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Chicago’s Unique Bike Giveaway Program Is A Win

When the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) launched its Bike Chicago program in the summer of 2022, the city began working on its goal to promote active transportation and target “mobility hardship” by injecting working-class communities with free access to cycling. Now, a report on the first two years of the country’s biggest free bike distribution program says it’s proven an “effective, cost-efficient model for getting bicycles into users’ hands for transportation” in disinvested neighborhoods. “First and foremost, it’s an incredible program,” says Pete Lauer, program manager at the nonprofit Shared-Use Mobility Center (SUMC), which promotes equitable and ecological alternatives to car-centric transport.

Under-Resourced Neighborhoods Can Be Incubators For Future Entrepreneurs

In 2016, I walked into a school’s career day on the west side of Chicago and met a great young man. This honor roll student played basketball and was respected by his peers. But despite these wonderful qualities, he sold drugs to pay for the things he desired. He was one of thousands of young Black men in Chicago who have the ambition, intelligence and leadership acumen to become successful, legitimate entrepreneurs but have no idea how to find that path, let alone follow it. There are tens of thousands more like him in cities across the country. Some put their entrepreneurial drive and leadership skills to destructive, and illegal, use.

Healthcare Workers Will Protest The American Medical Association

On June 8, healthcare workers will demonstrate outside of a meeting of the American Medical Association House of Delegates in Chicago. These health employees, representing diverse sectors in healthcare, are protesting the AMA’s refusal to address the ongoing genocide in Gaza, despite taking action regarding other conflicts in the past, such as the war in Ukraine. The protest is being organized by a range of pro-Palestine healthcare workers’ organizations, including Healthcare Workers for Palestine and Doctors Against Genocide. Peoples Dispatch spoke to Emily Hacker, a member of Healthcare Workers for Palestine, who said that the goal of protesters was to pressure the AMA to call for a ceasefire.

Possible Virtual Biden Nomination Won’t Impact March On DNC

Chicago, IL – Preparations for the March on the DNC are well underway, with tens of thousands of people slated to march within sight and sound of the United Center on August 19 to demand that the Democratic Party helmed by Joe Biden end the genocide on Gaza and end U.S. aid to Israel. Recently, the Democratic Party announced, to comply with shifting Ohio laws, that it will virtually nominate Biden before the convention, meaning that some business of the convention might be resolved before the August in-person convention. “The Israeli occupation with U.S. weapons has killed over 36,000 people in Gaza. Meanwhile, the leaders of the Democratic Party are sad because their convention won’t be the sensation needed for the uninspiring candidates,” said Hatem Abudayyeh, national chair of the United States Palestinian Community Network (USPCN).

Four Consecutive Protests Confront Buildup To DNC In Chicago

Chicago, IL – “This is only a pinch of what we're going to do in August,” Merawi Gerima said to 150 people who rallied outside the 18th District police station on the Near Northside of Chicago, May 19. Gerima is one of the co-chairs of the Campaign to Free Incarcerated Survivors of Torture (CFIST), a campaign of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression (CAARPR). The main target of CFIST is the governor of Illinois, JB Pritzker, who has the power to grant clemency to every one of the hundreds of people who are still incarcerated despite their convictions being the proven result of torture by police.

Won’t You Please Come To Chicago?

Students are protesting Biden and Netanyahu’s war on Gaza all over the City of Chicago while city, state, and Democratic Party officials worry about what it portends for the Democratic National Convention (DNC) scheduled for August 19 to August 23.  Comparisons to Chicago 1968 are common, and the city’s police will be supported by Secret Service, FBI, Homeland Security, and neighboring police departments. Chicago Police Superintendent Larry Snelling is frequently interviewed about preparations, and he says, “We’re the Chicago Police. We’re ready.” Politico warned that Mayor Brandon Johnson “unabashedly sympathizes with the protesters,” while the World Socialist Website accused him of deploying SWAT teams against peaceful, anti-genocide protestors at the  Chicago Art Institute.

Data On Economic Insecurity Among Amazon Warehouse Workers

Today, the Center for Urban Economic Development (CUED) at the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC) released a new report detailing the results of a survey of 1,484 Amazon workers across 451 facilities in 42 states—the largest nationwide study of Amazon workers to date. The report shows that roughly half of Amazon’s frontline warehouse workers are struggling with food and housing insecurity and being able to pay their bills, with one-third relying on different kinds of public assistance programs. “This research indicates just how far the goalposts have shifted. It used to be the case that big, leading firms in the economy provided a path to the middle class and relative economic security,” said Dr. Sanjay Pinto.

The People’s Art Institute Denounces Police Attack On Student Encampment

The People’s Art Institute, constituted by SAIC students, announced our encampment situated in the AIC’s North Garden, on Saturday morning, May 4, at 11:30 A.M. The goals of the encampment were clear: to stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people and to demand SAIC and AIC divest from entities profiting off of the occupation and genocide in Palestine. Students began setting up and by 12:05 P.M., CPD was onsite and an arrest warning was issued. CPD started kettling protestors on the sidewalk at the corner of Monroe and Michigan and removed them from the North side of the garden with extreme force.

Chicago: May Day March For Palestine Prepares For Protest At DNC

Chicago, IL – On May 3, the Coalition to March on the Democratic National Convention held a rally and march to celebrate International Workers Day. The 400 attendees heeded the call from the coalition to come stand with Palestine for May Day and vowed to show up again to protest against the Democratic National Convention (DNC) when the convention comes to Chicago August 19 through 22. The coalition linked labor and immigrant rights movements in this event, as well. A special speaker at the rally was Artemio Arreola of Casa Michoacan and the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights.

The Fight To Bring Chicago Home Isn’t Over

“Bring Chicago Home.” It was a rallying cry that grew in volume and urgency over more than six years and three mayoral administrations — a demand for a dedicated funding stream to house the city’s homeless residents, numbering over 68,000 according to the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, including up to 20,000 students. The source of the funds would be an increased (but still modest) transfer tax on property sales over $1 million.  The campaign started in 2017 during the tenure of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, dubbed ​“Mayor 1%” for his record of investing in wealthy neighborhoods and downtown at the expense of the city’s diverse working class population.

Chicago Black Church Creating A New Village On The South Side

It will take a village to build a new future for Chicago’s South Side. And building that village is going to take a few decades. But the Black-led church behind the fledgling Imani Village is playing the long game. Anchored in the city’s Pullman neighborhood, Imani Village is a social enterprise owned and operated by the nearby Trinity United Church of Christ. It’s dedicated to empowering the traditionally underserved community and those surrounding it through the creation of an eco-friendly, intergenerational, mixed-use development.

Coalition Meets To Ready Massive March On The DNC

Chicago, IL – The Coalition to March on the Democratic National Convention (DNC) met in Chicago the weekend of April 13. Speaker after speaker testified with fire in their eyes about the need to march against the genocide in Gaza. Along with the speeches, people got down to the tasks needed to bring tens of thousands to Chicago in August to protest the DNC. The 450 in attendance were overwhelmingly youth. Many are brand new to protest movements, having been thrown into motion by the anti-war and Palestine solidarity movement.

Protesters Sue City For Right To Protest Genocide In Palestine

Chicago, IL – Groups supporting Palestine are suing Chicago to ensure that Joe Biden “can hear us and see us” at the Democratic National Convention in August, sats Kobi Guillory, spokesperson for the Coalition to March on the DNC. When the convention opens at the United Center, August 19, the coalition is adamant that they get the attention they deserve. Guillory states, “As the U.S.-backed Israeli genocide against the Palestinian people in Gaza continues unabated – with over 32,000 killed, almost all by U.S. bombs and missiles – we must march.

14% Of Chicago Democrats Voted Blank Or Write-In For President

Results from the March 19 primary in Chicago show a significant gap between the number of Democratic ballots submitted and the number of votes cast for one of the four listed presidential options. By contrast, in the hotly contested 2016 primary, only 12,687 voters (1.8%) declined to select a presidential option, and in 2012, when President Barack Obama ran uncontested, 24,285 (9%) declined. With 98% of precincts reporting (and the results still unofficial), 297,217 Democrats turned out to vote in the election while only 254,402 voted for any of the presidential candidates listed on the ballot — a gap of 42,815 votes, or 14.4%.

Call For Communities To Unite And Oppose Racist Attacks On Migrants

Throughout the history of Chicago, Black & Brown unity has been at the core of every democratic advancement made by working and oppressed people. Going back to the Black & Brown coalition led by Harold Washington and Rudy Lozano that got Harold Washington elected mayor, to more recent times, when Black/Latino unity won the most democratic police accountability ordinance in ECPS, and later, in getting a progressive mayor from the movement in Brandon Johnson elected. What’s clear from this history is that the movement is an unstoppable force when Black and Brown Chicagoans come together. And that fact hasn’t gone unnoticed. In the last few years, the right wing across the country has seen our gains and has intensified its attacks on us, leaning on every manner and method to try and undermine and divide us – and at such a critical time in our city’s history.
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