black Women Reproductive Justice and We Count” Forum in Kalamazoo, MI on November 17 hosted by Kalamazoo BWR and Mothers of Hope; and
  • ALABAMA–BWR “Sisters Can We Talk?” Listening Session, Aunt Katie’s Community Garden in Dothan, AL, focused on racial equity and gender justice issues, on November 22, hosted by Southern AL BWR.

Upcoming BWR Justice Project activities include:

  • ALABAMA – BWR “Racial Equality: A Community Discussion” hosted by Southern Alabama BWR at Aunt Katie’s Community Garden, 602 Linden Street, in Dothan, AL on December 6th.
  • MICHIGAN – BWR “Black Women Matter Summit” hosted by BWR Metro Detroit, at Your Emerging Space – Y.E.S., 7 North Saginaw Street – 3A, Pontiac, MI, focused on racial and reproductive justice and other pocketbook policies impacting families, on December 7th.
  • FLORIDA – BWR “Healthy, Wealthy, Wise Women’s Health & Wellness Retreat,” Oak Plantation Resort, 4090 Enchanted Oaks Circle, Kissimmee, FL, hosted by Osceola FL BWR & Hugs Therapy, on December 14th.

In 2020, The BWR Justice Project will include organizing BWR ”Power of the Sister Vote” townhall meetings during the 2020 presidential election primaries; release of its 2020 Presidential Election Non-Partisan Voter Guide; hosting its Annual BWR Women of Power National Summit on March 4 – 8, 2020 in Arlington, VA; as well as forums, listening sessions and summits organized by BWR state-based networks in MS, NC, OH, PA and SC.

The BWR Justice Project is supported by The Moriah Fund, Sephora, Family Values @Work Labor Project for Working Families, Oxfam America and Groundswell Fund.

The National Coalition on Black Civic Participation (NCBCP) is one of the most active civil rights and social justice organizations in the nation “dedicated to increasing civic engagement, economic and voter empowerment in Black America.” The Black Women’s Roundtable (BWR) is the women and girls empowerment arm of the NCBCP. The BWR is at the forefront of championing just and equitable public policies that centers racial, economic and gender justice to promote health and wellness, economic security and prosperity, quality public education and global empowerment for and with Black women and girls in the South and key states including: AL, FL, GA, MI, MS, NC, OH, PA, SC, VA and DC/MD/VA Metro areas.

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IN MEMORIAM International Soccer Icon Pelé Dies at 82

NNPA NEWSWIRE — Sometimes called “Pérola Negra” (“Black Pearl”), Pelé became a Brazilian national hero. According to Britannica, he combined kicking power and accuracy with a remarkable ability to anticipate other players’ moves. 

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Born Edson Arantes do Nascimento in Três Corações, Brazil, on Oct. 23, 1940, Pelé became soccer’s first superstar.
Born Edson Arantes do Nascimento in Três Corações, Brazil, on Oct. 23, 1940, Pelé became soccer’s first superstar.

By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent
@StacyBrownMedia

Pelé, the international star who was instrumental in three World Cup championships with Brazil across three decades and who energized U.S. soccer with the New York Cosmos in the 1970s, has died.

The 82-year-old legend had been hospitalized since November, and his doctors reported that Pelé’s cancer had advanced, requiring care related to renal and cardiac dysfunction.

He has been receiving regular treatment since doctors removed a tumor from his colon in 2021.

“Father. My strength is yours,” the international star’s son, Edinho, posted on social media.

Born Edson Arantes do Nascimento in Três Corações, Brazil, on Oct. 23, 1940, Pelé became soccer’s first superstar.

He led the Brazilian national teams to World Cup glory in 1958, 1962, and 1970.

In 1956, he joined the Santos Football Club, where he played inside left forward, winning nine São Paulo league championships and, in 1962 and 1963, the Libertadores Cup and the Intercontinental Club Cup.

Sometimes called “Pérola Negra” (“Black Pearl”), Pelé became a Brazilian national hero. According to Britannica, he combined kicking power and accuracy with a remarkable ability to anticipate other players’ moves.

“After the 1958 World Cup, Pelé was declared a national treasure by the Brazilian government to ward off large offers from European clubs and ensure that he would remain in Brazil,” Britannica researchers wrote.

On Nov. 19, 1969, in his 909th first-class match, he scored his 1,000th goal.

Pelé made his international debut in 1957 at age 16 and played his first game in the World Cup finals in Sweden the following year.

The Brazilian manager was initially hesitant to play his young star. But, according to Britannica, when Pelé finally reached the field, he had an immediate impact, rattling the post with one shot and collecting an assist.

He had a hat trick in the semifinal against France and two goals in the championship game, where Brazil defeated Sweden 5–2. At the 1962 World Cup finals, Pelé tore a thigh muscle in the second match and had to sit out the remainder of the tournament.

Nonetheless, Brazil went on to claim its second World Cup title.

Researchers said rough play and injuries turned the 1966 World Cup into a disaster for Brazil and Pelé, as the team went out in the first round, and he contemplated retiring from World Cup play.

Returning in 1970 for one more World Cup tournament, he teamed with young stars Jairzinho and Rivelino to claim Brazil’s third title and permanent ownership of the Jules Rimet Trophy. Pelé finished his World Cup career, scoring 12 goals in 14 games.

Pelé’s electrifying play and penchant for spectacular goals made him a worldwide star.

His team Santos toured internationally to take full advantage of his popularity. For example, in 1967, he and his team traveled to Nigeria, where a 48-hour cease-fire in that nation’s civil war was called to allow all to watch the great player.

Pelé announced his retirement in 1974 but, in 1975, agreed to a three-year $7 million contract with the New York Cosmos of the North American Soccer League and to promote the game in the United States. He retired after leading the Cosmos to the league championship in 1977.

Pelé was the recipient of the International Peace Award in 1978. In 1980 he was named Athlete of the Century by the French sports publication L’Equipe, and he received the same honor in 1999 from the International Olympic Committee. In 2014 the Pelé Museum opened in Santos, Brazil.

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COMMENTARY: Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin: Avoid Burnout with These Simple Tips

THE AFRO — Although it cannot be medically diagnosed, burnout can lead people to lose their sense of self and feel as if they are not accomplishing enough. Since the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic, the American Psychological Association found that the risk of burnout has increased for workers due to extra stress, increased household demands and longer working hours. 
The post COMMENTARY: Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin: Avoid Burnout with These Simple Tips first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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By Megan Sayles | AFRO Business Writer
Report for America Corps Member
msayles@afro.com

We’ve all heard the age-old saying that “hard work pays off.”  But, sometimes, working too hard can do more harm than good.

“Burnout” is a form of work-related stress in which an individual experiences physical, emotional or mental exhaustion caused by their job’s demands. It can also make workers feel distanced from their jobs and engender negative feelings about them, according to the World Health Organization.

Although it cannot be medically diagnosed, burnout can lead people to lose their sense of self and feel as if they are not accomplishing enough. Since the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic, the American Psychological Association found that the risk of burnout has increased for workers due to extra stress, increased household demands and longer working hours.

This makes it even more important for people to know the signs of burnout and the strategies to combat it.

Natasha Charles is the founder and CEO of Intuitive Coaching with Natasha Charles, a comprehensive life coaching and consulting firm. She created the business after gaining 20 years in senior administration roles.

Charles was motivated to open the firm in 2018 out of a desire to create a business focused on inspiring continuous improvement. There, she works with individuals and executives to create lives that they love and offers them personalized solutions to address critical work and business challenges.

“It’s really about thinking about you, the person, and all that you are,” Charles said. “People tend to be very focused on one aspect of their life, and a lot of times, it’s about their career, so it’s really about making space for all of your goals and all of your dreams.”

When someone experiences burnout, Charles said they could be actively doing their job while simultaneously worrying about their other responsibilities and priorities, whether personal or work-related. She also stressed that burnout can be experienced no matter what profession you are in and what you are being paid.

Aside from the physical and mental impacts of stress, burnout can impact finances if it causes an employee to take extended periods of time off or miss work, according to Charles. It can also reduce their productivity.

In the beginning of 2022, the term “quiet quitting” emerged, and for some, it’s being used as a method to avoid burnout. It involves individuals meeting the minimum requirements of their job descriptions, investing no extra time or effort than what is mandatory.

For Charles, quiet quitting is a signal that a person is not fulfilled by their job and may need to think about changing workplaces or careers.

“I get that people are not always able to up and quit, and it can take time to find what that next role is,” Charles said. “I would come from a space of encouraging the person to start thinking about what that is. What is it that you ultimately desire to be doing in your life and seeing your work?”

One of the most important steps in reducing and preventing burnout is educating yourself about the syndrome, so you can be aware of the warning signs, according to Charles. She also said it was crucial for employers to talk to their employees about it.

Awareness can help prevent the shame and guilt that comes with burnout and allow people to give themselves grace.

After a person has weighed whether they are experiencing burnout or not, they should think about how they want to confront it. This could include engaging in self-care, asking for extra support at work or home, and creating stronger boundaries between their personal and professional lives.

When burnout is impacting your performance, it’s time to consider making a career change, Charles said.

To ensure your work life does not invade your personal life, Charles said people need to assess the goals they have for all areas of their life. Once you’ve set goals, it’s easier to devise a plan and set the necessary boundaries to achieve them.

Charles also said it’s important to carve out time for yourself where you’re not constantly checking your phone or email for work reasons.

“There is life beyond your work. There is an entire world out there to be discovered,” Charles said. “There’s a world within us to be discovered as well, and I encourage everyone to invest in discovering those pieces.”

This article originally appeared in The Afro.

The post COMMENTARY: Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin: Avoid Burnout with These Simple Tips first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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Tory Lanez Found Guilty in Meg Thee Stallion Shooting 

NNPA NEWSWIRE — The case fired up social media and highlighted the misogyny that still reigns in hip hop. Many on Twitter routinely attacked Megan, accusing her of lying among other vicious vitriolic comments.
The post Tory Lanez Found Guilty in Meg Thee Stallion Shooting  first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent
@StacyBrownMedia

Canadian rapper Tory Lanez faces more than 20 years in prison and deportation after a jury in Los Angeles found him guilty in the 2020 shooting of hip hop star Megan Thee Stallion.

Lane, 30, was found guilty of three felony counts, including assault with an unregistered semiautomatic weapon, carrying a loaded gun, and discharging a firearm in a vehicle with gross negligence.

The case fired up social media and highlighted the misogyny that still reigns in hip hop. Many on Twitter routinely attacked Megan, accusing her of lying among other vicious vitriolic comments.

The 27-year-old Megan, whose real name is Megan Pete, testified that Lanez offered her hush money and didn’t care about her injuries and pain suffered because he shot her.

Lanez, who declined to testify, claimed there was another shooter, Pete’s friend who was also arguing with the hit maker as they drove home from a party.

“[Lanez] told me to dance,” Pete told the jury, adding that he also cursed at her following the shooting.

Sentencing for Lanez is scheduled for Jan. 27.

“You showed incredible courage and vulnerability with your testimony despite repeated and grotesque attacks that you did not deserve,” Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon said, referring to Pete.

“You faced unjust and despicable scrutiny that no woman should ever face, and you have been an inspiration to others across LA County and the nation.”

The post Tory Lanez Found Guilty in Meg Thee Stallion Shooting  first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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