What Dan is Reading: Black Families Came to Chicago by the Thousands...

There was an important article in the New York Times on Feb. 16 describing the exodus of Black families from Chicago. In the 1980s, Chicago lost 150,000 manufacturing jobs which resulted in urban poverty. The loss was due to challenges that could have been addressed. Publicly traded companies were eviscerated by demands to make the highest possible return. Local government did little to retain smaller companies. Schools closed vocational education programs even as manufacturers were shifting to more complex work. The article fails to mention that there is a growing and determined effort to rebuild manufacturing. High school programs exist that meet the talent requirements of advanced manufacturing companies and can result in jobs paying $70,000. A Young Manufacturers Association has formed to support working youth. A coalition is working to establish a modern industrial park with companies, research centers, and workforce training. There is an ongoing, concerted effort to find solutions that will benefit local residents and stop gentrification that is pushing Black people out of the city, but this crucial process needs government support if it is to succeed.

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3411 W. Diversey Ave, Suite 10

Chicago, IL 60647

773-278-5418

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