The Fierce


of Now

The Institute seeks to ensure that urban residents live in a society that respects their humanity, provides equality of economic opportunity, empowers them to use their voice in the political process, and protects equal justice.



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In the News

America’s Original Sin and its Vestiges Belong to its States - Including N.J.

August 19, 2019

Institute President and CEO Ryan Haygood writes for

Four hundred years ago this month, Black people arrived in Jamestown, brought to America as captives.

The issue of America’s original sin and its lasting stain have led to a national conversation about reparations this anniversary year, with people asking who is responsible, for how long, and what to do about it.

But the reparations conversation must occur at the state level, too, with each state confronting its historical role in American slavery, as well as the modern day vestiges that continue to harm descendants of enslaved Black people, while simultaneously conferring advantages to the descendants of that system’s beneficiaries.

In doing so, we must acknowledge the direct line from American slavery to today’s system of voter suppression, racial wealth disparities, mass incarceration, and racial segregation.

Report Urges NJ To Spend More On Keeping Kids Out Of Jail

August 09, 2019

New Jersey 101.5 reports

New Jersey has increased the amount spent on incarcerating youth by 370% in the last two decades. Over the same time period, state funding on efforts meant to keep kids out of prison, or from returning once they're released, has increased by only 50%.

LTE: You Matter. Be Counted. Everyone Counts. New Jersey 2020 Census

August 09, 2019

Mercer Me reports:

As someone who values the voice our democracy gives us, I appreciate the Hopewell Township Committee’s resolution passed at its June 3 meeting in support of an accurate 2020 Census count. The next decennial census begins on April 1, 2020 (No fooling!).

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