Marian Wright Edelman, one of the nation’s strongest advocates for youth, will speak about the need for better education and the pathway to incarceration that currently exists for youth in many poor neighborhoods at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13 at Roosevelt University, 430 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago.
Edelman is the founder and president of the Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) and the author of multiple books and writings on ways to provide better opportunities for success to the nation’s poor, largely urban children of color. She will discuss challenges and progress being made through CDF’s ongoing Cradle to Prison Pipeline campaign.
Launched about three years ago, the campaign has inspired coalitions of community leaders, government officials, educators, parents and young people all over the nation to come together and address how to disrupt America’s prison to pipeline in which it is estimated that one in three African-American and one in six Latino boys born in 2001 are at risk of going to prison during their lifetimes.
“We are proud to welcome Marian Wright Edelman to Roosevelt University where we are having a continued discussion with our community partners on ways to help kids in our communities get the education and opportunities they need to keep them out of trouble and on track for a successful future,” said Heather Dalmage, director of the Mansfield Institute for Social Justice and Transformation, which convened a summit in October 2010 to address issues facing at-risk Chicago-area youth.
Since then, the coalition has developed and implemented a plan for assisting the region’s youth, which includes a partnership with Morrill Elementary School on Chicago’s southwest side where restorative justice practices are being introduced. Community partners that are involved with Roosevelt in this initiative include Community Organizing and Family Issues, Community Renewal Society, Grand Boulevard Federation, Equip for Equality and Chicago Area Project.
Edelman is this year’s annual Mansfield Lecturer, and her visit is expected to be an opportunity to discuss progress that’s been made by the local coalition and more importantly, where work of the coalition should be aimed in the future in order to most effectively address the crisis at hand.
“We have been moving forward in a number of ways, including most recently putting Roosevelt University students on the frontlines with our community partners in reaching out to help youth succeed rather than fail and wind up in prison,” Dalmage said.
The lecture will be held in Roosevelt’s 10th floor Murray-Green Library. It is free and open to the public, but seating is limited. For information and/or to reserve a space, contact Nancy Michaels at email@example.com or at 312-341-2150.
430 S. Michigan Ave.Chicago, IL 60605(312) 341-3500
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1400 N. Roosevelt Blvd.Schaumburg, IL 60173(847) 619-7300
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