Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle, Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia and Chicago Latino aldermen called for the resignation of Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez on Monday over her handling of the Laquan McDonald case.
During a morning press conference at the Chicago Temple Building, Garcia and four Chicago aldermen criticized Alvarez for taking more than a year to charge Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke with first-degree murder in the October 2014 shooting death of 17-year-old McDonald.
Alvarez, who is facing a tough primary challenge, announced the charges against Van Dyke last Tuesday, the same day the city of Chicago released graphic police dash-cam video showing the white officer shooting the African-American teen 16 times. The city was required to publicly release the video under a court order issued earlier this month. Prior to the court order, Chicago officials had refused to release the dash-cam video, citing investigations into the shooting.
The following was written by Chicago journalist Curtis Black.
Pastors invoked the Battle of Jericho -with the Chicago Housing Authority as the wall keeping people out of their promised land - at an Interfaith Call to Action rally demanding preservation of public housing at Lathrop Homes last week.
"There's a barrier standing in the way of thousands of people who need a home," said Rev. Bruce Ray of Kimball Avenue Church. "There's a barrier standing in the way of new homes in a land of promise...It's the Chicago Housing Authority."
As fellow pastors held up a wall with the letters "CHA" on it, Ray added, "CHA might as well stand for 'Can't House Anyone.'"
The following is by Rosi Carrasco, an undocumented mother of two and migrant rights organizer with Organized Communities Against Deportations in Chicago, IL.
As we reach November 20th, I remember that night one year ago when immigrant families packed into a room together to watch the President announce executive action on immigration. He had already signaled that he'd be responding to the unprecedented community pressure against the record deportations that had surpassed two million at that point. He had publicly committed to reform inhumane policy and finally it looked like the delays would end.
Among us were friends who've called the U.S. home for 20 years but who haven't had children, others with kids born here and others without. There were already people who had doubts about what would happen, who had already had to fight their own removal or young people who didn't meet the criteria that would've made them eligible for the deferred action of 2012.
My family and I weren't in that category, but that's where we ended up by the end of the night. We arrived in the U.S. in the Spring of 1994, a history like many families, we came when our kids still small. We've lived, worked, and built lives here. Distant from where we came from, part of the labor of building a new life is learning to carry those we love close in our hearts even if they're physically so far away.
Security workers at O'Hare International Airport went on strike Thursday, alleging unfair labor practices by their employer Universal Security.
Fourteen out of 160 O'Hare security officers employed by Universal Security staged the one-day "unfair labor practice" strike to protest against alleged retaliation by their employer for speaking out about work conditions and organizing.
"These workers are the people who work hard to keep our passengers safe, but they work in a hostile environment each and every day and are constantly under the threat of losing their jobs," said Genie Kastrup, vice president and chief of staff with SEIU* Local 1.
In light of a new survey detailing the negative impact of homelessness on Chicago children, homeless advocates in the city launched a new campaign Wednesday aimed at improving housing stability and educational supports for families lacking stable homes.
Last school year, there were an estimated 13,054 families in Chicago who experienced homelessness, a number that has tripled over the past 12 years, advocates said at a morning press conference.
"Parents and, most especially, their children, are suffering in Chicago," said Eithne McMenamin, associate policy director at the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless. "They are suffering the effects of unstable housing and the resulting educational instability."
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