New Orleans Jan 30th, 2016
Children travel 6 and even more hours on the bus per day to get to and from school in neighborhoods far away from their homes. A Community Voice has been working with members of the Orleans Parish School Board to reopen Armstrong School in the Lower 9th Ward to accommodate the over 500-student wait list at MLK Elementary School in the Lower 9th Ward.
A Community Voice :
- An end to bus stops waits with no shelters for children that start before light and end after dark, in blighted and crime ridden areas.
- That the City provide a school for the current and future 1300* families/residents, especially due to a consequence of high building activities from: *Perez (297 units), Make it Right (200), city/federal programs (100), other nonprofit actions (100), the consistent number of returning families (300), and the will of parents who were former residents of the lower 9 who wish their children to attend school in the lower 9th ward (300).
- an end to the One-App forced busing of students that replaces slots at local schools with children from other areas, most who wish to attend school in their own areas.
- the beginning of a “neighborhood children based” school devoted to the music and culture of the lower 9th ward, and Louis Armstrong.
Invited: Sheriff Marlin Gusman, Congressman Richmond, Mayor Landrieu, City Councilmembers At Large Jason Williams, Stacy Head and District E James Gray, School Board Members John Brown and Nolan Marshall, State Senator JP Morrell, State Reps Austin Badon, Jimmy Harris and Joe Bouie, as well as candidates for office in the Dem. Party election March, 2016.
Return New Orleans Children to Schools in Their Neighborhood Governed by Our Elected Board
We, the citizens of the New Orleans community, applaud your election as our governor. We appreciate your stand for public education and acknowledge your support for HB 166, which would have returned successful schools to our Orleans Parish School Board. At the same time, the presence of Leslie Jacobs on the K-12 Education Committee reminds us of the past harms, the firing of thousands of teachers after Katrina, and the present harms that our community has suffered at the hands of market-based education reform. We believe the following changes will make our community whole:
- All our schools are returned to our elected school board.
- Children are able to attend neighborhood schools.
- Students are not forced to ride unmonitored buses from as early as 5:30 AM to as late as 6 PM.
- The millions of dollars currently diverted to bus companies are returned to our schools.
We look forward to supporting you as you use the remedies available to you to correct these injustices.
Sign the petition on Change.org
Call A Community Voice at 800-239-7379 for petitions or email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you would like to help on this campaign, please download the flyer and the petition below to pass out in your neighborhood, church or workplace.
A Community Voice is hosting a Housing, Community, & Job Fair for residents to get FREE information on:
- Job Opportunities
- Affordable Housing Programs
- Available Loan and Grant Opportunities
Visit many of the vendor tables at the Fair for a safe trick or treating experience for families this Halloween.
- A Community Voice will provide information on the Homebuyer Training Program and credit counseling to help residents qualify for bond money and down payment and closing cost assistance;
- Louisiana Workforce will have information on available jobs and training programs;
- First Federal Bank will be on hand to provide information on loan and banking opportunities;
- City of Lake Charles and Calcasieu Parish Police Jury will have information on housing assistance, grants and rehab programs;
This fair is only held once a year so spread the word! Flyer of Event!
“When the storm came through, it opened my eyes,” Vanessa Gueringer, a civil rights activist and vice president of A Community Voice, a nonprofit organization in New Orleans’ Upper Ninth Ward, said at a recent event. “Our neighborhoods should look like any other neighborhood. All babies deserve a healthy start, no matter the zip code.”
NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — All you have to do is take a quick spin around the area of Feliciana and Law streets in the Ninth Ward and you’ll understand why neighbors there are mad.
There’s a boat that hasn’t been on the water since the day Hurricane Katrina struck. You’ll find tree houses — that aren’t supposed to be tree houses — with branches stretching out of the roof and windows. But you’ll also find people who have repaired and raised their homes, hoping the neighborhood will bounce back better than ever.
Check out the gallery below and see if you would feel comfortable investing your own money in the area. You’ll see photos of people who are taking a chance on the neighborhood as well as the battle they’re facing.
The New Orleans Advocate
Some of their ire was directed at the city, which they said should take a firmer hand in cleaning up overgrown properties, including the land bordering a nearby railyard. Many of those lots are overgrown with weeds and strewn with dumped items.
As the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina approaches, some said, their part of the Upper 9th Ward still feels far from recovered.
“We’re hearing these reports about how everything is going so swell,” said Debra Campbell, chairwoman of the Upper 9th Ward chapter of the nonprofit group A Community Voice. “But let’s be truthful. It’s going swell in SOME areas.”
Ancar, who lives just down Law Street from the park, said she frets constantly about snakes, rats and raccoons hiding in the overgrown lots near her house.
The city lists several code violations at Ancar’s own property. She fumed that she was targeted for enforcement even though other nearby lots feature violations as egregious as a small boat, which she says was dumped there about two months ago.
Elsewhere nearby are overgrown lots on Montegut Street bordering Norfolk Southern’s Oliver Yard Terminal, houses in varying states of collapse, and pitted roads that threaten to damage cars that venture on them.
City spokesman Brad Howard said the Landrieu administration has invested heavily in New Orleans Recreation Development Commission programming citywide.
“While Odile Davis Park has been heavily vandalized and repairs would cost the city a substantial amount of capital funding, NORDC is committed to working with community partners, neighborhood associations and the Upper 9th Ward community to rebuild and sustain a safe space for children and families to learn, play and grow,” Howard said.
Sitting in the bleachers at the park, Anthony Martin, 31, said that before Katrina, it was a hub for neighborhood youth. He hopes to see more recreation programming in the park. Short of that, he said, the city could keep the park’s lights on at night to provide local children a safer place to play.
“From my recollection and experience, the park saved a lot of lives,” Martin said. “If there were more activity in the park, I know crime would decrease.”
Across the street from the park at the intersection of Montegut and Law streets occurred another sign of the Upper 9th Ward’s shaky recovery — a murder on April 24.
About noon that day, Marcel Coleman, 20, was found shot to death in an empty lot. He was covered in blood and not wearing shoes or pants.
New Orleans Police Department spokesman Tyler Gamble said the investigation into Coleman’s murder is active, but he had no news on any suspects.
Gamble said that besides that April killing, the area around Odile Davis Playground has not seen a recent surge in crime.
He encouraged concerned residents to come to police-community meetings.
“We’re open to working with them and addressing any kinds of concerns they have,” he said.
Upper 9th Ward A Community Voice members rallied to fight for Blight clean-up at a neighborhood park
Odile Davis Park at 3000 Law Street corner of Montegut and Law Streets
Site of two murders this year, cars are burned, homes regularly burglarized, wheels stolen from cars, wide open drains with covers are missing, huge holes in the streets, an abandoned boat from Katrina rests and the CSX railroad has created a mile of overgrown rat and crime harborage.
“The Upper 9th ward is still struggling to come back since H. Katrina” states Debra Campbell, Chairperson of the Upper 9th Ward A Community Voice chapter. “We cannot afford to pretend that letting one area of the city die won’t affect the whole city. A Community Voice 9th Ward members meet monthly to work on strategies to save the neighborhood and have recently won restoration of street lights on the France/Poland St overpass, so we are a CAN-DO organization and will fight for a clean-up here.”
The residents and churches that have returned in the Montegut/Feliciana area between Galvez and Law need:
- serious enforcement of the law, including regular community policing patrols and investigations of crimes by Police,
- enforcement of code violations by the City Health Dept., including fines to CSX Railroad for their length of uncut grass and jungle conditions along Montegut St.,
- street repairs
- and clean-up of area blighted lots, including another home for the Katrina abandoned boat.