Home » Entries posted by Curtis Black

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Violence prevention programs cut, struggling to keep afloat amid state budget crisis

A recent spike in gun violence – including two shootings with multiple victims in Back of the Yards last month – has brought new attention to violence prevention programs that have been shut down in the ongoing state budget crisis. These include one of the few programs that help young children who are victims of […]

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Residents denied entry to Southwest Side charter school proposal hearing

After over 100 neighborhood residents were locked out of a community hearing on proposals for new charter schools on Monday, members of CPS’s Neighborhood Advisory Council announced that a second hearing would be held on Tuesday, Aug. 18 at 6 p.m. at Kelly High School. Following a press conference prior to the beginning of the […]


Childcare cuts threaten local centers

Updated 8/5/15  4:30 p.m. [On Wednesday, Aug. 5, the State Senate passed a bill barring the Department of Human Services from using emergency rulemaking to raise eligibility standards for the childcare assistance program, but sources say the measure would not be retroactive.  The House is not expected to take up the bill until after the […]


Riot Fest moves to Douglas Park, residents call for public meeting

Residents of Little Village and North Lawndale are calling on the Chicago Park District to hold a public hearing before issuing a permit to move Riot Fest to Douglas Park. The punk rock festival is scheduled for September 11 to 13 at Douglas Park, although the park district has yet to approve a permit. For […]

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Yañez, Lopez face off during 15th Ward runoff debate

Two candidates in the runoff election for 15th Ward alderman clashed over red light cameras, participatory budgeting and the mayoral election in a candidates’ forum held Saturday, April 4 at Davis Square Park. The Gate News organized the forum in partnership with St. Joseph Parish, Brighton Park Neighborhood Council, Englewood Votes and The Resurrection Project. […]

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CPS rolls out new test amid parents’ concerns

As Chicago Public Schools roll out a new standardized test this month, parent groups are seeking clarification of opt-out policies. Meanwhile on a recent visit to the South Side, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan added to confusion over threats of funding sanctions if the test isn’t given. CPS began administering the exam, known as […]

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Mayoral hopefuls discuss Latino issues

Five mayoral candidates addressed Latino community concerns at the Illinois Latino Agenda’s candidates forum on Friday, February 13 at Instituto Cervantes. The forum and a candidates’ questionnaire serve both to inform voters and to promote accountability, said Martin Torres of the Latino Policy Forum, one of the conveners of the Latino Agenda. The candidates “made real […]

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Grassroots Illinois Action endorses 23 aldermanic candidates, including six on the Southwest Side

Grassroots Illinois Action, a political action group backed by community and labor activists, endorsed Jesus “Chuy” Garcia for mayor and 23 aldermanic candidates, including six on the Southwest Side. “This is an incredibly important election,” said GIA executive director Amisha Patel. “After years of having resources stripped away from our neighborhoods, we have a chance […]

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Aldermanic candidates in the 15th Ward compete for open seat

There are six candidates officially on the ballot for 15th Ward alderman. The office of 15th Ward alderman is an open seat, because the 2012 ward remap moved the current Ald. Toni Foulkes into the 16th Ward. The new 15th ward was drawn to satisfy demands for an additional Latino-majority ward to reflect population growth, […]

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Obama moves on immigration reform despite Republicans’ disapproval

President Obama announced executive action Thursday that will protect up to 5 million immigrants from deportation. Immigrant rights groups praised the action, while regretting it did not go further. They credited grassroots efforts which kept the issue alive through years when Congress refused to act and the administration ramped up deportations, and called for continued […]