Greater Metro

Sales tax increase gets boost from local NAACP

NAACP-Tax-ReferendumMadeleine Taylor gave specific reasons why the Memphis Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is endorsing a countywide half-cent sales tax increase.

"The funds would be used to support pre-K," said Taylor, the organization's executive director, during a press conference at NAACP headquarters on Monday (Oct. 15.)

Members of the group's executive board surrounded Taylor. It was crafted as a show of solidarity for the half-cent tax increase that Mayor A C Wharton Jr., other elected officials, a group of ministers and a coalition of civic and community organizations have been pushing for more than a week.


Whalum labels NAACP support of sales tax hike ‘heartbreaking’

The Rev. Dr. Kenneth T. Whalum Jr. – taking advantage of social media – has sent out word that he finds the Memphis Branch-NAACP's support of the proposed half-cent sales tax increase "heartbreaking."

"It's heartbreaking to read about Memphis' oldest and most revered civil rights organization gathered in their corporate offices on Vance Avenue to announce their support for a county-wide half-cent sales tax increase that may or may not be used to fund what is referred to as "universal pre-k education," wrote Whalum in a message widely distributed on Wednesday.


NYSE Workshop at EmergeMemphis

NYSEWorkshop-tiltedphotoSince becoming president of the Black Business Association of Memphis, Roby S. Williams' chief goal has been to promote BBA's member businesses and provide them with full opportunities in the marketplace.

That's one of the reasons Williams chose to attend last week's New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) Big StartUp "Small Business Connections: Marketing Meets Microfinancing" workshop at EmergeMemphis, a business and technology-based incubator.


Bowers, Dems call for ‘poll-watcher brigade’

PressConfrenceforPollWatcheFormer State Sen. Kathryn Bowers says a series of actions by the local election commission amount to "shenanigans" – a point she stressed during a press conference this week (Oct. 10).

Set against a backdrop of elected Democratic officials and party surrogates, Bowers staged a call for volunteers to work as a 200-member "poll-watching brigade."


Rock-steady Armstrong shares police-director views

Toney ArmstrongMemphis Police Director Toney Armstrong says it is time for the African-American community to quit reacting and take action to fight the growing pattern of youth violence in the city.

"The sad reality is that it takes an incident like this to raise awareness," said Armstrong, referencing the Sept. 24 fatal shooting of 15-year-old Justin Thompson by off-duty police officer Terrance Shaw. "I feel like there are things as a community that we should be doing now to prevent us from having to march for another young man who may be the victim of a shooting, not by a police officer, but by another young man like him."


Healing the Broken Village – not ‘moment’ but ‘movement’

BV-DrWmYoung"The Maasai Tribes of Kenya and Tanzania are revered as some of the most intelligent and accomplished cultures on the African culture. Their warriors were among the most fearsome, and their traditions meaningful and enduring. Since the very beginning, elders and villagers from neighboring tribes have greeted each other with 'Kasserian Ingeria': 'How are the children?' The well being of their children is most prized over all. It is still the tribe's greeting and their gravest concern. We must, likewise, understand the urgency of that inquiry, 'How are the children?' Our village is broken, and we must – all of us – take ownership of it's healing. This is our greatest concern: healing our broken village."


Movie, panel discussion frame talk on education

Local educators, business leaders and parents gathered to help "break the monopoly of mediocrity" in the Memphis school system during a forum on education reform held Wednesday (Oct. 10) at the Malco Paradiso Theatre in East Memphis.

Hosted by the Greater Memphis Chamber, The Institute for a Competitive Workforce and the National Chamber Foundation, the event featured the controversial film "Won't Back Down" and a panel discussion on the evolving education system in Greater Memphis.


NOVA means help for kids exposed to violence

Nova-1Imagine a network of closely collaborating service providers and other partners.

See them in a formation designed for them to draw upon each other.

Know that it is all for the care of children exposed to violence, and to give support to their families.

Shelby County Mayor Mark H. Luttrell Jr. envisioned just such a scenario and on Wednesday he announced a program put together to make it real. The Network for Overcoming Violence and Abuse – or NOVA – already has begun providing services in neighborhoods within six zip codes in the Hickory Hill and Raleigh-Frayser areas. That's where data has shown high incidences in which children experience violence at home or are the victims or witnesses of crime.


TSD extends nominations for 2012 Men of Excellence

Last month, The New Tri-State Defender, the Mid-South's leading source of news, politics, entertainment and lifestyle information from the African-American perspective, announced the opening of nominations for its fourth annual Men of Excellence Reception and Awards Celebration.


Yes vote urged on county sales tax increase

votefortaxincreaseLeaders representing a coalition of civic organizations stepped up Wednesday (Oct. 10) to voice support for the ½ cent county sales tax increase.

Participating organizations at a Wednesday afternoon press conference at 160 S. Hollywood included Stand for Children, the Shelby County Democratic Party, the Mid-South Peace & Justice Center, Latino Memphis, Fight Crime Invest in Kids, and Our Kids Our Future.


BRIEFS & THINGS: NAACP launches 'Come Home to the NAACP'

The Memphis Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) has launched its fall membership campaign called "Come Home to the NAACP."

The civil rights and human rights organization is calling on churches, social and civic organizations to join its annual harvest of NAACP memberships and bring them to the "Membership Lay Down."


‘Growing the Garden of Hope, One Seed at a Time’

The South Memphis Alliance (SMA) is hosting an annual event, The Unity Dinner, this Saturday, Oct. 13, from 6 p.m. to 8pm at the Family Life Youth Center located at 369 G.E. Patterson Avenue, behind Temple of Deliverance.


‘Breaking the Monopoly of Mediocrity’ stops in Memphis

Education reform will be at the core of an interactive forum that will feature a panel discussion and a special screening of the film "Won't Back Down" on Wednesday (Oct. 10).

The event unfolds from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Malco Paradiso at 584 South Mendenhall. It's part of Breaking the Monopoly of Mediocrity, a cross-country tour to discuss education reform in local communities, highlight the important role the business community must play, and encourage local leaders to become a catalyst for change.