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NAACP – Steadfast and Immovable

By Lunette Howell and Betty Valentine, Toledo NAACP Editorial Team 

Happy Holidays from Toledo Branch NAACP!  We are in the process of gaining information to educate our community on issues and concerns that impact our lives every day.  Our responsibility to you is to make sure we inform our community of how we can collectively address these issues.

Health – The HIV Epidemic

The black community bears the greatest burden of the HIV epidemic, more than any other racial or ethnic group. FACT - African Americans account for 41 percent of all people living with HIV and 44 percent of all new infections. Today the HIV epidemic is one of the most pressing health issues facing the Black community.

The Black Church & HIV initiative was established to form a national network of faith leaders, religious institutions, and community members committed to making change and ending the HIV epidemic in black America. There is an immediate need for Leaders in our community to take action for what is happening with HIV in the black community.  

The National NAACP has made the commitment to enlist faith leaders as change agents to address the disparate and severe impact of HIV on African Americans.  As a high-risk population, African Americans are more likely to progress from HIV to AIDS within one year of being diagnosed with HIV and less likely to know they have HIV or to seek treatment.

This threat to the survival and well-being of our community is a social injustice. HIV is impacting our community and it is our responsibility to speak out and fight the systems that make and keep us vulnerable to HIV infection. We invite you to join our fight for a system that ensures that we all have access to the information, insurance, prevention, care, and treatment that we deserve.

The OPIOID Epidemic

Opioid abuse is a serious public health issue.  Drug overdose deaths are the leading cause of injury death in the United States. You don’t hear as much about the HIV issues in our community because of all the focus and hype on the Opioid Epidemic. We should question the choices we are offered for pain.  We should challenge the medical professionals who prescribe medications that cause addictions.  We as a community should educate ourselves and our families on alternative methods to relieve pain and depression.

Every day more than 90 Americans die after overdosing on opioids.  This is a serious national crisis that affects public health as well as social and economic welfare. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the total economic effect of prescription opioid misuse in the United States alone is $78.5 billion a year, including the cost of healthcare, lost productivity, addiction treatment, and criminal justice involvement.

VOTING - Why Each Individual Vote is Important….Popular Vote vs. Electoral College!

We continue to remind you that “It’s your right to VOTE”!  Election period is over for now but we know that voting rights and information gathering is a 365-day process.  Everyday is an opportunity to educate our community on voting.  In 2018 we will proceed with classes to educate you on the intricacies of the voting process.

The process of selecting a president is a complicated one.  The constitution states the president, a single executive, would serve an unlimited number of four-year terms, however a constitutional amendment in 1951 limited the president to two elected terms.  In addition, the president would be chosen neither by the Congress nor directly by the people.  Instead the Constitution provides for his/her selection by an intermediary body called the Electoral College

Because our founders feared giving too much power to the electorate, we do not actually vote for the president and vice president in presidential elections.  Rather, we cast our votes in November for electors (members of the Electoral College), who in turn actually vote for the president.   The electors cast their votes for the candidates about six weeks after the general election. 

 The Constitution provides for each state to have as many electoral votes as it does senators and representatives in Congress.  There are 538 electoral votes in all; 270 are needed to win the presidency.

The importance of the Electoral College is that all the states but Maine and Nebraska operate on a winner-take-all basis.  Thus, the winner in Ohio, even if he or she has less than a majority of the vote, wins all of the state’s 18 electoral votes.  The loser in Ohio may have won 49 percent of the popular votes, but he or she gets nothing in the Electoral College.

It is possible, then, for the actual popular vote winner to lose in the Electoral College.  This is what happened in our last general election.  So you see each individual vote is important as our cumulative votes determine the number of electoral votes from our state.


Black/Brown Unity Coalition

Members of the Black/Brown Unity Coalition Ray Wood – Toledo NAACP President, Baldemar Velasquez-FLOC President, Pastor Otis Gordon – Warren AME, Bishop Robert Culp – First Church of God  met with Suzette Cowell, President & CEO -Toledo Urban Federal Credit Union. 

Meetings have begun to establish the articles of corporation for the Black/Brown Unity Coalition.  The Coalition’s Code of Conduct agreement with the Mayor’s Office, Toledo Police Department and other community Leaders is available on our website and copies are available in the NAACP Office.

Upcoming Meeting Locations for 2018:

January 9, 2018, 7:00 P.M.  – African American Legacy Building at 1326 Collingwood

February through April, 2018, 7:00 P.M. - The 2nd Tuesday of each month – Mott Branch Library at 1085 Dorr Street

Join the NAACP - $30/year for an Adult membership and $15/year for youth under 20 years of age.    View our website at www.naacptoledo.org.  Email us at info@toledonaacp.org.


Copyright © 2017 by [The Sojourner's Truth]. All rights reserved.
Revised: 08/16/18 14:12:37 -0700.

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