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PCC Cascade Campus Hosts The State Of Black Oregon 2015 Conference


Portland Mayor Charlies Hales spoke about the disparities in income equality at the State of Black Oregon conference at Portland Community College's Cascade Campus in Northeast Portland on May 5, 2015. 

Portland Mayor Charlies Hales spoke about the disparities in income equality at the State of Black Oregon conference at Portland Community College's Cascade Campus in Northeast Portland on May 5, 2015. 

Alan Sylvestre/OPB

 

At Tuesday’s State of Black Oregon 2015 conference, racial disparity in Oregon was the topic of discussion.  It was an opportunity for community members to hear the results of  a new report released by the Urban League of Portland.

The report, also called The State of Black Oregon 2015, is the result of two years of research, which provides data on how black people in Oregon are faring at school, in urban and rural communities and in the workforce.

Two of the findings from the report: 

  • 30 percent of black families live below the poverty line, compared to 11.7 percent of white families.
  • Black families face more than double the rate of food insecurity as well, with 44.1 percent of black families affected, compared with 18.7 percent of white families.

 

Former Oregon State Senator Avel Louise Gordly speaks to the crowd at the State of Black Oregon conference at Portland Community College's Cascade Campus in Northeast Portland on May 5, 2015. Gordly was the first African American woman to serve in the Oregon Senate. 

Former Oregon State Senator Avel Louise Gordly speaks to the crowd at the State of Black Oregon conference at Portland Community College's Cascade Campus in Northeast Portland on May 5, 2015. Gordly was the first African American woman to serve in the Oregon Senate. 

Alan Sylvestre/OPB

 

Those in attendance included Portland Mayor Charlie Hales, Urban League of Portland’s director of advocacy and public policy Midge Purcell and former Oregon State Senator Avel Gordly, who was the first African American woman to be elected to the Oregon Senate.

Mayor Hales spoke about societal norms that he thinks should not be tolerated within the United States, in specific reference to the African American community. 

“There’s a conventional wisdom in this country, an acceptance of things that should not be accepted,”  Hales said.

He added that people need to, “think about innovative ways that we can get upstream in those trends and make a difference.”

Gordly wrote the foreword for the report, which she read aloud at the conference. Following the presentation of the findings, community members were invited to ask questions of speakers.

 

Community members gathered at Portland Community College's Cascade Campus on May 5, 2015 for the State of Black Oregon conference. The conference was an opportunity for the Urban League of Portland to present the results of the State of Black Oregon 2015 report, which looks at different sectors of disparities between white, and african american families in Oregon. 

Community members gathered at Portland Community College's Cascade Campus on May 5, 2015 for the State of Black Oregon conference. The conference was an opportunity for the Urban League of Portland to present the results of the State of Black Oregon 2015 report, which looks at different sectors of disparities between white, and african american families in Oregon. 

Alan Sylvestre/OPB

 

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