Empowerment Day 2016

Click above to see the full 2016 Empowerment Day Luncheon. Read below for some of the key stats from the #OpportunityForAll conversation.

It exploded in Baltimore, St. Louis and Charleston. It dominates political debates,
religious sermons, grocery store chatter, Tweets and posts.

And yet, what we don’t say about racism and intolerance should concern us the most.

Unspoken Franklin County realities like…

  • Seventy-two percent of those living in Columbus shelters are African American – almost one-third more than the already disproportionate 40% national average among the homeless.
  • In 2010, 71% of juveniles sent to justice institutions and 44% of those sentenced to state prisons were African American – from a county where 22% of residents are black.
  • About half of African American children live in poverty. Median household incomes earned by blacks total 20% 30% less than the overall median.

Isn’t it time we talked?

Starting with Empowerment Day 2016 and continuing through Empowerment Day 2017, your Columbus Urban League will host three critical constructive conversations about race.

We will invite thoughtful introspection and call the question: What changes are needed to offer real opportunities for all? 

Uncover the truth behind the numbers. What role does racism play in who goes to jail, who lives on the street and who is stuck in poverty?

Our moderator, radio and television analyst Jeff Johnson, will challenge our thinking and our panel of experts: author and activist Michelle Alexander (criminal justice); Community Shelter Board President Michelle Heritage (homelessness); and Ohio Department of Job and Family Services Director Cynthia Dungey (economic opportunity).

Together, we can foster a stronger community, one that lives out the principles of justice and equity and realizes a significant benefit from everyone’s talents.


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