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2019 NNPA DTU Journalism Fellowship

PRESS ROOM: Houston Texans Announce Dates And Times For 2019 Training Camp Presented By Xfinity

HOUSTON FORWARD TIMES — Houston Texans Training Camp presented by XFINITY will begin on Thursday, July 25 as the Texans take the field in preparation for the 2019 season.

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Photo by: Houston Texans
By The Houston Texans

Team returns to Houston to host training camp at Houston Methodist Training Center in 2019

Houston Texans Training Camp presented by XFINITY will begin on Thursday, July 25 as the Texans take the field in preparation for the 2019 season.

Six training camp practices will be open to the public: Thursday, August 1; Saturday, August 3; Saturday, August 10; Sunday, August 11; Wednesday, August 14 and Thursday, August 15. The practices on Wednesday, August 14 and Thursday, August 15 will be joint practices with the Detroit Lions. All practices will begin at approximately 9:10 a.m. CT.

The Texans will also travel to Green Bay for joint practices with the Packers on Monday, August 5 and Tuesday, August 6 leading up to the first preseason game on Thursday, August 8. All training camp practices are subject to short notice changes and adjustments based on weather and/or football operations decisions.

Tickets and parking information for the general public will be released at a later date.

Texans Withdraw Pursuit of Nick Caserio for General Manager Position

Houston Texans Chairman and CEO al McNair on Brian Gaine released a statement following the breakdown of talks between the Texans and Caserio.

The following is a statement from Houston Texans Chairman and CEO Cal McNair: “When we started the process to interview Nick Caserio for our EVP/GM position, we consulted the League office on numerous occasions, followed the procedures outlined in the League’s rules and believed we were in full compliance. We have now been made aware of certain terms in Nick’s contract with the Patriots. Once we were made aware of these contract terms, I advised Mr. Kraft that we would stop pursuing Nick.”

This article originally appeared in the Houston Forward Times

#NNPA BlackPress

Black Lives Matter Co-Founder and Black Futures Lab Release Second Black Census Report

NNPA CHEVROLET DTU FELLOWS — The analysis of responses from over 5,300 participants in the 2019 Black Census, demonstrate that police violence and impunity — and broader societal violence that targets the LGBTQ+ community — are also urgent concerns, showing a strong alignment with the non-LGBTQ+ identifying larger Black community.

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Alicia Garza's new report offers insight into the needs of Black LGBT+ communities. (Courtesy photo)

By Tedarius Abrams, Sharon Washington and Elae Hill, Washington Informer

According to a new report produced in part by Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza, Black lesbian, gay and bisexual Americans may be more concerned with everyday economic issues like low wages, unaffordable health care, and access to housing. More respondents identified these as higher priorities than marriage equality, though they strongly support laws enabling gay and lesbian couples to marry legally.

The analysis of responses from over 5,300 participants in the 2019 Black Census, demonstrate that police violence and impunity — and broader societal violence that targets the LGBTQ+ community — are also urgent concerns, showing a strong alignment with the non-LGBTQ+ identifying larger Black community.

“Too often, Black LGBTQ+ people are perceived as distinct and separate from the larger Black community and defined more by their sexual orientation than their race,” said Alicia Garza, principal at the Black Futures Lab and co-founder of Black Lives Matter. “In fact, LGBTQ+ respondents prioritize the same concerns as the rest of the Black community andface triple consciousness: violence and discrimination based not only on race but gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation.

“Black LGBTQ+ people often lose employment opportunities, access to housing and quality affordable health care because of how we identify. It is important for policymakers, activists and community groups to remember this and create an agenda that reflects that understanding when representing and serving Black LGBTQ+ people. Attending a gay wedding and changing your Facebook profile picture to a rainbow flag is great but it’s simply not enough.”

The report, “When the Rainbow Is Not Enough: LGBTQ+ Voices in the 2019 Black Census” examines the priorities and concerns of over 5,300 respondents to the 2019 Black Census who identify as gay, lesbian or bisexual or describe their sexual orientation as “other.”

The Black Census is the largest survey of Black people conducted in the United States since Reconstruction. The Black Futures Lab is publishing the findings of the census in a series of reports and briefs in partnership with Color of Change, Demos, and Socioanalítica Research.

“Black LGBTQ people hold in their very bodies the dual brunt of racism and discrimination based upon their sexual orientation and gender identity,” said K. Sabeel Rahman, President of Demos. “The day to day experience of economic insecurity, mistreatment by families and communities, combined with discrimination in housing, religion and even healthcare leaves many Black LGBTQ+ people locked out of economic opportunities and sometimes far removed from our democratic process. As this report shows, while Black LGB+ respondents know this, their pain and concerns are inexcusably left out of the conversation around what LGBTQ people need.”

A forthcoming report will explore the distinct concerns and experiences of Black Census respondents who identify as transgender, gender non-conforming, or identify their gender as “different” than male or female. Highlighting the findings of transgender and gender non-conforming individuals in their own report provides an opportunity to shine a spotlight on a community that is too often marginalized, even in discussions about LGBTQ+ people.

The Black Census Project launched in early 2018 with an ambitious agenda to poll tens of thousands of Black people on their political beliefs, frustrations and aspirations.

More Black Than Blue: Politics and Power in the 2019 Black Census, showed that respondents were strongly aligned with key Democratic policy priorities like closing significant gaps in quality of life through a living wage, quality public education, and healthcare, but that alignment did not translate to immediate, energetic support for the party or its candidates.

“Black people are vital members of every community we’re part of, whether placed-based, work-based or identity-based communities,” said Rashad Robinson, president of Color of Change, the nation’s largest online racial justice organization. “Neither our country’s Black communities nor our country’s LGBTQ communities will be fully understood, served or strengthened without Black LQBTQ people being heard and seen — counted and cared for. We have helped make Black communities what they are — and have helped make LGBTQ communities what they are. And we will always continue to. Our needs must be known. Thankfully, this report moves us in the right direction in terms of understanding all Black people much better.”

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Providence Opening Urgent Care Center

NNPA CHEVROLET DTU FELLOWS — “Providence will continue to work toward meeting patient needs and addressing the social factors that influence a person’s health,” said Tamarah Duperval-Brownlee, MD, MPH, MBA, President and Chief Executive Officer of Providence Health System and Chief Community Impact Officer for Ascension. “We look forward to serving our community by offering another way to access convenient, immediate medical care.”

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Residents remain unconvinced of Providence Health System's new urgent care center benefits. (Courtesy photo)

By Tedarius Abrams, Sharon Washington and Elae Hill, Washington Informer

As part of its transformation to better meet the needs of District residents, Providence Health System will soon offer urgent care services. The Providence Urgent Care Center will open on Tuesday, July 9, on the current campus of Providence and will operate seven days a week, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends. The Providence Urgent Care Center is the first ever urgent care center in Ward 5.

Providence Health System recently received certificate of need (CON) approval from the District’s State Health Planning and Development Agency (SHPDA) to operate urgent care services on its campus.

The Urgent Care Center will provide treatment for a wide range of common, non-emergency illnesses. These services range from treating those suffering from the flu, strep throat, or asthma, to the treatment of sprains, strains, and broken bones, along with offering vaccinations, radiology and other lab services.

“Providence will continue to work toward meeting patient needs and addressing the social factors that influence a person’s health,” said Tamarah Duperval-Brownlee, MD, MPH, MBA, President and Chief Executive Officer of Providence Health System and Chief Community Impact Officer for Ascension. “We look forward to serving our community by offering another way to access convenient, immediate medical care.”

The Urgent Care Center is just one part of Providence’s strategy to address unmet health needs of local residentsthrough its healthy village vision to create a community of healthcare and non-healthcare partners supporting the whole person and their well-being.

Still, many Washingtonians expressed reservations over what they termed the continued “displacement of natives” through an elimination of necessary services – including reasonably priced housing, late-hour public transportation, and full-capacity hospitals and emergency rooms.

“Elected officials believe that with the change in demographics they no longer need emergency services and full-service or full-capacity hospitals and emergency rooms,” Ward 5 resident Mel Prentiss told the Informer.  “The reality is that as the nation’s capital, D.C. holds the ominous position of being the target for all types of terror events.  Should something catastrophic happen here, how would the city and its officials handle the medical fallout?  Moving to preventative services and ‘urgent care’ facilities, does not meet those potential needs.”

A 2016 District of Columbia Community Health Needs Assessment found that 23.8 percent of adults did not have an identified primary care provider. It also found that 10 percent of District residents reported delays in getting medical care because they could not get a timely appointment. Providing urgent care services will help address these specific issues.

“Each ward should have basic needs and services readily available.  Even though I do not like the mayor shuttering Providence Hospital as it was originally designed, I do believe that an urgent care facility in Ward 5 could work well,” Shanice Graven said.  “The question is will this serve any real purpose that a Minute Clinic or other urgent care center could not.  How will it impact our communities, long term?  We will have to wait and see, so I will hold off on rash judgements until I see the proof of its benefit.”

Providence continues to operate primary care services, skilled nursing care at Carroll Manor, outpatient behavioral health, care coordination for Medicaid beneficiaries through the My Health GPS program, and a retail pharmacy with access to free medications to those who need it most.

To learn more about Providence’s transformation, go to ProvidenceHealthyVillage.org.

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Ebony, Jet fire remainder of staff, may close its doors for good

THE ATLANTA VOICE — Timeless editions of Ebony featured some of the biggest stars in Black America, including issues covered by Diana Ross, Sidney Poitier, as well as President & first lady Barack & Michelle Obama.

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(Photo: Ebony Magazine)

By Miana Massey, Chevrolet DTU Fellow | The Atlanta Voice

It’s official, Ebony Magazine—along with its sister publication Jet Magazine—has potentially closed its doors for good.

Former employees of the company took to Twitter last week using the hashtag #EbonyOwes to air out their frustrations with the company, as it has fired all of its employees with little to no notice.

According to USA Today, members of Ebony magazine’s digital team say they’ve been fired and haven’t received their final paychecks in the latest controversy to hit the struggling publication that has chronicled black life in America for decades.

Michael Gibson, co-chairman and founder of Austin, Texas-based Clear View Group, which owns Ebony, declined to comment to USA TODAY on the digital team’s dismissal, citing a “policy of not commenting on any employment practices or issues.”

The Chicago Tribune previously reported how Ebony was being pressed by the National Writers Union to pay more than $200,000 it alleged the magazine owed to freelance writers who contributed stories back in 2017. The drama sparked the hashtag #EbonyOwes on Twitter.

According to a report on Ebony.com, the magazine’s previous owner, Johnson Publishing Co., filed for bankruptcy liquidation in April, which Ebony said would not affect its operations.

“EBONY Media Operations, LLC brands, which include EBONY magazine, EBONY.com, digital magazine JET and jetmag.com and its related businesses, have viably operated independently of Johnson Publishing Company dba/ Fashion Fair Cosmetics (JPC) since Black-owned Ebony Media Operations, LLC (EMO) purchased the media assets of JPC in 2016. Black-owned investment firm CVG Group LLC assisted in the formation of EMO,” a statement read. “EMO is unaffected by the Chapter 7 bankruptcy announcement regarding the dissolution of JPC. EMO is not able to comment further and is not familiar with the facts or events of the JPC business.”

The first issue of the iconic magazine hit stands 74 years ago and took the industry by storm. Founded by John H. Johnson in November 1945, the black-owned publication has striven always to address African-American issues, personalities and interests in a positive and self-affirming manner.

Timeless editions of Ebony featured some of the biggest stars in Black America, including issues covered by Diana Ross, Sidney Poitier, as well as President & first lady Barack & Michelle Obama.

Despite the possibility that the world may lose this national treasure, fans of Ebony Magazine and its lasting impact believe it will remain a staple of the black community and an ultimate expression of black excellence.

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2019 NNPA DTU Journalism Fellowship

New LBCCD Facilities Director Named

PRECINCT REPORTER GROUP NEWS — The Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) has appointed Walter Johnson as the new Senior Director of Facilities Planning, Construction, and Operation. At Long Beach City College, Johnson will lead the Facilities Department that includes campus construction and renovation, building maintenance, grounds and landscaping, custodial services, transportation, and related services of all District facilities.

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Walter Johnson
By Precinct Reporter News

The Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) has appointed Walter Johnson as the new Senior Director of Facilities Planning, Construction, and Operation.

At Long Beach City College, Johnson will lead the Facilities Department that includes campus construction and renovation, building maintenance, grounds and landscaping, custodial services, transportation, and related services of all District facilities.

Prior to his appointment with LBCCD, he served for more than four years as the Senior Building Maintenance Supervisor at Berkeley Public Library in Berkeley. He has also served more than 10 years as the Director of Planning and Construction Management at Jackson State University in Mississippi. Throughout his 28-year career, Johnson has managed more than $800 million dollars in facilities and construction projects.

Johnson obtained his associate degree in Business Administration from Coahoma Junior College, and a bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Management from Jackson State University.

This article originally appeared in the Precinct Reporter Group News

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2019 NNPA DTU Journalism Fellowship

Family of latest DR victim fears ‘wrongful death’

DEFENDER NEWS NETWORK — Loved ones of the latest American tourist to be found dead in the Dominican Republic were demanding answers for what could be a “wrongful death.” A recent string of suspicious incidents have left dozens of people violently ill and caused nearly 10 lives to be lost on the Caribbean island nation in recent months.

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Joseph (Joe) Allen III (Source: The Allen Family)
By Defender News Service

Loved ones of the latest American tourist to be found dead in the Dominican Republic were demanding answers for what could be a “wrongful death.” A recent string of suspicious incidents have left dozens of people violently ill and caused nearly 10 lives to be lost on the Caribbean island nation in recent months.

Joseph (Joe) Allen III’s death last week came after he had recently gotten a clean bill of health from his doctor, Allen’s brother wrote in a letter on Monday. That fact only added to the mystery that caused the 55-year-old New Jersey man to die, a close friend told NewsOne.

“There’s something strange going on that needs to be investigated,” Tabari Sturdivant said in a phone conversation Tuesday morning.

Sturdivant, a 45-year-old filmmaker who lives in Atlanta and was not on the trip, said he was notified of Allen’s death from friends. He said he was sad for his friend’s family and was now unsure about his own pending travel plans to the Dominican Republic, where Allen reportedly regularly visited.

“I don’t believe in any conspiracy theories but there have got to be some answers,” he said. “We just need answers.”

Sturdivant’s concerns mirrored those of Allen’s brother, who told NewsOne in an email that he and his family “are afraid that my brother was a victim of a wrongful death.”

Allen arrived on June 9 to celebrate a friend’s birthday while staying at a hotel in Sosúa, a coastal town known for its beaches. He told friends he wasn’t feeling well Wednesday night and ended up staying in his room Wednesday night, His brother, Joe Allen, said. After his friends couldn’t reach him the following morning, the hotel opened his room door to find Allen dead.

“The maid opened the door, screamed, slammed the door,” Jason told NBC New York. “My brother is on the floor dead between his room and the bathroom.”

Jason went on to express his frustration with not being able to get many answers from Dominican and American authorities. Aside from not being able “to get anyone in the US Embassy to help us out,” Jason also said that Dominican laws were complicating Joe’s timely return to the United States.

“I was informed on Thursday that DR law mandates that all person from another country who die on Dominican soil must be autopsied immediately after his/her death,” Jason wrote in an email.

Joe’s son, Amir, traveled to the Dominican Republic on the day his father was found dead, Jason said. The two were supposed to be celebrating Father’s Day together. Instead, Amir was “pressured to sign a document authorizing my brother’s body to be embalmed in the Dominican Republic,” Jason wrote, adding that “Joe’s body would not be allowed to travel back to the States without undergoing the embalming process.”

Sturdivant said the cost to transport the remains from the Dominican Republic to the U.S. could be tens of thousands of dollars.

Allen’s family has “concerns about the Dominican government agencies involved and their willingness and/or capacity to investigate this situation properly,” Jason said in his email.

He was the ninth American tourist to die in the Dominican Republic in the past year and the eighth in recent months. Of those nine deaths, his was at least the fifth one for a Black person. Dozens of other tourists on vacation have reported becoming violently ill on their own trips. Coupled with separate reports of violence, including the attempted murder of Major League baseball legend David Ortiz, there seemed to be a bona fide crisis in the Dominican Republic — it just was unclear what to attribute it to.

Nearly all of the people who have suffered illnesses or died — many have called them victims — reportedly drank from the minibars where they stayed, which at first were mostly at hotels and resorts along the country’s east coast. In many of the cases, the common denominator seemed to be the Grand Bahia Principe resort in La Romana. But Allen’s death seemed to be the first that was reported to have happened in the northern part of the country.

Jason said he was at peace with that fact that his brother died, no matter how suddenly it was. However, it was the absence of answers that he couldn’t ignore, he told NBC New York.

“We want some closure to figure out what’s going on and why this is happening. And we don’t want anyone to feel how we’re feeling right now,” he said. “I don’t know who to blame. I’d rather not guess because you will drive yourself crazy with that but I do think something is off and I think it needs to be investigated no matter how much money or how much time it is.”

This article originally appeared in the Defender News Network

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GM Exec Touts Chevrolet’s DTU Fellowships and other Programs that Feature HBCUs

NNPA NEWSWIRE — “There are so many great men and women that are being developed and minds that are being cared for, cultivated inside of the schools and they don’t necessarily have the recruitment bandwidth and their career centers don’t have the relationships established to actually open up access to larger Fortune 500 companies,” Lester Booker, Jr., the project manager for communications operations at General Motors.

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Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr. and Lester Booker., the project manager for communications operations at General Motors touted the fourth year of the popular Discover the Unexpected Journalism Fellowship program (DTU) that was developed by Chevrolet in 2016 as an HBCU fellowship program.

By Stacy M. Brown, NNPA Newswire Correspondent
@StacyBrownMedia

During a fellowship luncheon and fireside chat at the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA) convention in Cincinnati, Lester Booker, Jr., the project manager for communications operations at General Motors explained to publishers and others why it’s important for the automaker and other Fortune 500 companies to invest in historically black colleges and universities (HBCUS).

“There are so many great men and women that are being developed and minds that are being cared for, cultivated inside of the schools and they don’t necessarily have the recruitment bandwidth and their career centers don’t have the relationships established to actually open up access to larger Fortune 500 companies,” Booker said.

“So, I think it is imperative that if we want to grab diverse talent, specifically in the African American community,” he said during the conversation with NNPA President and CEO Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., on Thursday, June 27 at the Cincinnati Westin Hotel.

Chavis and Booker touted the fourth year of the popular Discover the Unexpected Journalism Fellowship program (DTU) that was developed by Chevrolet in 2016 as an HBCU fellowship program.

“It’s purpose was to create and share optimistic stories while reinforcing the brand’s continued commitment to the African American community,” Booker said.

Chevrolet awards each of the six DTU fellows a $10,000 scholarship and a $5,000 stipend. The students form two teams of three people, and each team has access to an all-new 2019 Chevrolet Blazer during their reporting assignments.

Since 2016, Chevrolet has awarded in excess of $400,000 in scholarships and stipends in the annual program.

This year’s fellows are Elae Hill of North Carolina A&T; Sharon Joy Washington of Florida A&M; Tyla Barnes of Hampton University; Tedarius Abrams of Bethune-Cookman University; Emani Nichols of Morehouse College; and Miana Massey of Howard University.

The fellows will work this summer with NNPA member newspapers the Atlanta Voice, Chicago Crusader, Washington Informer, and Houston Forward Times.

The program includes a boot camp which Lester said immerses the fellows in “all things Chevrolet.”

They also meet leaders from Chevrolet and NNPA publishers.

“The program started with Howard University in 2016,” Booker said.

“We increased the reach of the program in 2017 to Spelman, Morehouse, Clark Atlanta …based on the overwhelming response, the online submission process was opened to all HBCU students in their sophomore through senior years with an interest in journalism, communications, mass media, or visual arts,” he said.

The fireside chat also included a video featuring DJ Envy, the famed disc jockey and music producer whose co-host of the popular syndicated radio show, “The Breakfast Club.’

Musician and author Fonzworth Bentley serves as the fellows’ Road Trip Advisor and both he and Envy are HBCU graduates.

“It’s definitely important for young African Americans to have time with influential leaders that they aspire to be like,” Booker said.

Since the DTU program’s establishment, Chavis said everyone has seen some of the best and brightest students.

Booker noted the success of Jordan Fisher, a 2017 graduate of Clark Atlanta whose began working for the media team on Stacey Abrams’ campaign for Georgia governor.

Fisher is currently a media manager and advisor for CNN political commentator and attorney Angela Rye’s political advocacy firm, IMPACT Strategies.

The program has also gained recognition by the Mosaic Awards panel which selected DTU as the winner of the Mosaic Award for Multicultural Online/Interactive Campaign.

The award recognizes campaigns that are executed primarily through interactive marketing targeted toward multicultural markets.

Booker said GM has other partnerships that reach HBCU audiences.

“Through our Corporate Giving efforts, we’ve provided financial support to both Howard University and North Carolina A&T,” he said.

General Motors also has several other partnerships that will include an AutoDrive Challenge and a Buick Come Up Challenge.

“General Motors is a member of the billion-dollar roundtable, and we have been involved as one of the 28 companies who spend $1 billion with diverse-owned companies,” Booker said.

“We have an HBCU White House partnership … we’ve actually participated in a conference and met with presidents of many HBCUs to talk about how to develop these pipelines of talent to make sure that we’re actually creating a pipeline of talent for entry-level positions,” he said.

To learn more about the DTU program, visit  www.nnpa.org/chevydtu

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