New marker commemorates Black neighborhood

WARNER ROBINS, Ga. — A thriving Black community established in the 1940s for African American workers at Robins Air Force Base has been commemorated with a historic marker.

The new plaque in Warner Robins — unveiled last month — celebrates the Jody Town Community, a segregated neighborhood that became a hub for Black life in the area before an urban renewal plan in the 1970s led to its destruction, The Telegraph newspaper reports.

“Jody Town was more than a neighborhood,” Shirlyn Johnson-Granville, chair of the Jody Town Community Reunion Committee, told the newspaper. “It was a community. We had businesses. We had churches. We had organizations. We had entertainment.”

Johnson-Granville recalled going to an ice cream shop in the neighborhood and learning how to sew and bake cookies with her Girl Scout troop there. The Dodgers scouted players at a park where the Warner Robins Jets baseball team played, she said.

But an urban renewal project in the 1970s supported by a federal grant displaced residents and brought down buildings. The neighborhood disappeared.

Johnson-Granville called the marker “a symbol of what our ancestors did in the past.”

“And we hope it’ll be a symbol for hope and future generations to just know that they can be all they can be as our ancestors and elders thought for us,” she said.

The marker is the latest addition to the Georgia Civil Rights Trail, an initiative led by the Georgia Historical Society that aims to commemorate key events during the Civil Rights movement.

— The Associated Press

Black drivers likeliest to be stopped in Virginia

NORFOLK, Va. — A newspaper’s analysis of state data shows that across Virginia, Black drivers are the only racial or ethnic group stopped by police at a higher rate than their share of the population.

Black drivers in Hampton Roads and across Virginia were also more likely to be stopped and searched by police than any other racial or ethnic group, according to The Virginian-Pilot’s analysis of data recently released as part of a law enacted by the General Assembly in 2020.

The Virginia Community Policing Act requires police to collect and report information on every traffic stop they conduct.

While Black people make up about 20% of the state’s population, Black drivers accounted for about 31% of traffic stops statewide, according to the data. White drivers made up 63% of stops statewide; white people are 69% of the population.

Several Hampton Roads police agencies told the newspaper they regularly review data, including traffic stops, as a way to monitor and improve their practices.

— The Associated Press

Harris negative for COVID after possible exposure

Vice President Kamala Harris tested negative for COVID-19 following a meeting with Texas state House Democrats, several of whom later tested positive, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Monday.

An official in the vice president’s office said that Harris’ testing occurred before her “routine doctor’s appointment” at Walter Reed Hospital, not because of the meeting with Texas legislators.

Asked whether there was a safety concern related to Harris’ time spent around President Joe Biden, Psaki told reporters at Monday’s press briefing that the vice president was tested and “there was no detection of Covid-19.”

“We take these precautions incredibly seriously and abide by the health, the guidance of our health and medical experts.”

Psaki wouldn’t assess what safety precautions the Texas Democrats may or may not have taken.

— CNN

Top Nevada officials discuss racial injustice, policing

NORTH LAS VEGAS, Nev. — Top Nevada law enforcement officers said at a community forum Saturday that they are committed to diversifying their staff and have had them undergoing implicit bias training but they faced tough questions, pushback and protests from members of the audience.

Republican candidate for governor and Clark County Sheriff Joe Lombardo, Attorney General Aaron Ford, and Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson said at the panel organized by the local chapter of the NAACP that they’ve also worked to build bridges between law enforcement agencies and the communities they’re supposed to protect and serve.

As the panel discussed their policies and procedures and the way complaints from residents are handled, they were met with interruptions and objections from some in the crowd, including a group protesting the Las Vegas police killing of a man who carried guns and wore body armor while facing off with officers during racial justice protests last June.

The panelists, which also included U.S. Homeland Security Special Agent in Charge Francisco Burrola, FBI Special Agent in Charge Aaron Rouse and acting U.S. Attorney for Nevada Christopher Chiou, described how residents can make complaints to their offices. They also outlined their efforts to bolster relationships with communities of color. Most of them serve on or send representatives to a monthly multicultural advisory committee, where law enforcement officials meet with community members.

— The Associated Press

5 Black women start real

estate syndicate

During the throes of the Coronavirus Pandemic, Georgia State Representative Dar’Shun Kendrick had an idea to help people raise capital, with the hopes of generating Black wealth.

Kendrick, an attorney by trade, is an expert in raising capital. After much thought, Kendrick had a call with a dozen individuals. After the call, four remaining Black women were interested in her idea. What resulted was the formation of Dollar Empowered Community, LLC (D.E.C.), a real estate syndicate with five principals each residing in DeKalb County.

“I said, ‘if you’re interested in joining this journey with me, it’s going to be hard, it’s going to be frustrating and it’s going to be long. But if you really believe in this and want to join me and reap the rewards, then let me know,’” Kendrick said. “And it was all women. Well, it was men on the call, they didn’t rise to the occasion why it’s all Black women, we had white people on call, they just didn’t rise to the occasion.”

Joining Kendrick is Teresa Hardy who serves as the D.E.C.’s CFO and she also serves as the Dekalb County CEO of the NAACP. Plus, Edwina Clanton who serves as Chair of the Stonecrest Business Alliance, Stacey Thibodeaux who serves as the D.E.C.’s secretary, and lastly, Amy McCoy who is the founder and Broker of My Hometown Realty Group.

The D.E.C. hosts private and informative discussions on building cash flow, community investment strategies, and capital asset appreciation.

— The Atlanta Voice

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