Daily Archive: June 20, 2012


NAACP calls for probe of police shooting

The Pittsburgh branch of the NAACP is calling for the Allegheny County executive and City of Pittsburgh mayor to conduct an independent investigation into the shooting death of an East Liberty teen by an Allegheny County Sheriff’s Deputy June 13. “We would have liked to see a different outcome, that this young fellow would still be alive and that he could have gotten some help,” said Constance Parker, 1st vice president of the NAACP. ODELL BROWN “We respect the job of the police officers, but we’d like to see the outcome better. There are a lot of questions from the community. We want justice for all colors, fair treatment across the board.”



Ex-offenders bill struggles in council

On April 12, 2011, District 9 Councilman Rev. Ricky Burgess proposed legislation calling for the elimination of inquires about criminal history from job applications in city government hiring. In the months since, the “Ban the Box” initiative, being led at the community level by Dean Williams, founder of the Formerly Convicted Citizens Project, has been unable to gain traction in City Council. REV. RICKY BURGESS “I have been working with community groups to draft legislation that would expand Ban the Box,” said Burgess. “We have actually composed several drafts. I have forwarded them to the law department and I am waiting for their review.” The originally drafted legislation was only aimed at hiring practices for city government and contractors who work with the city. Now FCCP has been working to expand the legislation to include private Pittsburgh vendors and employers.


‘Men of Impact’ examines role of fathers

According to a report released by the White House on June 15, low-income men from communities of color are significantly more likely to be nonresident fathers. The report on “Promoting Responsible Fatherhood,” also indicated that more than half of African-American children grow up in homes without their fathers present. Mirroring the Obama administration’s commitment to encourage fathers to take responsibility for their children’s intellectual, emotional and financial well-being, Brown Chapel AME Church held a series of events dedicated to African-American men during Father’s Day weekend. DARREN McCORMICK “Some people think that just because you’re capable of having a child, you all of a sudden know how to do this,” said Darren McCormick, one of the weekend’s speakers and associate director of admissions at Grove City College. “Do your research. Ask questions.”


New police face at-risk Black youth at symposium

On June 7, the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police graduated its most recent recruiting class. Among the class of 25, there was not one African-American graduate. CHIEF NATE HARPER With a police force that is becoming increasingly less diverse, due to the lack of African-Americans in recent recruiting classes, many worry today’s officers are not equipped to effectively deal with the African-American community. In an effort to address this lack of diversity and the resulting diminished cultural understanding, the Pittsburgh Police recently hosted a discussion between some of the city’s at-risk African-American youth and law enforcement officials.


Beaver Falls police chief emphasizes values

by Josh Brown Beaver Falls Police Chief Charles Jones says the challenge of balancing the responsibilities of being Chief of Police and a Christian lay minister, “once people recognize that you’re a Christian, let alone a lay minister, they want to challenge your authority and position. As the saying goes, they take your kindness as a weakness at some point. CHIEF CHARLES JONES “God has worked it out for me that what comes as a challenge for some is natural to me.” He is often expected to show more than an accepted level of leniency to offenders. Jones said, “God has blessed me to just be who I am and who He has called me to be.”


Community Calendar

Day of Black Male Solidarity JUNE 23—The Brother to Brother Leadership Forum will host its Day of Black Male Solidarity from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Arts, Culture & Training Institute, 7120 Kelly St., Homewood. The theme is “Unification of Purpose for Direct Action.” The special guest speaker will be Wade Nobles. There will be workshops on criminal justice, economic justice and general topics, such as raising boys to men, underperforming schools and more. There will also be basketball, music, entertainment and food. For more information, call 412-371-3689 ext. 32 or visit http://www.ceapittsburgh.org.


Diaspora: The links that bind Caribbean immigrants

by Tony BestFor New Pittsburgh Courier It has become something of a rite of passage for Caribbean political leaders who direct the fortunes of the nations and territories that form the archipelago. In recent weeks and months, Jamaica’s Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller, Guyana’s new President Donald Ramotar, Grenada’s head of government Tillman Thomas and Mia Mottley, a former Deputy Prime Minister of Barbados, came to New York at the helm of a six member delegation of the Barbados Labor Party to meet the Diaspora. What they all did was deliver an interesting message: nationals of their respective countries must continue to play an invaluable role in the further economic and social development of America’s third border. MIA MOTTLEY



This Week In Black History

For the week of June 20-26June 20 1967—Boxing champion Muhammad Ali is convicted in a Houston, Texas, federal court of violating the Selective Service Act by refusing to be inducted into the armed services. He was fined $10,000 and given five years in prison. The United States Supreme Court would later overturn the conviction. Ali’s refusal to be inducted was based, in part, on his opposition to America’s war in Vietnam. He often said, “No Vietnamese ever called me Nigger.” MUHAMMAD ALI


Roberts has blood, bone marrow disorder

by David BauderAP Television Writer NEW YORK (AP)—Five years after being treated for breast cancer, “Good Morning America” co-host Robin Roberts has a new health fight on her hands. Roberts said Monday she is beginning chemotherapy treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome, or MDS, a blood and bone marrow disease once known as preleukemia. She is expected to get a bone marrow transplant sometime this fall. NEW HEALTH FIGHT—Robin Roberts is shown on “Good Morning America” June 11, after announcing she has been diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndrome, a blood and bone marrow disease once known as preleukemia. (AP Photo/ABC, Ida Mae Astute)


Calls show Zimmerman instructing wife on transfers

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Jailhouse calls show how the former neighborhood watch leader charged with killing Trayvon Martin instructed his wife to transfer money from bank accounts. The calls released by prosecutors Monday could play a crucial role in George Zimmerman’s second bond hearing next week. SHELLIE ZIMMERMAN