A little over a month ago, prominent figures from the black community met with President Obama to push agenda items that are specifically affecting the black community. For a while, actual details about the agenda seemed to have been a secret, as no one revealed exactly what the agenda items were prior to the first meeting. Even after the meeting, no one seemed to know exactly what the prominent figures of the black community brought to President Obama on behalf of the community.
In an article published on Politic365, National Urban League president Marc Morial provided more details regarding the agenda items he and other prominent community figures brought to the president on behalf of the community. The group just met with the president for the second time to get him to address at least one of the agenda items during his upcoming State of the Union Address.
Here are the agenda items Morial discussed in his article:
- Reintroduction and passage of the Urban Jobs Act allocating resources for job training, education, and support services for eligible young adults, including many who have not finished high school, to prepare them for entry into the workforce.
- Reintroduce the American Jobs Act, President Obama’s proposed package of tax cuts, investments and incentives designed to put [Americans] back to work and speed economic growth.
- We support the President’s recently announced push for a ban on assault weapons and high capacity magazines, and his call for universal background checks. In addition, we recommend a stronger focus on violence prevention, including investments in programs that create safe spaces for kids after school and improved mental health services and treatment.
- We also call for citizens to mobilize around the upcoming February 27th Supreme Court case challenging the constitutionality of Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act, which requires states and counties with a history of discriminatory voting practices to undergo Justice Department review of any change to their voting rules.
- Finally, we call for reforms of the nation’s dysfunctional and discriminatory criminal justice system. As NAACP President Ben Jealous noted, “Study after study has shown that students of color face harsher punishments in school than their white peers, African-American students are arrested far more often than their white classmates, and African-American youth have higher rates of juvenile incarceration and are more likely to be sentenced to adult prison. One in 13 African Americans of voting age is disenfranchised because of a prior criminal conviction. That’s a staggering statistic that reveals the desperate need for reform.”