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The making of restorative justice public policy gumbo

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “There are so many people in silos doing this work, but there hasn’t been a space where people can all come together and do it collectively,” said Tim Green, co-founder of the symposium and founder & executive director of The Dividend, a social emotional empowerment organization for youth.

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By Erica R. Williams, Special to The New Tri-State Defender

“Don’t be afraid to disrupt the system,” Shelby County Commissioner Tami Sawyer said to a crowd of advocates, parents, and educators gathered at the inaugural Public Policy and Restorative Justice Symposium.

This charge came after Sawyer gave a personal account of her experiences with racial biases while attending a local private middle school, where she said there were only a handful of other black students.

“I was the only person in my class to ever get detention,” she said. “I would get it for things like being stopped in the hall because they thought my skirt was too short, although I was the tallest girl in 7th and 8th grade. Or because they thought I was talking back when I asked questions.”

Sawyer, who was the first guest speaker at the symposium, set the tone for the conversations that would follow throughout the five-hour event, hosted by the Memphis Restorative Justice Coalition. The Memphis-based group consists of a collection of four organizations working together to reduce the rate of suspensions for African American and Latino students.

“There are so many people in silos doing this work, but there hasn’t been a space where people can all come together and do it collectively,” said Tim Green, co-founder of the symposium and founder & executive director of The Dividend, a social emotional empowerment organization for youth.

Saturday’s panelists included, Pametria Brown (empowerment expert), Shahidah Jones (Black Lives Matter), Archie Moss Jr. (principal, Bruce Elementary) and Cameron Jones (recent high school graduate). State Sen. Raumesh Akbari (D-29) served as the moderator for the panel.

Earlier this year, Akbari co-sponsored a bill requiring local education organizations to provide adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) training to teachers. During the symposium, the Akbari noted that understanding childhood trauma could aid in preventing some disciplinary infractions and biases.

Organizers of the event said the symposium grew from an immense need to have conversations surrounding restorative justice practices in schools. Emerging statistics back up their claims.

According to a 2019 study conducted by a group of Princeton University researchers, African-American students are four times more likely to be suspended than white students. The study also suggests that these students usually face more challenging life outcomes as a result of the harsh disciplinary actions.

“When I was in the classroom in 2012, that’s when I saw how much we needed restorative practices in schools,” Green said. “I saw students get suspended for things that we could have just talked about.”

Cameron Jones, the youngest panelist, gave his personal account of biases while a student.

“I noticed that I was treated differently when I wore Jordan’s than when I wore button-ups and chinos,” said Jones. “There were definitely predetermined stereotypes.”

Dr. Joris Ray, Shelby County Schools superintendent, who received the Pioneer in Justice Award at the symposium, said he and his team have restorative justice plans in the works for the 2019-20 school year.

“How are we going to change the narrative for all children particularly African American males?” he asked the crowd rhetorically, adding that his leadership team will launch an equity office within SCS.

“I look forward to pioneering justice for all students.”

According the Restorative Justice Coalition, although suspension rates are down in SCS, 95 percent of the students who receive suspension are African American or Latino.

“We have an opportunity to move Memphis forward through our kids,” Sawyer said. “And it starts with restorative justice.”

With a long-term goal of establishing partnerships with local schools to facilitate mandatory restorative justice training, organizers said the symposium is just a small piece of the puzzle.

“We are making restorative justice public policy gumbo,” Green said during the event.
“And we hope everyone who attended the symposium will leave with something that they can take back to their homes or schools to begin implementing immediately.”

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PRESS ROOM: Black Female Excellence Takes Center Stage at St. Jude Spirit Of The Dream

NNPA NEWSWIRE — During the St. Jude Spirit of the Dream event, guests heard about the strides made by St. Jude on racial equity since its founding in 1962 as the South’s first fully integrated children’s hospital. As part of this commitment to racial equity, St. Jude launched a sickle cell program in 1968 to study this disease, which disproportionately affects African American people. That program has grown to become one of the largest in the U.S.
The post PRESS ROOM: Black Female Excellence Takes Center Stage at St. Jude Spirit Of The Dream first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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Astronaut, doctor and non-profit executive are honored for outstanding achievements in advancing lifesaving mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – For the first time in its history, the St. Jude Spirit of the Dream event selected women for each of its highest accolades: the St. Jude Spirit of the Dream award and the Legacy Award. The event, held Thursday, Sept. 29 celebrates the achievements of African Americans who embody the lifesaving mission of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and its founder, Danny Thomas who believed that no child, regardless of race should die in the dawn of life.

Dr. Patricia Adams-Graves, professor in the hematology/oncology division at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center and a provider at Regional One Health is one of few hematologists in Memphis to serve and care for adults living with Sickle Cell Disease, and Dr. Sian Proctor, an accomplished civilian astronaut, pilot, advocate for women of color in the space industry, entrepreneur, and professor of American geology, were both presented with the Spirit of the Dream award. Emily Greer, a 30-year executive leader, most recently as Chief Administrative Officer for ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude, received the St. Jude Legacy Award for her tireless service to St. Jude as a trusted advisor to CEO, Rick Shadyac. Though Greer retired in 2021, she remains committed to the mission of St. Jude.

Each honoree has made a significant impact far beyond their local communities. Together, their multiple accomplishments reflect the foundational pillars of St. Jude: research, treatment, and philanthropy.

“I didn’t come to ALSAC almost 30 years ago with the idea of sitting here today,” said Greer. “I came with the idea of serving these children and these families who get the worst news of all: that your child has cancer. And I just tried to do my small part in making a difference in their lives. It’s an honor to be recognized in this way to do work that was my privilege to do.”

The event also comes on the heels of the first anniversary of Inspiration4, the first all-civilian spaceflight to orbit the Earth, which landed safely back on Earth thanks to Dr. Proctor’s skillful navigation as the mission pilot. Inspiration4 captivated space fans the world over and raised nearly $250 million for the lifesaving mission of St. Jude.

“When I won the prosperity seat on the Inspiration4 mission, my entire life shifted,” said Dr. Proctor. “Becoming connected to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the mission of ending childhood cancer resonated with me to my core and allowed me to unleash the very best version of myself.”

During the St. Jude Spirit of the Dream event, guests heard about the strides made by St. Jude on racial equity since its founding in 1962 as the South’s first fully integrated children’s hospital. As part of this commitment to racial equity, St. Jude launched a sickle cell program in 1968 to study this disease, which disproportionately affects African American people. That program has grown to become one of the largest in the U.S.

As a physician in Memphis, Dr. Adams-Graves continues to extend quality care to sickle cell patients in the greater Midsouth region. “Receiving this award is an honor, pleasure and validation of the service that I have been walking in my life to improve the quality of life for individuals, both children and adults, living with sickle cell disease,” said Dr. Adams-Graves.

Past honorees include Dr. Rudolph Jackson, one of the first Black doctors at St. Jude, Penny Hardaway, University of Memphis Tigers head men’s basketball coach, and the city of Memphis.

To learn more and donate, visit stjude.org/spiritofthedream.

About St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital®

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Its purpose is clear: Finding cures. Saving children.® It is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20% to more than 80% since the hospital opened in 1962. St. Jude won’t stop until no child dies from cancer. St. Jude shares the breakthroughs it makes, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children. Because of generous donors, families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food, so they can focus on helping their child live. Visit St. Jude Inspire to discover powerful St. Jude stories of hope, strength, love and kindness. Join the St. Jude mission by visiting stjude.org, liking St. Jude on Facebook, following St. Jude on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and TikTok, and subscribing to its YouTube channel.

The post PRESS ROOM: Black Female Excellence Takes Center Stage at St. Jude Spirit Of The Dream first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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Uniformed & Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) Vote-By-Mail Ballots to Be Mailed for the November 8, 2022, General Election

WESTSIDE GAZETTE — The deadline to request a UOCAVA Vote-By-Mail ballot is 5:00 p.m. October 29, 2022. UOCAVA Vote-By-Mail ballots can be returned by mail or faxed directly to the Supervisor of Elections office. Ballots cannot be emailed to us.
The post Uniformed & Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) Vote-By-Mail Ballots to Be Mailed for the November 8, 2022, General Election first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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Submitted by Ivan Castro | The Westside Gazette

BROWARD COUNTY, FL. — Over 4,000 Vote-By-Mail ballots for the General Election were sent to military and overseas citizens on September 24, 2022. In addition to registering to vote online, UOCAVA voters may request a Vote-By-Mail Ballot by using the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA).

The deadline to request a UOCAVA Vote-By-Mail ballot is 5:00 p.m. October 29, 2022.

UOCAVA Vote-By-Mail ballots can be returned by mail or faxed directly to the Supervisor of Elections office. Ballots cannot be emailed to us.

An overseas voter has 10 extra days from election day for their Vote-By-Mail ballot to be received. The ballot must be postmarked or dated by Election Day November 8th.

Important Dates and Information for the General Election

  • New voters must be registered by Tuesday, October 11, 2022
  • Election Day is Tuesday, November 8, 2022

For further information regarding UOCAVA voters visit http://www.browardvotes.gov/Voter-Information/Oversees-Military-Voters.

Please visit our website browardvotes.gov, follow us on social media @browardvotes, and for media questions please contact: icastro@browardvotes

The post Uniformed & Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) Vote-By-Mail Ballots to Be Mailed for the November 8, 2022, General Election appeared first on The Westside Gazette.

The post Uniformed & Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) Vote-By-Mail Ballots to Be Mailed for the November 8, 2022, General Election first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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What Hip-Hop Means to Benny The Butcher

NNPA NEWSWIRE — Hip-hop means everything to Benny The Butcher. Hip-Hop is the reason why I’m here. You see I’m nominated for Collab of the Year. You see I’m nominated for Lyricist of the Year. It means everything. I’m going to be there on the red carpet tomorrow with my s— on like this.
The post What Hip-Hop Means to Benny The Butcher first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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The breakthrough for the Bufflao, New York, MC came later than most, but it’s here and it’s glorious

By Rashad Miligan | RollingOut.com

You never know when your life is going to change. Hip-hop has traditionally been considered as a space for young people. Two of this generation’s most influential artists, Chief Keef and Pop Smoke, both had their breakthroughs as teenagers. Nas released one of the greatest hip-hop albums of all time with Illmatic at 17.

For Benny The Butcher, however, the breakthrough came at 34 in 2019 with the rise of his rap group Griselda, based out of Buffalo, New York. The group helped bring the grimy East Coast sound of rapping about selling cocaine over hard-hitting instrumentals back to listeners’ ears.

“He’s fam,” Wicked Money Family co-founder Iren “IG” Golder told rolling out. “East Coast represent. Bringing New York back, from the music to the production.”

During BET Hip-Hop Awards weekend in Atlanta, The Butcher spoke to rolling out about what hip-hop means to him, and what’s coming up next.

ATL Jacob is making his debut as an artist and his label has been signed under Republic Records. What is your message to ATL Jacob?

I want to say man he’s a hustler. He goes crazy. He and all his boys go crazy. That’s why I f— with them n—–. And as an artist, I’d be in the studio and that n—- playing s—, nasty s—. As good as anybody else I’ve heard, so I’m excited for him to do his thing.

What does hip-hop mean to Benny The Butcher?

Hip-hop means everything to Benny The Butcher. Hip-Hop is the reason why I’m here. You see I’m nominated for Collab of the Year. You see I’m nominated for Lyricist of the Year. It means everything. I’m going to be there on the red carpet tomorrow with my s— on like this.

What’s next for you?

Working with ATL Jacob, working with Symba. Just f— with everybody, getting game from the OGs, everybody. [Golder] is a hustler.

The post What hip-hop means to Benny The Butcher appeared first on Rolling Out.

The post What Hip-Hop Means to Benny The Butcher first appeared on BlackPressUSA.

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