Neighborhoods Organizing for Change

Recent Articles

Transit riders bring concerns to Met Council

Routes, fares, shelters among issues raised in community engagement session
 
 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

Transit equity means more than additional bus stops or faster trains. Local residents are saying it also means an equitable voice in transportation decisions. “Equity is not just a thing, but it is about money,” said Neighborhoods Organizing for Change (NOC) head Anthony Newby after a May 10 public meeting attended by over 100 community members held at his organization’s West Broadway office. “That money needs to show up on a contract, on a piece of paper that needs to be held accountable to.”

Many in the audience were regular Metro Transit riders who strongly suggested that a transit advisory committee composed of both community members and the Metropolitan Council be established. Four Metropolitan Council members were there: Gary Cunningham, Adam Duininck, Jennifer Munt and James Brimeyer, all of whom told the audience that they were not authorized to make any final decisions but promised to take it to the entire 17-member body. Continue Reading →

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Redlining targets Black Minnesotans and neighborhoods

Wells Fargo leads pack according to U of M report on sub-prime lenders

By Charles Hallman
Staff Writer

 

A new University of Minnesota Law School study shows that Blacks and other communities of color and low-income residents in the Twin Cities still lack access to credit. It is an update of a 2009 study that found that Blacks and Latinos — even with “very high income[s] — were much more likely to get sub-prime loans than very low-income White applicants.”

“It’s hard to believe that systemically a Black family that is making $157,000 a year is less likely to qualify for a prime loan than a White family that earns 40 [thousand a year],” noted Myron Orfield, the director of the Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity, which is housed at the U of M Law School. The report also shows that Blacks and other people of color who live in two North Minneapolis neighborhoods had the highest number of sub-prime loans compared to Whites in the same neighborhoods: 59 percent for people of color compared to 42 percent Whites in Near North; and 55 percent for people of color in Camden compared to 29 percent for Whites. These two areas also “were most dramatically affected” among Twin Cities neighborhoods. “Our report [reveals] discrimination in lending against individuals on the basis of race, and also discrimination in lending against neighborhoods on the basis of race,” noted Orfield, who heads the U of M Law School’s

Institute on Metropolitan Opportunity (IMO). Continue Reading →

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Humphrey Public Affairs panel agrees: King’s Dream remains a dream, not our reality

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

The 1964 Civil Rights Act became law 50 years ago, and the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School of Public Affairs this year is hosting a series of events to commemorate the historic legislation. Last week’s panel discussion at Cowles Auditorium with local civil rights activists was the beginning. Roy Wilkins Center for Human Relations and Social Justice Chair Dr. Samuel Myers characterized the January 23 event, cosponsored by the center and the African American Leadership Forum, as “a critical discourse and discussion about how far have we come and where we need to go.”

University of St. Thomas Law Professor Nekima Levy-Pounds, the event’s keynote speaker, told the audience of around 40 people that Dr. King’s legacy too often is romanticized, especially his 1963 I Have A Dream speech. “That speech was amazing — according to many people, it is the greatest speech that’s ever been made in American history,” she said. Continue Reading →

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