As the new year turns and heads straight into 2012 streaming forward through the month of February, we come again to celebrate Black History Month and those Americans that contributed so much to America's success. However during this historic month, not all African-Americans, in Will County's District 86, have much to celebrate.
No one likes to shed light on negative information during this time of year, however, we have to hold our elected officials accountable, during good times and bad.
And the results are in... The former Democrat Representative has failed the African-American community in Will County's District 86.
District 86 hosts numerous cities within Will County: Joliet, Crest Hill, Rockdale, Elwood and Channahon, to name a few. The former 20-year House Representative presided over an economy that has failed the African-American Community. So during this time of year we have to ask ourselves Can We Afford More of the Same from Larry Walsh Jr.???.
In a 2012 Report by internet magazine "Loop 21.com" cites that overall unemployment in the African-American Community in Chicago-land stood at 15.5%.
Historically, the pattern in America has been that the national black unemployment rate is essentially double that of the white population.
Dr. Williams, a professor of economics at George Mason University, suggests that discouragement in job hunting [is a concern that affects jobless rates]. Dr. Williams wrote in an email. "Imagine the total black labor force is 100 and 90 are employed. That means the unemployment rate is 10%. Suppose 5 people who've been looking for work but can't find it stop looking (what's called discouraged worker), that means the labor force consists of 95 people and the unemployment rate drops to 5 percent. [So the unemployment numbers don't always reflect the true unemployment]."
The Chicago Defender Magazine states that as recent as late 2011, "the State Journal-Register in Springfield reports that state unemployment statistics show the unemployment rate for white youths is 24.7 percent but it's nearly double for black teenagers at 47.7. The statistics also show that 11.7 of black teenagers are employed. The rate is 30 percent for white teenagers and 26 percent for Hispanic teenagers." Does this sound like Democrat Leadership has been working for you? Can You Afford More of the Same?
Statistics, newly uncovered, sheds light on this former Representative's record - over the course of 20-Years the Democrat Representative has held the African-American community hostage to a 13% average yearly unemployment rate. Topping this average off was the unemployment rate in 2010, which reached a historic high of 17.8%.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Will County, Illinois, has 75,743 black residents, which represents 11.2% of the population. So, this Democrat's failed economic policies have affected roughly 14,000 of our County's African-American population. This is a sad statement upon our citizens of District 86. And again we must ask ourselves, with 10% current unemployment, Can We Afford More of the Same Type of Representation for the Next 2 Years??
WORSE PROSPECTS FOR AFRICAN-AMERICANS
According to U.S. Labor Statistics, "African-American men face even worse [unemployment] prospects [than others]. While the rate of long-term unemployment has grown for all demographic groups, it has grown most sharply for African-American men, who by January 2010 made up just 5.5 percent of the labor force, but 13 percent of the long-term unemployed." Can You Afford More of the Same?
GAPS IN UNEMPLOYMENT RATES
A CNNMoney Online report states: "Even when you compare black and white workers, same age range, same education, you still see pretty significant gaps in unemployment rates," said Algernon Austin, director of the Race, Ethnicity, and the Economy program at the Economic Policy Institute. "So I do think the fact of racial discrimination in the labor market continues to play a role."
"Our job creation is just not happening - certainly not at the rate necessarily to bring rapid reductions to the unemployment rate," Austin said.
So, racial discrimination, may still be a factor, but beyond that fact, what did Democrat politicians, like the former Representative, do to bolster economic opportunities in the African-American population in District 86? Answer = Not Much!
In addition, during this recession of 2008 through 2011, the taxes were raised twice on African-Americans. The FIRST SLAP to the African-American community was in 2009, with higher taxes on gasoline, food, alcohol, cigarettes, beverages and grooming products, then in 2011, ANOTHER SLAP came with the highest taxes in Illinois history - 67% upon their personal income and 50% upon businesses. For those African-American families struggling to get by, this former Democrat Representative, by his economic policies, further pushed back those struggling families, fighting to make ends-meet!
According to U.S. Census Bureau information, approximately 9.5% of all businesses in Illinois are black-owned... and the former Representative, in January 2011, raised the TAXES on these businesses by 50%, halting their growth, halting their plans for investments in the future, halting their ability to HIRE more employees and slowed-down our economy. Black entrepreneurship should be encouraged in Illinois and taxes "decreased/lowered" for all businesses, in order to "spur" economic activity and assist these businesses in investing in our economy and hiring more employees. Can You Afford More of the Same Type of Representation?
Per The 2011 Report Reality Check: "Illinois has maxed out its credit cards over the past decade. Per capita debt has risen 120% in less than 10 years, and is at the point where every African-American child born in Illinois begins life with a $9,000 state debt hanging over its head."
As reported on 9/14/11: Illinois had more poor people last year than it has had in nearly two decades, according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau, that report also showed the number of impoverished nationally is at a new high. More than 1.82 million people lived in poverty in Illinois last year, up from 1.69 million. That was the biggest number of poor since 1992 when there were 1.86 million people who were impoverished. Question: Does that sound like the former Democrat Representative was working hard for you? Can You Afford More of the Same Type of Representation from 40 year 'friend of McGuire' aka Larry Walsh Jr.?
In addition.. The 2012 budget, passed by former Democrat Representative and the rest of the State Legislature, and signed by Gov. Pat Quinn in June of 2011, cuts funding for homeless prevention services by 52 percent, eliminating $4.7 million for shelters, emergency housing and transportation. Homeless advocates are fighting for that funding to be restored.
As far back as 2009, a D.H.S. (Department of Human Services) report stated recommendations for economic development for African-Americans:
- That local manufacturing initiatives be increased significantly to provide more employment opportunities for African American men.
- Increase support for youth entrepreneurship programs in African American communities.
- That internships that lead to permanent employment be available to African American men.
- Need for mentorship programs for young men. Young men and women are not prepared. They are not Internet savvy: no email address; do not know how to prepare a resume together.
- Change attitudes in youth - Students think it's cool to dropout. This attitude must be changed.
- Role models and male mentors should be introduced to African American males in elementary school.
- Create a greater understanding of the law. Knowing the parameters of behavior will better equip persons make better behavioral and economic choices.
- Increase programs to assist in parenting skills.
- There needs to be one roof where a man can go for assessment and then be directed to appropriate resources.
Question: So why didn't the former Democrat Representative do anything to address these concerns? You can probably guess the answer.