North Minneapolis

Recent Articles

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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Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund, Year X does it again!

 

Amazing — we’re blessed to recognize that we have been given another day to try and get our lives straight. It really hits you when you look up and realize it’s been 11 years since April 10, 2003, the day Carol Fitzgerald died of breast cancer. This past weekend, the 10th annual Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund (CFMF) celebrated the legacy of Carol’s life with the benefit at the Metropolitan Ballroom Friday night in Golden Valley and the celebration of her life and work Saturday at Martin Luther King Center in Minneapolis. It’s not easy asking people you know and don’t know to trust you and help you with raising money and taking their time to benefit others. But that is what we are about with the Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund. Continue Reading →

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What health legacy will you leave?

Upcoming health conference to address specific concerns of Black women
 
By Brandi D. Phillips 

Contributing Writer

 

Happy, healthy, family, friends, community, intergenerational, motivational: These are a few words used to describe the upcoming March 19 conference sponsored by Neighborhood HealthSource and many others. The conference is titled “Loving Yourself, Staying Well,” and those simple words seem to be a popular topic of conversation these days. Everywhere you turn, health topics are being discussed. Breast cancer is no exception. In fact, it is one of the biggest concerns in our community these days. Continue Reading →

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President Obama visits St. Paul to promote transportation budget

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

Reportedly Barack Obama’s approval rating in Minnesota is at its lowest since he became president over five years ago. But based on the loud, enthusiastic reception he received last week during a stop in St. Paul, his popularity apparently has not yet wane. “We love you,” said someone from the overflow crowd. “I love you back. Continue Reading →

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City of Mpls committed to Northside economic growth projects

Jobs, housing, support services for local residents is top priority for CPED
 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

The City of Minneapolis has recently committed to help businesses and affordable housing growth in North Minneapolis, according to their Community Planning and Economic Development (CPED) office. The MSR spoke in-depth with CPED Director Cathy Polasky, who described their level of financial investment. “We actually spend a lot of time and resources in North Minneapolis. During the recession and following the [2011] tornado, we were making a lot of small loans to help people stay in business or fix up damage, and now we are seeing [Northside] businesses at the point where they are expanding.”

CPED last year “invested” almost $4 million or 45 percent of the department’s total budget in Northside services as Northside Economic Opportunity Network (NEON) and nearly $3 million dollars in housing projects as well, Polasky announced. “We are looking at developing properties, and we also are looking to businesses that are likely to have job opportunities for Northside residents,” she explained. Continue Reading →

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Alarming ‘retirement racial divide’ could leave millions of Black elders at risk

AARP pushes for state retirement savings plan to bridge the gap
By Charles Hallman Staff Writer Are working-age Blacks and other people of color preparing themselves for retirement? A new study by the National Institute of Retirement Security (NIRS) claims a “racial divide” exists in establishing retirement savings. The nonprofit NIRS, based in Washington, D.C., released last month “Race and Retirement Insecurity in the United States.” In a press release, report author and NIRS Research Manager Nari Rhee said, “I’m alarmed by the severity of the retirement racial divide. It’s well documented that regardless of race, the typical working-age American household is far off-track toward accumulating sufficient savings to meet their basic needs in retirement. “We find an even worse situation for Blacks, Latinos and Asians,” continued Rhee. Continue Reading →

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Mayor-elect looks ahead to new job: ‘I’m very, very excited’

First order of business: addressing the racial achievement gap
 

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

Betsy Hodges remarked last week that she doesn’t recall ever before meeting in the small den-like room on the third floor of City Hall. However, the room and the area it’s located in will become hers in a couple of weeks. The soon-to-be-former city council member will be sworn in on January 2, 2014 as the city’s second-ever female mayor. “I’m just grateful for the opportunity to talk to you and the community through your newspaper,” said Hodges during a December 10 interview with the MSR. “I campaigned consistently on two main things. One of them is building this city, and the second is closing the gaps that divide us racially and economically.”

Hodges said her “two main pieces of business” include the seemingly widening achievement gap between Blacks and other students in the city’s public schools. Continue Reading →

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Can foreign investors rescue North Minneapolis?

New proposal would match Asian employers with Black workforce
 
By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

Is foreign investment the key to economic development in North Minneapolis? The jointly created Twin Cities Regional Center (TCRC) by Asian Media Access and Project Sweetie Pie hopes to attract private foreign capital to the city’s North Side that would create a global cultural and technology district to create jobs. The TCRC proposal was introduced October 29 to a mostly Asian audience last week at the Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Community Summit at the University of Minnesota Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center (UROC). It includes the federal employment-based (EB-5) investment program by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, which allows foreigners to come to the U.S. and invest at least $500,000 to a Targeted Employment Area (TEA). North Minneapolis has been designated as a TEA, declared Asian Media Access Founder-Executive Director Ange (pronounced An-gee) Hwang, who pointed out last week that 35 foreign investors would be needed to raise $16.8 million dollars

in TCRC’s first phase. Continue Reading →

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Mayoral Candidate Bob Fine: 16-year Minneapolis Park Board commissioner

By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer

 

“I’ve grown up in Minneapolis my entire life,” says mayoral candidate Bob Fine, who pledges to reduce property taxes by five percent. “I’ve always been a big promoter [of North Minneapolis, where he grew up]. My intention is that [West Broadway] be a major focus of economic development because if you are going to bring jobs, you have to change what Broadway is today. You are not going to change the climate in North Minneapolis without providing a better environment and a place where there’s businesses and jobs.”

The Southwest LRT and Bottineau LRT both “are hitting through North Minneapolis, which is on the edge of downtown,” explains Fine. “Light rail is important hopefully for economic development for the city. Continue Reading →

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Twin Cities Black Film Festival 2013 local filmmakers

 

(Part one in a series of articles about the Twin Cities Black Film Festival)

By Charles Hallman

Staff writer

 

Local filmmakers were featured at this year’s Twin Cities Black Film Festival (TCBFF).  The MSR was in attendance at the four-day event held September 26-29 at St. Louis Park’s Showplace Icon Theaters. “We had 11 [local] filmmakers, and his was the only one that sold out,” proclaimed TCBFF Founder-Director Natalie Morrow on Ménages, a two-hour film directed by Edith Rene Tchuichoui.  It was part of her “Celebration of Minnesota Filmmakers.”   The movie’s main characters are Samantha, a U.S. citizen and Joseph, a Cameroon immigrant are brought together who are forced to make choices based on emotions or interests. “I started working on this movie in ’09,” said the filmmaker, who added that it was originally filmed as a short, but later lengthened it after audience reactions that saw it were positive. Continue Reading →

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