Milwaukee County Board Passes Measure Calling for Creation of an Office on African American Affairs
Resolution by Supervisor Khalif Rainey Seeks to Identify and Address Issues In the African American Community
The Office on African American Affairs would include as its objectives: the examination and definition of issues central to the rights and needs of African Americans; recommendations for changes in programs and laws that disproportionately impact African Americans; development and implementation of policies, plans, and programs related to the special needs of African Americans; and promotion of equal opportunities for African Americans.
The Office is designed to investigate and address issues concerning the African American community, including:
- Health metrics
- Food deserts
- Issues affecting young people and children
- Affordable housing
- The disproportionately high numbers of African Americans in the prison system
- Small business creation
“This is only a first step, but it’s an important first step in addressing the issues affecting the African American community,” Rainey said. “It is not a panacea, but it is an initial step toward making Milwaukee County a better place for African Americans.”
The Board’s Committee on Finance, Personnel, and Audit has already approved a measure that will provide $300,000 in funding for the office. County Executive Chris Abele has 45 days to create the office, and the Board passed an amendment urging him to place the office in the independent Office of the Comptroller.
“I believe this measure could be a model for other communities across the country,” Rainey said. “Milwaukee County is notorious overall as a place that is not good for African Americans. But Milwaukee is not alone. I hope we can become a model for African American advancement and that other communities follow our lead so that African Americans across the country can live better lives.”
Press Releases by Khalif Rainey
Statement of Alderman Khalif J. Rainey September 26, 2016
The staffing makeup of the Office of African American Affairs will be determined in 2017 budget discussions.
Statement of Alderman Khalif J. Rainey July 22, 2016
The measure directs the Department of City Development to study the problem of food deserts in Milwaukee and put together a list of potential solutions.
“If we are united we can stand together and bring positive change to Milwaukee.”