Tag Archives: equity

In Pete’s Words: increasing HBCU funding

by Pete Buttigieg – Nov 13, 2019 (BaltimoreSun.com)

Left without remedy, an injustice does not heal. It compounds. This is the fundamental principle behind a 2006 lawsuit filed by a coalition concerned for the state’s four historically black colleges and universities: Morgan State University, Coppin State University, Bowie State University and the University of Maryland, Eastern Shore. It alleges that the state funded largely white institutions at the expense of the HBCUs.

These HBCUs recently proposed to settle this lawsuit with a $577 million investment in their schools — a figure less than Mississippi paid in a similar case. Yet, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan offered only $200 million and has refused to negotiate further. In response, HBCU faculty, alumni, students and supporters rallied in protest are rallying in protest in Annapolis today.

I applaud the students and advocates who are using their voice to highlight this gross injustice. But it shouldn’t only be up to them to take up that fight. As a presidential candidate and the son of educators, I believe it’s long past time that we give Historically Black Colleges and Universities the funding they deserve and ensure these institutions continue to provide students of color with greater opportunities.Maryland Speaker Adrienne A. Jones urges Gov. Larry Hogan to settle HBCU lawsuit »

HBCUs were founded as a response to discrimination and continue to serve students and communities as engines of empowerment. From Maryland to South Carolina, from Florida to Oklahoma, these schools have produced 80% of the country’s black judges and educated 25% of African-Americans holding STEM degrees. Toni Braxton, the Grammy-winning R&B singer, attended Bowie State. One of my key advisors is a Morgan State University graduate. And one of my competitors for the presidential nomination, Senator Kamala Harris, is a proud Howard University Bison.

Lawsuits like the one in Maryland remind all of us how an uneven playing field yields underfunded colleges, declining federal funding and endowments that lag behind those of predominantly white institutions. As president, I will increase funding for HBCUs and other minority-serving institutions by $50 billion. These resources will allow the consortium of black colleges and universities to make long term investments in faculty, facilities and student retention rates.

At the same time, we’ll ensure more young people have access to college, including public HBCUs, by providing free tuition to low- and middle-class students and making basic living expenses free for the lowest-income students. Students receiving Pell Grants will be able to afford basic living expenses such as housing and transportation, enabling low-income students to graduate debt free. We will cancel student debt for borrowers in low-quality, predatory for-profit programs, and expand and improve loan repayment options for students who participate in national service or pursue public service careers.Gov. Hogan: $200 million is ‘final offer’ to resolve HBCU lawsuit »

These investments in educational equity are part of my broader vision to tear down systemic racism. It’s a plan that recognizes that everything is connected, that every time we sit down to talk about race and policing, by the end of the hour we’re also talking about economic empowerment. But we can’t talk about economic empowerment without talking about education. And we can’t talk about education without addressing the way neighborhoods are drawn and the way that impacts homeownership and health and even whose voice is excluded at the ballot box.

My vision is to tackle all these challenges in a systemic way. We will cut mass incarceration in half, with no increase in crime, through steps like legalizing marijuana and eliminating incarceration for drug possession. We’ll create a $10-billion federal fund, modeled on Maryland’s successful TEDCO fund, to co-invest in entrepreneurs of color, and defer and forgive college loans for Pell-eligible students who start and maintain businesses. We’ll deliver a 21st Century Homestead Act so that people living in historically redlined communities can buy properties and build wealth instead of being forced out by gentrification. We’ll designate Health Equity Zones to help communities develop effective local strategies, and recruit more black doctors, nurses and health professionals. And we’ll pass a 21st Century Voting Rights Act to make it easier — not harder — to vote.

It is not enough simply to replace a racist policy with a neutral one and assume inequity will take care of itself. Experience has shown that it doesn’t work that way. The policies that created today’s inequality were put in place intentionally, and we need intentional, anti-racist action to reverse these harms.

Sixty-five years ago, the Supreme Court declared that “separate educational facilities are inherently unequal.” It was Thurgood Marshall, a son of Maryland and an HBCU graduate twice over, who advocated so eloquently for that outcome. In 2020, let us recommit ourselves to the hard work of equality — in education and across every facet of our society.


by Pete Buttigieg – Nov 16, 2019 (The-Review.com)

Left without remedy, an injustice does not heal. It compounds.

This is the fundamental principle behind a 2006 lawsuit filed by a coalition concerned for Maryland’s four historically black colleges and universities: Morgan State University, Coppin State University, Bowie State University and the University of Maryland, Eastern Shore. It alleges the state funded largely white institutions at the expense of the HBCUs.

These HBCUs recently proposed to settle this lawsuit with a $577 million investment in their schools — a figure less than Mississippi paid in a similar case. Yet, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan offered only $200 million and has refused to negotiate further. In response, HBCU faculty, alumni, students and supporters rallied in protest Wednesday.

I applaud the students and advocates who are using their voice to highlight this gross injustice. But it shouldn’t only be up to them to take up that fight. As a presidential candidate and the son of educators, I believe it’s long past time that we give historically black colleges and universities the funding they deserve and ensure these institutions continue to provide students of color with greater opportunities.

HBCUs were founded as a response to discrimination and continue to serve students and communities as engines of empowerment. From Maryland to South Carolina, from Florida to Oklahoma, these schools have produced 80% of the country’s black judges and educated 25% of African Americans holding STEM degrees. Toni Braxton, the Grammy-winning R&B singer, attended Bowie State. One of my key advisors is a Morgan State University graduate. And one of my competitors for the presidential nomination, Sen. Kamala Harris, is a proud Howard University Bison.

Lawsuits like the one in Maryland remind all of us how an uneven playing field yields underfunded colleges, declining federal funding and endowments that lag behind those of predominantly white institutions. As president, I would increase funding for HBCUs and other minority-serving institutions by $50 billion. These resources would allow the consortium of black colleges and universities to make long-term investments in faculty, facilities and student retention rates.

At the same time, we would ensure more young people have access to college, including public HBCUs, by providing free tuition to low- and middle-class students and making basic living expenses free for the lowest-income students. Students receiving Pell Grants would be able to afford basic living expenses, such as housing and transportation, enabling low-income students to graduate debt-free. We would cancel student debt for borrowers in low-quality, predatory for-profit programs, and expand and improve loan repayment options for students who participate in national service or pursue public service careers.

These investments in educational equity are part of my broader vision to tear down systemic racism. It’s a plan that recognizes that everything is connected, that every time we sit down to talk about race and policing, by the end of the hour we’re also talking about economic empowerment. But we can’t talk about economic empowerment without talking about education. And we can’t talk about education without addressing the way neighborhoods are drawn and the way that impacts homeownership and health and even whose voice is excluded at the ballot box.

My vision is to tackle all these challenges in a systemic way. We will cut mass incarceration in half, with no increase in crime, through steps like legalizing marijuana and eliminating incarceration for drug possession. We’ll create a $10 billion federal fund, modeled on Maryland’s successful TEDCO fund, to co-invest in entrepreneurs of color and to defer and forgive college loans for Pell-eligible students who start and maintain businesses. We’ll deliver a 21st century Homestead Act so that people living in historically redlined communities can buy properties and build wealth instead of being forced out by gentrification. We’ll designate Health Equity Zones to help communities develop effective local strategies, and recruit more black doctors, nurses and health professionals. And we’ll pass a 21st century Voting Rights Act to make it easier — not harder — to vote.

It is not enough simply to replace a racist policy with a neutral one and assume inequity will take care of itself. Experience has shown that it doesn’t work that way. The policies that created today’s inequality were put in place intentionally, and we need intentional, anti-racist action to reverse these harms.

Sixty-five years ago, the Supreme Court declared that “separate educational facilities are inherently unequal.” It was Thurgood Marshall, a son of Maryland and an HBCU graduate twice over, who advocated so eloquently for that outcome. In 2020, let us recommit ourselves to the hard work of equality — in education and across every facet of our society.

Why Pete Buttigieg: Empowering Black Americans

The Douglass Plan

Visit PeteForAmerica.com to read the Douglass Plan or read the white paper here.


Chike Aguh, policy advisor

Portia Allen Kyle, policy advisor


Angela Angel, Black Engagement Director

Arielle M. Brandy, Indiana State Director

Tiffany James, South Carolina Deputy Director


An Ally to the People

Beyond the Douglass Plan, Pete Buttigieg has time and again proven himself a compassionate and trusted ally to the Black community.

Jarvis Houston, South Carolina Director

Watch the full video here.

Aesha

Aesha gave permission to her friend Kenny to edit her videos.


In Pete’s Words: Criminal Justice Reform

A Buttigieg presidency will take bold action on criminal justice reform

by Pete Buttigieg – Oct 26, 2019 (TheState.com)

Our next president will step into the Oval Office the day after the sun sets on Donald Trump’s presidency. That president must offer a vision bold enough to tackle our pressing challenges but also unifying enough to heal a country that will be more divided and vulnerable than it is now.

One area where we must urgently address this pain is our criminal justice system.

For too long America’s criminal justice system has suffered from a legacy of racism. Every day we see a system that inflicts, reflects and compounds injustice and inequality in black and brown communities. South Carolinians know this too well: despite making up 28 percent of the overall population, black South Carolinians account for 62 percent of the incarcerated population. And black South Carolinians with no criminal histories are given longer sentences than white people.

South Carolina also allows criminal history questions on employment applications, locking people out of employment opportunities.

The policies that led to this inequity were put in place intentionally, and we must be equally intentional about dismantling them.

So building on my Douglass Plan for Black America, my administration will deliver ambitious reforms to our criminal justice system.

First, we must work to reduce the number of incarcerated people in America by 50 percent. We will achieve this by taking steps that will include ending incarceration for all drug possession offenses and eliminating mandatory minimums.

And with over 43,000 young people behind bars on any given day, we will provide $100 million in grants to states to close youth prisons and repurpose them to serve the needs of children.

At the state level, we will double federal funding dedicated to decarceration efforts to ensure people are not serving unnecessarily long sentences — and we will incentivize states to process evidence backlogs to prevent people from languishing in jail while waiting for results.

We will also ensure better conditions for those who are incarcerated — preventing the next Lee Correctional Institution riot — and provide greater opportunities when they are released.

As the president of the United States, I will end the use of prolonged solitary confinement, reduce sexual assault in prisons and prioritize suicide reduction.

We will promote policies that reflect basic human decency, such as providing free phone calls for people to remain connected to loved ones and free women’s hygiene products to incarcerated women. And we will ensure that people have a real shot at a second chance by restoring Pell Grant access to the incarcerated and promoting fair chance hiring by banning the box.

Why? Because incarceration should be about redemption as much as detention.

Finally, we will improve police training and accountability. I will increase transparency in law enforcement by providing resources to states to standardize data reporting and adopt early warning systems to flag troubling behavior by officers.

We will raise the legal standard under which officers are justified in using lethal force, and we will promote legislation to end qualified immunity to allow police to be held accountable for unlawful actions.

And when incidents do occur, they will be evaluated by a national review board — similar to how the National Transportation Safety Board assesses an aviation or highway crash — to learn how we can improve.

Scripture says, “Blessed is he … who secures justice for the oppressed.” With bold action, we can finally bring our criminal justice system in line with our deepest values.


Criminal justice reform can’t only enact neutral policies. It must reverse years of racist ones

“Justice for all” has to really mean for all. My plan to transform our system will help heal the injustices built into the process and the institutions.

by Pete Buttigieg – Oct 26, 2019 (NBCNews.com)

Whether it’s in a courtroom that doesn’t provide adequate defense or a classroom where minor infractions yield major punishments, Black people are still marked by a criminal justice system that was built against them.

In 2006, for instance, Cyntoia Brown was sentenced to 51 years to life in prison after fighting off a man she believed would kill her. It didn’t matter that she had been sex trafficked; it didn’t matter that she was only 16. The decision to treat girls like Cyntoia as hardened criminals beyond redemption was made a long time ago — and it pervades our society.

The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world, and Black communities have shouldered the burden. While the youth incarceration rate has dropped, the gap between Black and white youth incarceration has widened. Despite equal rates of use, Black people are nearly four times more likely to be arrested for marijuana than white people. And legal fees disproportionately target Black communities, often resulting in arrest only for failure to pay.

The sources of these disparities are not incidental, but intentional. They are a product of decades of racist policies, most within living memory. Thus, replacing those policies with neutral ones just isn’t going to cut it. Injustice does not heal, it compounds.

That is why I’m proposing a bold approach to reverse these wrongs in our criminal legal system and ensure justice that truly is for all.

Our plan cuts our incarcerated population by 50 percent, because we know that incarceration often does even more harm than what it was meant to punish. We will work to achieve this by this by eliminating incarceration for drug possession, ending mandatory minimums and legalizing marijuana. Because profit should never be the motivation for justice, we’ll take steps to abolish private prisons, and shut down the for-profit bail industry to stop the predatory extraction of wealth from Black communities. And for those who currently serve punitively long sentences, we will establish an independent clemency commission, outside of the Department of Justice, to recommend broad categories of people to be released.

This election, we have the chance to transform our criminal justice system into something that works for all Americans

My administration will also pay particular attention to the over 40,000 children incarcerated in the United States, because children should be treated as children. That starts with investing in a new $100 million federal competitive grant for states and localities to close down youth prisons and expand programming that actually meets the needs of children. We will push to raise the age at which one can be tried as an adult, remove children from adult jails and prisons and enforce the Supreme Court’s ban on juvenile life sentences without parole.

We know all too well that the criminalization of Black children often starts in schools, where Black students are more harshly disciplined and increased police presence can filter students into the school to prison pipeline. My administration will respond by directing the Department of Education to issue guidance on alternative disciplinary practices and encouraging legislation that eliminates suspensions for bias-prone infractions like “disrespect” or “violating the dress code.” The bias embedded in discretionary school discipline is why I support California’s recently-passed CROWN Act, which bans hair discrimination, and makes sure that kids like Michael Trimble can go to school.

Black parents should never have to worry if their children are safe in the presence of those sworn to protect them. And yet, when serious systemic law enforcement issues have cost the lives of Atatiana Jefferson, Botham Jean and countless others, it’s understandable why so many Black people view police more as an occupying force than a protective one.

Good intentions are not enough. We need meaningful change and a new approach.

Our plan to reimagine policing starts with promoting practices and policies that raise the legal standard under which officers can use lethal force and abolishing qualified immunity, which often prohibits officers from being held accountable in court. We will promote bias-free policing by creating a four-year national police academy. Finally, we will ensure police accountability by creating a national review board to independently assess officer misconduct and reinvigorating the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division with the purpose of investigating the complaints thoroughly and promoting accountability.

This election, we have the chance to transform our criminal justice system into something that works for all Americans. This is not just an opportunity — it is an obligation. These injustices have a long history within our government, often devised by those in the highest offices. In many respects, what happened to Cyntoia Brown is still happening all across the country. Good intentions are not enough. We need meaningful change and a new approach. And that’s exactly what I’m prepared to bring as president.

Pete Buttigieg Believed in My Power, And Now He Wants to Build Power For Every Woman

Women’s freedom can’t depend on Washington — it can only come from systematically building women’s power in our economy, our political system and in every part of our society.

by Kareemah Fowler – Oct 24 2019 (Blavity.com)

My career took a nontraditional path: I left college early to become a real estate mogul. By the time I was 19, I owned 19 properties, and later a small business. When I was in real estate, I spent a lot of time in the assessor’s office. I saw so many things about our city government that weren’t working well, and I knew I could make South Bend work better. It was that desire to improve our city that eventually led me to become the first minority to be elected to a full-time executive office in St. Joseph County.

One of my biggest advocates as I thought about running for office — a leader who inspired me in my journey to public service — was Mayor Pete Buttigieg. I remember sitting down with him when I first talked to him about running. He encouraged me from the start and supported me all throughout my run.

As Mayor of South Bend, Pete has repeatedly shown his understanding of the challenges women face, as well as his ability to get things done. Knowing that many of us struggle to balance career and family, he implemented a new family leave policy for city employees that gave new moms and dads up to six weeks of leave at full salary. He created a city fund that distributes grants to childcare providers — expanding access for more families. And at a moment when women’s ability to control their own health care decisions are under attack, he prevented a crisis pregnancy center from opening next to an abortion clinic, appreciating how much harder that would make it for women making difficult personal decisions. 

Pete has always recognized the ways that persistent bias has denied women economic, political and social equality. Now, he is building on his strong work in South Bend to put forward a women’s agenda for the 21st century that will ensure women finally secure lasting power.

First, Pete’s plan will close the pay and wealth gap. At a time when Black women make just 62 cents for every dollar a white man makes, Pete will ensure equal pay for equal work. A Buttigieg administration will invest $10 billion to end workplace harassment and discrimination against women, and hold companies accountable when they discriminate. Like he did in South Bend, Pete will invest in paid family and medical leave, affordable child care, and paid sick leave — crucial supports that are proven to narrow the wage gap. And Pete will dedicate $50 billion to grow women-owned businesses and lift up entrepreneurs like me.

Pete’s women’s agenda will also advance women’s health and choice. Through his plan for Medicare For All Who Want it, he will ensure that every woman has access to affordable healthcare.

He’ll write abortion rights into law, so that reproductive rights aren’t at the mercy of a handful of judges. He’ll also prioritize ending the maternal mortality crisis that leaves Black women dying from pregnancy at rates three times higher than white women.

And Pete’s commitment to women’s safety extends far beyond health. That’s why his administration will help build safe, inclusive communities for women and families on campus, online and in their own homes. He’ll reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act and close the loophole that lets boyfriends convicted of domestic violence buy guns. Importantly, his administration will work to change a culture of gender-based violence, particularly against trans women and women of color.

Finally, just like Pete supported me in elected office, Pete will ensure women have an equal shot at leadership. He’ll implement campaign finance reforms to make it easier for women running for office to raise money. Because representation matters, Pete has committed to nominating at least 50 percent women to his Cabinet and in his judicial appointments, and he will challenge state and local governments to do the same. He’ll also push the private sector to be more transparent and proactive in supporting and promoting women leaders — and won’t be afraid to hold them accountable for pay and promotion discrimination.

Women’s freedom can’t depend on Washington — it can only come from systematically building women’s power in our economy, our political system and in every part of our society. And Pete’s women’s agenda does just that. Pete empowered me to reach my full potential, and as president he will ensure millions of others can do the same.

Why Pete Buttigieg: Elevating Women


Myung

Arabia

Pavani

Nina

Lis

Sonal

Terri

Arielle

Viviana

Dara

Libby

Jess


See also: Building Power: A Review of Pete’s Women Agenda