News

NJTV Livestream: A Conversation on Social Justice with New Jersey's Gubernatorial Candidates

On May 1, 2017, the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center and the NAACP New Jersey State Conference presented, "A Conversation on Social Justice with New Jersey's Gubernatorial Candidates," moderated by Elise Boddie, institute board member and Rutgers University professor of law, and Michael Hill, award-winning NJTV News correspondent. The forum featured gubernatorial candidates from the Democratic, Republican and Green parties: Bill Brennan (D), Jim Johnson (D), Raymond Lesniak (D), Seth Kaper-Dale (D), Phil Murphy (D), Steven Rogers (R), Hirsh Singh (R), John Wisniewski (D) and Mark Zinna (D).

Ryan P. Haygood: How will next governor handle state's racial disparities?

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Institute President and CEO Ryan P. Haygood writes in the Star Ledger:

Fifty years ago this month, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., looked to Newark and other urban communities and explained that the country consisted of "two Americas," divided by race.

King explained that, in one America, "millions of young people grow up in the sunlight of opportunity," with the ability to realize their full potential.

But in the "other America," people "find themselves perishing on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity."

Fifty years later, perhaps no other city embodies both the reality of the two Americas and the possibility of bridging these entrenched divides more than the mighty city of Newark, New Jersey's largest city... 

The New Jersey Institute for Social Justice, NJPAC, and the NAACP New Jersey State Conference Hosts A Conversation on Social Justice with New Jersey's Gubernatorial Candidates on May 1

On Monday, May 1, 2017 at 6:30 pm, the Institute, the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, and the NAACP New Jersey State Conference will present, A Conversation on Social Justice with New Jersey's Gubernatorial Candidates, moderated by Elise Boddie, Institute Board member and Rutgers University Professor of Law, and Michael Hill, award-winning NJTV anchor and correspondent. The forum will feature gubernatorial candidates Bill Brennan, Jim Johnson, Raymond Lesniak, Seth Kaper-Dale, Phil Murphy, Steven Rogers, Hirsh Singh, John Wisniewski, and Mark Zinna.

"Our cities hold real promise for addressing some of the greatest social and racial justice challenges of our time: income inequality, unequal access to education, a broken criminal justice system, voter suppression, and systems that deny dignity and human rights,"  said Ryan P. Haygood, Institute President and CEO. “Just one month ahead of the primary election, this forum will provide an important opportunity for the gubernatorial candidates to share how they will address these critical issues."

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Star Ledger: Newark residents don't get fair share of local jobs, report says

The Star Ledger reports:

A report by a social justice group found that, despite Newark's highly touted renaissance, residents hold fewer than one-fifth of all jobs in the city, while the jobs they do hold tend to be at the low end of the pay scale.

Observer: Baraka Launching ‘Newark 2020’ Jobs Program

Observer reports:

Baraka announced the Newark 2020 initiative today following the release of a new report by the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice that found a wide economic disparity between the city’s residents and the large corporate workforce that commutes in and out of Newark every day.

Newark residents hold 18 percent of the jobs in the city, a low rate compared with other cities of similar size across the country, according to the report, and although the population is majority black and Latino, 60 percent of the city workforce is white...

WNYC: Most Jobs in Newark Go to Non-Residents

WNYC reports:

A report made public Tuesday by the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice reveals a Newark that excludes its own residents from the burgeoning revitalization happening around them. Of the nearly 140,000 jobs in the city, Newark residents hold just 18 percent of the positions. And of those workers, only 10 percent earn at least $40,000 a year.

 

The New Jersey Institute for Social Justice Releases A New Report that Seeks to Bridge Dr. King’s “Two Americas”

Newark, New Jersey, April 25, 2017 --  Today, the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice (the “Institute”) released a new report, “Bridging the Two Americas: Employment & Economic Opportunity in Newark & Beyond.” Please click here to read the report, here to read the policy brief, and here to read the two-page fact sheet.

“Fifty years ago this month, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., looked to Newark and other urban communities and explained that the country consisted of ‘two Americas,’ divided by race,” said Ryan P. Haygood, Institute President and CEO. “Fifty years later, perhaps no other city embodies both the reality of the two Americas and the possibility of bridging these entrenched divides more than the city of Newark. On one hand, as a testament to Newark’s economy, the majority of the people employed here earn more than $40,000 each year. But the poverty rate for Black residents of Newark is a striking 33 percent, more than double the national average for all races. This is part of a broader, troubling picture: Newark residents, incredibly, hold only 18 percent of all jobs in the city. As our report explains, our cities hold incredible promise to advance progressive solutions to finally bridging the two Americas. The solutions to the enduring problem of economic inequality will have to come from the ground up in our cities.”

Brennan and the Institute Release "An Agenda for a New Democracy"

Civil Rights Groups Call for Voting Reforms to Boost Democratic Participation in New Jersey

Changes Would Make it Easier to Register, Provide Opportunities for Early Voting, and Expand Access for Formerly Incarcerated Individuals

After one of the most divisive and racially-charged presidential elections in recent history, New Jersey lawmakers have an opportunity to promote an inclusive democratic process that maximizes participation from all of its residents, says a new report released by the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice and the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law.

An Agenda for a Renewed Democracy in New Jersey” recommends three actions the New Jersey legislature can take to safeguard the voting rights of its residents, in particular Black voters: implement automatic voter registration, restore voting rights to residents with past criminal convictions who are living in the community, and set minimum early voting requirements.

The New Jersey Institute for Social Justice Welcomes the Inaugural Judge Debevoise Social Justice Legal Advocacy Fellow

Today, the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice welcomes Scott Novakowski as Associate Counsel and the inaugural Judge Dickinson R. Debevoise Social Justice Legal Advocacy Fellow.

“Scott joins the Institute at a critical moment when our work in building an inclusive democracy, ensuring economic justice, and advocating for transformative criminal justice reform couldn’t be more important," said Ryan P. Haygood, Institute President and CEO. “We are clear here at the Institute that the solutions to the greatest social justice challenges of our time will come from the ground up in our cities. We are honored to have Scott join our team to help fight for the solutions that Judge Debevoise dedicated his career to achieving.” 

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101.5: Most in NJ don't want to see kids get locked up

101.5 reports:

Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg of the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice says 85 percent of the 500 New Jerseyans polled agreed that the youth justice system should focus on prevention and rehabilitation, rather than locking up juvenile offenders...Weill-Greenberg said it costs New Jersey $200,000 annually to house one juvenile inmate: “This is a policy that has really failed us on a moral footing, as well as a fiscal footing.”