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August 08, 2002

Community Thursday (8-8)

Roundup of community activism, August 8

  • The National Council of La Raza has issues a "snapshot" (pdf) of employment for latinos. The marginal employment status of blacks and latinos is reflected in far more volatile unemployment rates-- where white unemployment varied between just 5.0% and 5.3% this year, latino unemploymkent has ranged between 7.1% and 8.1% and black unemployment has bounced between 9.8% and 11.2%.
  • The rapid expansion of the asian population means that asian language ballots will be required in states across the country-- a wide expansion from 1990 when assian language ballots were required only in Hawaii and parts of New York. Now, there will be Chinese ballots in Cook County, Illinois, Korean ballots in California's Orange County, and Vietnamese ballots in Harris County, Texas.
  • Anita Bryant Two? Twenty years ago, orange juice spokesmodel Bryant led a high-profile campaign that succssfully repealed gay civil rights provisions passed in Miami-Dade. Only in 1998 were antidiscrimination provisions passed again in the county and rightwing groups are mobilizing for a September 10th ballot initiative which will again put the issue to the voters. The National Gay & Lesbian Task Force among others is mobilizng nationally to help the anti-hate side to win on election day.
  • Tucked into the trade bill signed by Bush this week was a provision giving Customs Service agents blanket immunity from lawsuit even if they commit illegal acts under a "good faith" provision. Given a rancid history of racist treatement by custom officials (detailed in this Government Accounting Office report), this is more bad news for civil liberties.

    Posted by Nathan at August 8, 2002 09:17 AM

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