We Can Do This

Uploaded by laurbanleague on 12.04.2008

The state of black Los Angeles [brothers and sisters].
For African Americans all across this city, we are at the bottom of nearly every statistical
category. Staggering double digit in unemployment rates,
health crises, high substance abuse rates, and multiple active gangs.
devoted to fighting gangs and And while the conditions of African Americans have deteriorated
over the last 15 years period the number of not-for-profits has almost tripled.
More money, more organizations and less impact; now that's really thats some bad math.
Clearly there's something about the way that we are going about solving our problems that
simply does not compute. Access the adequate health care nascent in
our community. Unemployment rates that were more than twice
the average of Los Angeles. Life expectancy for African Americans were
by far the worst in the city. Our household net worth was a fraction of
that of Whites and even Latinos High school drop out rates exceding 50%.
This battle is one we all must fight and win. How can we allow young people like that drop
out by the thousands and be forever lost? There's a message for all of us.
It's not fair and it's not right what's happening to our young children today with in the confines
of this city. They simply don't deserve it.
But I submit to you tonight that it is passed time for these analyses.
Theres no time left to wait for us. 50% of our kids our dropping out of high school
every year . These trends must be deemed as crisis.
These issues are not my problem. They're not the Urban League's problem.
They're not the civil rights community's problems. They're not even the Black Cacuses problems.
This battle is one we all must fight to win. We can do this.
We can do this. Ladies and gentelmen, I will tell you this
these are very challenging times that e live in.
Times that call for innovative approches. This city is just too large to think about
changing all of Los Angeles. The answer lies in breaking the city down
indvidual neighborhoods. No one can imagine changing all of Los Angeles,
but we can all imagine transforming one section or one neighborhood at a time.
Yes we live in difficult and troubling times today, but make no mistake about it, these
times represent a defining moment in American History.
The problems of urban America today will ultimately in one way or another impact all of us.
No effort could be successful unless someone or someones stood up and actually took acountabily.
What this meant for us the Los Angeles Urban League oranization that it was time for action.
We made it clear that the Los Angeles Urban League with an 85 year track record as going
to put ourselves on the line for outcomes within our community.
Fact is that we are reaping the dividends of the legacy of John Mack, in Renee Etteninee,
Sandra Carter and the others that came along to do the hard work and heavy lifting of the
LA Urban League. With all of the leaders surrounding the area
keeping their involvement. We met with pastors and we involved them and
their following at their churches. We involved elected officials and we engaged leaders.
We restructured our own organization.