The Business of the City: Miscellaneous

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Happy Kwanzaa

On Saturday, I attended the 14th Annual Plainfield Kwanzaa Celebration at Washington Community School. After bringing greetings to the people as an elected official, I sat back and watched this wonderful event. The principle of Kujichagulia (Self-Determination) was the focus for Day Two (yesterday). 

Today's focus is Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility). The awesome Tamara Horn sang "Lift Ev'ry Voice and Sing," and the Emcees for the day were MBa Heru Ahket and young Ryan Brown, from New Jersey Orators. Storyteller Mfundishi Jhuty Mes Hassan K. Salim also poured the libations for the ancestors. There were also performances by the Universal African Dance Ensemble, the Emerson Community Youth Theater, and others. Special thanks go to the Division of Recreation and a great group of volunteers for making it an awesome event. Below are just a few photos.


Sunday, December 14, 2014

"Millions March NYC"

March for justice and
Internalize the meaning:
"Black lives do matter."
Herald Square, Saturday, December 13.

Monday, December 1, 2014

World AIDS Day 2014:Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-Free Generation

The theme for World AIDS Day 2014 is "Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-Free Generation." The link below will take you to the official government site, which lists activities and events:

The statistics among African American youth remain alarming--here is the CDC Factsheet (from February 2014):

As we voice our concerns about violence committed against our youth at the hands of the state, let us also keep in mind that there is another killer among us--we must work with our young people to "focus, partner, and achieve an AIDS-free generation"--the statistics clearly show the likelihood for youth to contract HIV/AIDS--70% don't even know that they are infected. 

As in the past, I have posted the IMPACT (Intensive Mobilization to Promote AIDS Awareness through Community-based Technologies) Initiative Statistics for Plainfield for the year ending 2013. 

Plainfield remains on the list of the Top Ten Cities with the highest number of HIV/AIDS cases (we are number 9). The IMPACT Initiative is “… a city-by-city community mobilization initiative designed to galvanize and support African American leaders to reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS in cities with the highest prevalence of HIV/AIDS.” (from the NJDHSS web site).

Further, as you can see from this chart, black women in particular represent 64% of women with HIV/AIDS cases (the fastest rising group): Female NJ Residents at Diagnosis

A couple of years ago, I posted a link to filmmaker Cyrille Phipps's documentary, Seen But Not Heard: AIDS, Sexual Politics, and the Untold War Against Black Women. Here is a link to the trailer for the documentary:

As you go through your day, talk to a young person about getting tested and about protecting herself/himself from HIV/AIDS.