close and back to page

Latest News

Latest News

Obama to Trump: We're Supposed to Stand up to Discrimination and to Nazi Sympathizers

To voters: You can make sure that white nationalists don't feel empowered to march in Charlottesville in the middle of the day.

CLICK ON DETRIOT

Former President Barack Obama kicked off his campaigning for November's midterms, on Friday afternoon, and took jabs at President Trump and the spineless backbones of his Republican constituents.

Obama spared no expense rebuking the administration's actions that have emboldened racists.


"We're supposed to stand up to discrimination, and clearly and unequivocally to Nazi sympathizers," he said at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. "How hard can that be saying Nazis are bad?"

He also called out the administration for furthering policies in the criminal justice system that unjustly impact Black men, foster discrimination and sexual harassment in the workplace, and impede upon people's civil liberties.

You can't say there's racism in America, so you won't vote, Obama said.

"Better is worth fighting for," he commented.

Obama explained that civil rights didn't end racism, but it made things better.

"You can make sure that white nationalists don't feel empowered to march in Charlottesville in the middle of the day," he said.

The division in this country did not start with Trump, but he is capitalizing on years of resentment, Obama said.

"[Trump] is a symptom not the cause."

Regarding Trump's immigration policies not welcoming "strivers and dreamers," he said, "We can't put walls up around America. Walls don't keep threats."Obama talked about policies to push back tyrants in the countries that are causing people to flee.

The Trump era has complicated Obama's post-presidency, but Obama's call to action was that citizens, through their vote, put an end to bad policies and abuse of power.

Obama criticized the Republican Party, once the leaders of abolishing slavery, for making a home for politics of paranoia.

Also, for systemic attacks on voting rights of minorities, not having any checks and balances, and making excuses by saying people on the inside are preventing some of what Trump is doing, but cosigning the majority of it.

He asked: "What happened to the Republican party?"

Obama mentioned that, when you get close to ideals that move a country forward, then sometimes people push back for fear of change. But, he continued, "More often it's manufactured by the powerful and privileged who want to keep us divided and angry and cynical, so they can keep their power and privilege."

Obama went on to say that November elections are more important than any elections in all time, and that just a glance at recent headlines shows us this is different, stakes are higher, consequences of sidelining are more dire.

Last month, he released a first round of endorsements – 81 candidates on the ballot – most of whom were first time politicians and diverse, including a large number of women, and people of color and veterans.

"I'm here today because everyone of us as citizens need to determine who we are and what we stand for," Obama said after receiving the Institute of Government and Public Affairs Paul H. Douglas Award for Ethics in Government.

"As a fellow citizen, the message is to vote because our democracy depends on it."

Reader Question: What are you concerned about regarding the midterm elections this Fall? Will you vote?

Join The Conversation below.


Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole Selected as Board Chair and Seventh President of National Council of Negro Women

"My heart is overflowing with gratitude for this honor to serve as the seventh president of this organization that has been a voice of and for Black women," said Dr. Cole.

The National Council of Negro Women (NCMW) selected Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole as its chair and seventh president during the closing session of their 58th Biennial National Convention in Washington, D.C. Ms. Ingrid Saunders Jones, who served as NCNW's chair for more than six years, will continue to serve the organization as the immediate past chair.

Read More Show Less

HBCUs​ Set Foundation for Black Politicians in Key Positions

"Black people have always been underestimated. The Black college experience is still an exceptional way to train young people," said Senator Art Haywood, a Morehouse Graduate.

Twitter

What Kamala Harris, Alma Adams, Andrew Gillum and Stacey Abrams all have in common, in addition to being influential in U.S. politics, is they're graduates of Historically Black Colleges and Universities ( HBCUs) — Howard University, North Carolina A&T, Florida Agricultural & Mechanical University, and Spelman College.

Approximately 40 percent of the members of Congress are HBCU graduates, according to the Network Journal, a Black professional and small business magazine. And recipients of The United Negro College Fund and Thurgood Marshall Foundation scholarships graduate from college at rates well above the national average.

"We're producing outstanding leaders in all of the major professions," said Harry L. Williams, president and CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund and former Delaware State president.

"Anytime you can look at (HBCU) success stories, it just enhances their relevancy and continues to move them forward in a positive way."

This year, a record 38 women of color were elected to Congress. Many of them are HBCU graduates.

The prospect of so many Black-college graduates being elected to statewide office in the same year is unprecedented, Keneshia Grant, an assistant professor of political science at Howard University, said.

And they are touting their HBCU training. Abrams expressed her disapproval of legislation plans for education that did not include those institutions.

Gillum responded to President Trump's tweet attacking him about his lack of Ivy League education:

Art Haywood is one of four Black state senators in Pennsylvania, and one of two from Morehouse.

"If the two Black state senators had come from Harvard or Yale, then those schools would get all the credit," Haywood said.

"Black people have always been underestimated," Haywood said. "I don't think there's any more validation required. The Black college experience is still an exceptional way to train young people."

Of politicians like Abrams and Gillum, the president of HBCU Dillard University Walter Kimbrough said they are sending a message: "It's a reaffirmation, not only for students but for families, that you can go to an HBCU and compete with anyone."

Approximately 13 percent of HBCU graduates are CEOS, 40 percent are engineers and 50 percent are professors at non-HBCUs, according to the Network Journal.

The HBCUs Make America Strong: The Positive Economic Impact of Historically Black Colleges and Universities study shows how the United States economy benefits from HBCUs: $14.8 billion in economic impact. In addition, graduates predominantly come from low-income areas, giving them and the communities the opportunity to break cycles of poverty and open doors to successful and lucrative careers. Individual graduates can earn $927,000 within their lifetime, $130 billion collectively over their lifetime.

Anthony B. Coleman: Veterans Should Discover Their Passion and Allow it to Lead to a Profession

Coleman, talks with DiversityInc about his journey transitioning from life in the U.S. Navy to working for Kaiser Permanente as an Assistant Hospital Administrator.

Anthony B. Coleman, DHA, is the Assistant Hospital Administrator (Operations Support) for Kaiser Permanente, Fontana and Ontario Medical Centers.

He was born at Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center. At 17, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy serving aboard the USS Pioneer (MCM 9) and USS Ardent (MCM 12). After completing a full sea tour he was transferred to shore duty, and earned a Bachelor's degree in Workforce, Education and Development, as well as a Master of Health Administration. He later earned a commissioned as a Naval Officer serving in various roles overseas and afloat, including Chief Financial Officer at U.S. Naval Hospital Beaufort SC, Human Resources Director at U.S. Naval Hospital Yokosuka, Japan and Medical Operations Officer onboard the USS Harry S Truman (CVN 75) nuclear powered aircraft carrier.

Anthony retired in 2016 with 20 years of honorable service and holds a Doctor of Health Administration Degree and currently serves as the Assistant Administrator (Operations Support) for Kaiser Permanente Fontana and Ontario Medical Centers.

DI: What was the initial transition like going from the armed services to a civilian career?

My initial thoughts on transition brought unnecessary anxiety. However, when I learned that my preceptor was a retired Air Force Colonel, it helped put me at ease about the transition. On my first day at Kaiser Permanente, the staff and physicians welcomed me and ensured that I had the support I needed to make a successful transition.

DI: What are some skills or habits you developed while serving in the military that have helped you in your current role?

Two things stick out in my mind as important.

The first is transitioning mindset from duty to desire. I joined the navy at 17, and during the first 3-5 years of my military career I didn't realize I was part of something bigger than myself so I competed tasks out of obligation (duty). After completing my first full sea tour, I realized how my efforts contributed to the overall mission of the U.S. Navy and the duties I carried out started to come from a desire to do so. This realization helped shape my leadership style and how I groomed young sailors early on in their enlistments. I wanted them to realize their very important part in the overall U.S. Navy mission and motivate them to bring their "A" game every day.

This has helped in my current role overseeing nine non-clinical departments (Housekeeping, Food and Nutrition, Engineering, Construction, Parking, Safety, Property Management, Telecommunications, Security and Supply Chain Management) where the majority of the employees I oversee are entry-level and can feel disconnected to health care because they are not physicians or nurses. However, I stress to them as often as possible that whether their job is to nourish the patient, clean and disinfect a patient room, make sure life-saving equipment is in working order, or any other of the hundreds of non-clinical functions they perform day in and day out, they too are vital to a patient's health and healing.

The second is attention to detail. Most times, my staff are the first and/or last interaction our members have with Kaiser Permanente. It is crucial for them to pay attention to every detail about the patient they encounter because each and every detail about the patient, large or small can help us do a better job in serving them. Sometimes, it may be as simple as a smile or word of encouragement that could make all the difference in the patient experience.

DI: What career advice can you offer to veterans or current military folks who are looking to pivot, and what types of jobs should they be looking for?

Stay current in world health affairs, as well as the political climate in the US. Now more than ever, politics are shaping our approach to health care and vice versa. Veterans and current military members should make sure they have an idea of where civilian health care is, as well as where it's going in the future, so they can demonstrate their value to potential health care employers.

Devote time to discovering their passion and allow it to lead them to a profession. So often, when military members plan to transition to civilian life, they tend to focus on their ability to continue providing for their families beyond military service. This can cause us to accept positions for the sake of securing post military employment, or accept positions that are not aligned with our core beliefs, or passion.

DI: Did you always have an idea of the type of career you wanted to pursue after the military?

Yes. As a matter of fact, I began planning my exit from the military in 2005 when I discovered my passion for eliminating health disparities however, because I was a single father of a 5 year old girl, my mom convinced me to complete a full career first.

In 2004, the Navy sent me to graduate school to learn how to be a health administrator. During the summer of 2005, I interned at Wallace Thomson Hospital in rural Union County, South Carolina. While there I met a kitchen worker who impressed me with her skill in preparing meals for all of the sick patients at the hospital, specific to their individual needs. Her name was Pee Wee and even though she never finished high school, and worked a second job to make ends meet she somehow found a way to show compassion for each patient while contributing to the healing environment.

After the rotation was complete, I went back to finish graduate school and learned that Pee Wee died of a stroke. She was 52. Her death really affected me and a began to look at how a person in America could die so young of a preventable health issue. That's when I learned about health disparities and discovered my passion for eliminating them. I understand that I may not be able to complete this task in my lifetime however, I am completely comfortable with making it my life's work at Kaiser Permanente.

White Nationalists Feel at Home Visiting the White House

Identity Evropa leader, whose group believes in returning people of color back to native homelands, posts tour photos. Meanwhile, Trump calls Black reporter's white nationalism question "racist."

TWITTER

Patrick Casey, leader of alt-right white nationalist group, Identity Evropa, and Charlottesville marcher, posted a visit to the White House on social media this week:

Read More Show Less

Mother of Murdered Black Teen Wins Georgia House Seat

"I was looking beyond my own tragedy," Lucy McBath said.

TWITTER

Winning in a district with affluent white voters as the majority, Lucy McBath was advised initially during her campaign not to talk about the details of her 17-year-old son's murder.

Instead, she not only mentioned Jordan Davis' story, she also called attention to the reality of other Black teens like him, including Trayvon Martin.

McBath, a Democrat, defeated Republican incumbent Karen Handel who had been elected to represent Georgia's 6th Congressional District just last year.

Read More Show Less

Andrew Gillum Campaign Readies for Recount

"I, like so many others, hoped beyond hope that we'd be able to [have a] recount," Sili Recio, a community organizer in Orlando, told DiversityInc.

Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate and Tallahassee mayor, Andrew Gillum, conceded the race for governor at 11 p.m. on Tuesday. Gillum lead a masterful campaign. The margins were incredibly close. So close that the community gathered, along with his camp, to ensure that he could get a recount, and, as of Thursday, it's headed in that direction.

The initial call to action, which began at 10 a.m. on Thursday, was to cure issues with provisional ballots because of the sheer number of them. With the Bill Nelson/Rick Scott Senate race so close, as well, it was imperative that every vote be counted.

A campaign office in Orlando was one of the main locations where volunteers showed up to help in every capacity. People that worked directly on the Gillum campaign were there as well Nelson supporters. There were well over 400 volunteers across the building's threshold.

Volunteers putting in the workPhoto courtesy of Sili Recio

How did all of this happen so quickly?

It was the power of social media.

A bright, creative social media director/ influencer of a nonprofit organization with a grassroots community organizing background, Sili Recio, was a main player at the Orlando location.

Recio was crucial in creating social media awareness so the people who voted via provisional ballots would truly have the opportunity to have their votes counted.

"I showed up to volunteer in whatever capacity I was needed in. Social media is my specialty so, I started by coordinating for some images to be created in order to get the word out and provide those that had voted via provisional ballot with the information they needed in order to ensure that their ballot was cured," Recio told DiversityInc.

"I bounced around from initially thinking I'd go knock on doors and provide voters with affidavits, if needed, to phone banking and leading the charge of attempting to find the provisional ballot voters on social media. I called it creative locating and my defacto social media team did a fantastic job in going through the list and doing everything in their power to make sure that people knew what had to be done in order for their vote to count."

Recio added, "I, like so many others hoped beyond hope that we'd be able to recount Gillum as well. I didn't know how it was to be done but, I'm glad it got handled."

An unnamed supporter at the office, a gentleman who was undergoing chemotherapy, stood out among volunteers. Despite his physical condition, he shared a message of hope, persistence and love. He said this was too monumental of a movement to miss.

His inspiring effort became even more incredible when he shared all eight pages of the late Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have A Dream" speech with the rest of the group.

Another volunteer, Sabrina, put in hours of work. Ironically, she didn't even live in Orlando. Sabrina had just flown in for a conference, heard about what was being done with reference to call to action and drove to the site straight from the airport.

Related Story: It's Not Over for Andrew Gillum: Florida Governor Race Could Head to Recount

Democracy in Color's Steve Phillips Shares His Perspective on Midterm Elections

There was an extraordinary turnout of people rallying for "the defender of white supremacy in the White House," said Phillips.

Author Steve Phillips speaking at a 2016 DiversityInc event.

By Keka Araujo and Sheryl Estrada

There's a multicultural progressive New American Majority that made its voice heard in Tuesday's midterm elections, according to Steve Phillips, a national political leader and civil rights lawyer.

Read More Show Less

Price Match Patty: White Woman Tells Latinx Women They're on Welfare

The Children's Place may not be so welcoming if you're Black or Brown.

FACEBOOK

Miriam and Carlita Alejandro, Latinx sisters, shopping at The Children's Place in Camp Hill, Pa., got harassed by a nosey store clerk when they ask to price match clothes. A sales associate said the women were angry because they're on welfare.

Miriam said she was there to help a family who had lost everything in a fire by purchasing clothes for a child. Ms. Rhonda, the store clerk who was helping the ladies, said they may have to wait for the price check because the store was busy.

Miriam wrote on her Facebook page that she responded to Ms. Rhonda: "'Lancaster never gives us any issues or said such a thing, but okay.' Then Price Match Patty aka Genie who was never in our conversation started getting smart saying that we (my sister & I) 'were mad because we were on welfare.'"

Ms. Rhonda didn't know what to do when the Alejandro sisters reported what the nosey store employee said, but she attempted to chastise her. Miriam started recording to document the experience they had.




Price Match Patty has been fired, according to a company statement provided on Monday. Carlita Alejandro posted on Facebook that the company called and offered gift cards and reward points to continue spending her money at the retailer.

Because that's the way to handle your company's screw up-- buy off the people your employees have offended?

Alejandro wrote, "I will NEVER feel safe nor welcomed shopping their stores again!!"

The Children's Place has a history of discrimination. In 2000, they lost a lawsuit concerning profiling customers and had to provide anti-discrimination training in all stores in Massachusetts and hire a consultant to look at their policies.

Unrelated to the incident, two executives left the company this week (Pamela Wallack and Anurup Pruthi), "to pursue other opportunities" — the only minority and the only female in the C-Suite (other than the female CEO). The Children's Place Inc. has never participated in DiversityInc's Top 50 Companies for Diversity competition.

CEO and president Jane Elfers said, "As we approach the last phase of our major systems implementations, the opportunity exists for significant efficiencies across the organization, and today we are announcing a more streamlined senior leadership structure."

Price Match Patty has not been fully identified yet, but some commenters on social media say she's married to a Black man, like Key Fob Kelly in St. Louis. That wouldn't excuse her behavior anyway.

Others say they have been profiled at that same store by Price Match Patty and others before: