Monthly Archive: January 2010

Metro

B-PEP, CAPA youths rally for Jordan Miles

Joined by about 60 CAPA students outside Pittsburgh council chambers, Black Political Empowerment Project Director Tim Stevens called on Police Chief Nate Harper to reassign officers Richard Ewing, David Sisak and Michael Saldutte to desk duty. These officers beat CAPA senior Jordan Miles during a Jan. 12 arrest outside his home. MARCHING FOR MILES —CAPA students march into the City-County Building to deliver letters to Pittsburgh Council and Police Chief Nate Harper calling for charges to be dropped against Jordan Miles and punishment for the officers who beat him during a Jan. 12 arrest. Carrying signs and chanting, the students marched from their school on a windy 26-degree day to demand justice for their schoolmate. Stevens thanked them for, what for most, was their first foray into civil activism.

Metro

Summit challenges police brutality

This year will mark the 15th anniversary of the death of Jonny Gammage, a man killed while in police custody Oct. 12 1995. Each year the Black and White Reunion, created in response to Gammage’s death, holds the Summit Against Racism to confront the status of race relations in Pittsburgh and work to improve them. JORDAN MILES “Today we hope to have a fruitful conversation of where do we go from here with regard to race relations in the Pittsburgh region and how can we more effectively implement changes many of us seek,” said BWR founder Tim Stevens.

Metro

Union job inclusion still a challenge

It’s been almost 10 years since the outrage over sham minority and women-owned business contracts made the lack of Black participation on PNC Park, Heinz Field and David L. Lawrence Convention Center projects look even worse. And while Black contractors such as architect Howard Graves and Larry Brinker have made minority business participation figures for the Consol Energy Arena look pretty good at around 23 percent overall, actual worksite participation is about 6 percent. On other union jobs around the city, it’s lower still.

Metro

Universities reveal top job placements

College students pay thousands of dollars for their education. Many find that they are equipped with all this knowledge in a particular field, and have no place to apply it. With the economy the way it is, it is almost twice as hard to find a job in most fields. But it helps if one goes into a field that is booming, and now several local universities have revealed some of the top fields that they have the most success in placing individuals in and around Pittsburgh. ALL NUMBERS—Professor Elise A. Boyas, of the University of Pittsburgh’s Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business & College of Business Administration, explains an equation during her afternoon accounting class. “Nationally and in Pittsburgh, the top three fields in high demand are accounting, information technology and engineering,” Carol Greco, director of Point Park University’s Career Development said. “Then Education and Health care.”

Metro

City council on round two for prevailing wage

The nine members of Pittsburgh City Council have signed on as co-sponsors of prevailing wage legislation that will require employers to pay certain service industry workers a wage on par with others in the industry. Although the bill won’t be voted on until Feb. 2, many giving testimony at the public hearing for the bill on Jan. 25 felt like Groundhog Day had come a week early. SOCIAL JUSTICE— From left: Karen Battle and Rev. Ricky Burgess celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day by protesting for the prevailing wage bill. “Looking at the street, there’s a lot of trouble I could get myself into,” said Jazzbert Fridai. “But having a job with a good wage and benefits could prevent that.”

Metro

Preston looks ahead in 2010

With a new legislative session ahead and a new budget bolstered by revenue from casino table games, Joe Preston Jr. is focused on community development, education, utility and tax reform. When asked about the disparity in quality of life issues and development between the booming East Liberty and district communities like Homewood or Wilkinsburg, Preston said he is encouraged that development can come to other parts of his district. JOE PRESTON JR. “You have to remember we started working on East Liberty 15 years ago,” he said. “Wilkinsburg has completed a comprehensive development plan that is awaiting approval. The CDC there is building new homes and the weed and seed committee has some good people on it.

Metro

County prevailing wage law introduced

Allegheny County District 10 Councilman Bill Robinson has introduced legislation that would require contractors and their subcontractors, that receive county subsidies of $100,000 or more to pay employees a prevailing wage. That wage would be either the wage paid to the majority of employees in the job classification at similar locations in Allegheny County, or the wages determined by the (state) Secretary of Labor for the job classification, which ever is higher.

Metro

Speak Out: What do you think happened to the Steelers this year?

After winning the Super Bowl in 2009 the Steelers didn’t make the playoffs this season. We asked Pittsburghers what they thought. Here’s what they said: “Not being prepared for Troy getting hurt, not having confidence in the corners, not having confidence in players knowing what they were suppose to do. I definitely think they’ll be able to bounce back. I think prepare themselves for the next season.” Dion Dupree, Antoine Jordan and Tiffany Jimenez Dion Dupree North Side Juvenile probation officer

Metro

Spirit of King adds two more heroes to list

For more than 20 years the Kingsley Association has hosted the Spirit of King Awards ceremony to honor those who have advanced the cause for equality in Pittsburgh. Together with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Port Authority, they celebrate local heroes who followed in the footsteps of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. FOGGIE FAMILY—From left: Lark Foggie Fountain, Dylan Charles Aragon, Charlene Foggie-Barnett, and E. Michael Barnett, M.D. accept the award for Charles Foggie. This year’s Spirit of King Awards recognized Bishop Charles Foggie and Jake Milliones, Ph.D., two men who are fondly remembered as the Black mayors of Pittsburgh. Both were honored at a ceremony Jan. 14 and had their names added to the Spirit of King Awards Plaque at the Martin Luther King Jr. East Busway.