Mayor Michael A. Nutter (Philadelphia, PA) After serving almost 15 years in the Philadelphia City Council, Michael A. Nutter was elected the 98th Mayor of his hometown in November 2007 and took office in January 2008. At his inaugural address, Mayor Nutter pledged to lower crime, improve educational attainment rates, make Philadelphia the greenest city […]
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African American Mayors Association Statement on the Deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile
(Washington, DC), On behalf of the 500 African American mayors across the country, Mayor Sly James of Kansas City, MO and President of the African American Mayors Association, released the following statement in response to the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile:
“Alton Sterling was a father of five and husband. Philando Castile was a beloved son. But, most of all, both of these men were human beings, and Americans, whose lives were cut short. Any time someone dies violently and a family member is lost, it is a tragedy and our hearts and minds go out to the family.
From Baltimore to Baton Rouge to Falcon Heights, mayors are at the forefront of working with police officials to ensure transparency in cases involving police shootings and call for thorough investigation and the earliest possible release of information. The African American Mayors Association commends the U.S. Department of Justice for its swift decision to launch a civil rights investigation into the Alton Sterling case, and hopes that similar, swift action is also taken in the Philando Castile case. We offer our support to the Mayors of Baton Rouge and Falcon Heights as they lead their cities through this challenging time.
The African American Mayors Association is committed to improving communication and trust between law enforcement and the citizens they are meant to serve and protect. We are likewise committed to police officer training on methods of de-escalation and disengagement for situations where the use of deadly force is unwarranted. We will continue this work, more committed than ever, to make our towns and cities safe for everyone.”
Coalition of Black Mayors Applauds Supreme Court for Affirming Women’s Right to Make Their Own Health Decisions
(Washington, DC), On behalf of the 500 African American mayors across the country, Mayor Vivian Covington, University Park, IL and Chairwomen of the African American Mayors Association’s Women Mayors Committee, released the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s decision on abortion rights this week:
“The African American Mayors Association applauds the Supreme Court for reaffirming the constitutional right to safe and legal abortion in their Whole Women’s Health v. Hellerstedt decision. Whether they live in a bustling urban center or far-off rural town, women’s ability to exercise that right must be unconditional. This is especially true for the millions of African American women who live in our cities and the families that love and depend on them. While women with means have the ability to get health care when and where they need it, many of our citizens face disadvantages that lead to second class care. Everyone deserves access to reproductive healthcare, no matter their zip code. This week, the Supreme Court has ensured that, unequivocally.”
Mayor Sly James of Kansas City, MO and President of the African American Mayors Association, added the following:
“Although the Whole Women’s Health decision was a majority, cases like these remind us what’s at stake for the American people. It is an unavoidable reality that the decisions the Supreme Court makes, impacts the healthcare and reproductive freedom of millions. For more than 100 days, that Court has not operated at full capacity. That is simply unacceptable. Therefore, in the wake of this week’s case, the African American Mayors Association once again calls on Congress to stop gambling with the fate of American citizens, #DoYourJob, and confirm Judge Merrick Garland.”
Newark, NJ –- June 13, 2016 — Mayor Ras J. Baraka and the City of Newark’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning Commission will hold a vigil in honor of the victims of yesterday morning’s mass shooting in Orlando, tonight, Monday, June 13, at 6 p.m., on the front steps of City Hall, located at 920 Broad Street.
49 people were killed and at least 53 wounded by a shooter in an Orlando nightclub frequented by that City’s gay community early yesterday morning. The shooter was killed by police. The incident was the largest mass shooting in American history. According to investigators, the suspected shooter had declared allegiance to ISIS, suffered from mental issues, but was still able to acquire an AR-15 assault rifle, which he apparently used in the massacre.
Mayor Baraka issued an attached statement denouncing the shooting for its violence, and assailed bigotry, homophobia, gun violence, and the accessibility of assault rifles to unstable and dangerous people. He called upon residents to join in the vigil.
In addition to the vigil, flags at City Hall are to be flown at half-mast today in solidarity with the rest of the country.
Who: Mayor Ras J. Baraka
City of Newark LGBTQ Commission
What: Will hold a vigil to honor the victims of yesterday morning’s mass shooting in Orlando, Florida.
When: Monday, June 13
Where: City Hall Front Steps
920 Broad Street
MEDIA NOTES: Media parking will be available in streets and lots in the neighborhood.
For more information, contact the Press Information Office – (973) 733-8004.
For more information on the City of Newark, please visit our website at www.ci.newark.nj.us
Follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/cityofnewarknj
MAYOR RAS J. BARAKA’S STATEMENT ON VIGIL
FOR ORLANDO SHOOTING VICTIMS
“Tonight, with the support of our LGBTQ Commission, the City of Newark and its diverse and united people will respond with love and prayer for the victims in Orlando by holding a vigil on the steps of City Hall. I urge all of Newark to join me at this vigil in sending our condolences and support to the victims, and a firm message to the world: Newark stands opposed to gun violence, homophobia, and bigotry.
“Early yesterday morning this nation saw one of the bloodiest mass shooting incidents in American history, which has left 50 dead, many more gravely wounded, families devastated, and a country in shock again. This ghastly horror is the result of many things – bigotry, the accessibility of assault rifles to unstable and dangerous people, homophobia, and appalling divisions and splinterings in our country that are making it impossible to reach unity. The result is pain and suffering, all of it utterly unnecessary and preventable.
“How many more lives must be needlessly lost before Congress takes action to impose even the most basic, common sense, and bipartisan reforms on the sale and distribution of guns? I call upon the Congress to respond to this horror with actions, not words, with legislation, not rhetoric. When will enough truly be enough? I have ordered the flags at Newark City Hall to be flown at half-mast in solidarity with the rest of the country.”
– NEWARK –
Washington, D.C. (June 13, 2016) — The African American Mayors Association (AAMA) joins the nation in mourning yesterday’s tragic mass shooting at the Orlando, Florida Pulse nightclub which claimed at least fifty lives.
The tragedy took place during LGBT Pride Month, which commemorates the successes and struggles of LGBT Americans. America’s mayors have been at the forefront of advancing LGBT rights, enacting LGBT nondiscrimination ordinances and human rights laws decades before legal protections were established at the state or federal level. Even today, as multiple states seek to turn back the clock on recent US Supreme Court decisions advancing LGBT equality, mayors continue to lead the fight to uphold the dignity of all residents.
According to press reports, the shooter in yesterday’s tragedy was able to acquire a military-grade firearm despite numerous red flags in his background. While solutions for confronting gun violence will vary, AAMA mayors are united in their resolve for action to eliminate senseless gun violence deaths.
Our mayors are actively responding to the Orlando tragedy in their communities. AAMA President Sly James (Kansas City, MO) has declared today a “Rainbow Day” in his city, urging Kansas City residents to wear rainbows and illuminating many local landmarks in rainbow colors in solidarity with the victims. In a local press interview, he further noted: “I don’t care how you look at it, slice it or dice it, weapons [are] in the hands of idiots, haters, bigots and fools. People will die. We have to stop it.”