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Grassroots Illinois Action
Quick Hit
by Michael Joyce
2:00pm
Mon May 23, 2016

Housing Activists March Through Logan Square In Protest Of Gentrification

The voices of the displaced were heard throughout Logan Square on Saturday as demonstrators shouted and chanted over a bed of drums and shakers, calling on Ald. Joe Moreno (1st) to stop the gentrification of the neighborhood.

Local advocacy groups Somos Logan Square, Centro Autonomo and Grassroots Illinois Action came together for an action titled, "Our Neighborhood is Not for Sale."

The march started outside Moreno's office, located at 2740 W. North Ave., and eventually moved on to the nearby Twin Towers development.

Antonio Gutierrez, development coordinator of Centro Autonomo's housing project, says such actions are necessary because the alderman refuses to establish a dialogue with advocacy groups.

"We have tried to set up meetings, as we saw today [when] we went to his office," said Gutierrez. "They just looked out, locked the door. They didn't invite us in. That's what we're seeing with Joe Moreno, a closed-door policy."

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
5:25pm
Tue Feb 23, 2016

Candidates In 2nd Senate District Clash On Charter Schools, Progressive Credentials

Progress Illinois previews the Democratic primary race between Angelica Alfaro and Omar Aquino, who are competing for the Illinois Senate seat being vacated by retiring state Sen. William Delgado (D-Chicago).

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
11:30am
Fri Mar 20, 2015

Chicago 16th Ward Candidate Responds To Residency Questions, Criticism Over Ownership Of 'Unsafe' Vacant Home

South Side aldermanic candidate Stephanie Coleman, who's vying for the Chicago City Council's 16th Ward seat, is taking heat over an "unsafe" vacant home she owns with her father in Englewood. 

Questions are also being raised over whether Coleman is truly a "lifelong 16th Ward resident," as she claims.

Coleman's campaign, however, says critics are "making false claims" against the 27-year-old aldermanic candidate and are "trying to deflect from real neighborhood issues."

Coleman, who bills herself as a "daughter of Englewood," is set to go head-to-head with progressive Ald. Toni Foulkes (15th) in the 16th Ward's aldermanic runoff contest on April 7. The 16th Ward, which covers the Chicago Lawn, Englewood, Gage Park and West Englewood neighborhoods, was previously represented by Ald. JoAnn Thompson, who died suddenly of heart failure on February 9. Foulkes is running in the 16th Ward as a result of the ward remap. The 15th ward was previously a predominantly black ward, but is now majority Latino following the 2012 remapping process.  

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
3:13pm
Tue Dec 2, 2014

Chicago City Council Approves $13 Minimum Wage, Worker Advocates Applaud

Chicago's minimum wage will go up gradually to $13 an hour by 2019 under a mayor-backed plan that cleared the full city council by a 44-5 vote at a special meeting Tuesday. Progress Illinois provides highlights from the council debate and vote.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
12:32pm
Mon Oct 13, 2014

Chicagoans Push For Ward-Level Ballot Referendums On Elected School Board (VIDEO)

Although a citywide advisory referendum asking Chicagoans whether they support switching to an elected school board has been crowded off the ballot for a third time, education activists have a backup plan.

Parents, teachers and community groups are banding together to place a separate, non-binding question about an elected Chicago Board of Education on the February municipal ballot in each of the city's 50 wards. The coalition, which is unhappy with the policies endorsed by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel's handpicked school board, officially launched their ward-level referendum drive on Monday.

"While the mayor makes his moves by squashing democracy and disrespecting parents, we will make our moves by knocking on doors and by giving the people [the ability] to do the one thing the mayor's afraid of. We are going to give people the chance to vote for an elected school board," Action Now's Executive Director Katelyn Johnson said at the referendum drive's kick off, held in front of Ronald E. McNair Elementary School in the city's Austin neighborhood. (Back in April, the Chicago Board of Education voted to "turnaround" McNair, which involves firing and replacing all school staffers, to improve its academic performance.)