WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 5, 2014, High Ground News
"Disengaged is the new disenfranchised" was the recurring exclamation at last week's The State of Black Memphis event, an annual symposium hosted by the Memphis Urban League Young Professionals (MULYP) and sponsored by The Redwing Group.
The event, held Monday evening at the National Civil Rights Museum, began with a report on the current conditions of Memphis through a compilation of data -- the "equality index" of Black America measuring multiple factors, from economics and education to health and civic engagement. Comparing national data and highlighted Memphis data, the presentation sought to introduce core issues that affect urban professionals of color throughout the greater area of Memphis.
The next step was to propose and strategize possible results. The hope, according to MULYP, is to challenge the organization and the community to seek and generate thought provoking ideas on ways to improve the communities moving forward.
“We can no longer allow each other to be disengaged; we must take account of where we are as a community. As leaders and young professionals together, we have to create an action plan for social change, to propel us out of this cycle of self-imposed disenfranchisement. We can and will thrive,” said incoming MULYP Social Chair Rhonnie Brewer.
A panel of community advocates then provided their input on possible solutions to solve long standing issues that exist in Memphis. The panel included Beverly Robertson, President, National Civil Rights Museum; Ron Redwing, CEO, The Redwing Group; Wendi C. Thomas, Columnist, Editor & Multimedia Journalist; George Monger, Executive Director, The Consortium MMT; Regina Walker, Senior Vice President of Community Impact and United Way of the Mid-South; and Dr. J.R. Futrell, President/CEO of Young Man University.