Milwaukee County supervisor hopes to create office dedicated to improving lives of African-Americans

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MILWAUKEE COUNTY -- A push to create an office specifically dedicated to improving the lives of African-Americans in Wisconsin is gaining some steam.

Khalif Rainey

Khalif Rainey

"All indicators say that this is the worst place in America to live if you are African-American," Khalif Rainey, Milwaukee County supervisor said. "Incarceration, health, unemployment, small business creation, education, whatever the metric is, we're at the absolute worst."

Rainey wants to create an office on African-American affairs within Milwaukee County. He envisions the office helping to streamline public policy when it comes to the issues Milwaukee County's African-Americans face.

"Right now, it's fragmented. The heads of these governments say we are aware of it, but where is the initiative? To say you're aware that you know we're unemployed and we're incarcerated is one thing -- but to actually make it a priority to address it is something different," Rainey said.

Rainey's resolution calling on Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele to create the office received unanimous support from the Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors' Health and Human Needs Committee on Wednesday morning, October 28th.

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele

Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele

Abele says he hopes the resolution at least sparks a conversation about the root issues and how they can be better addressed.

"My hope is that this connects though to real action. You know this resolution doesn't have funding with it. I told Khalif I'd love to talk to him about it," Abele said.

Rainey wasn't able to provide an estimate of what it may cost to create the office.

"Private grants, corporations -- support is all being sought, but the original seed money would have to come from the county," Rainey said.

Rainey says initially, they're hoping to have three staff members, including an executive director, a research analyst and a grant writer.

Milwaukee Alderman Willie Wade and Rep. Leon Young (D-Milwaukee) are also promising to pursue creating similar offices at both the city and state level.

6 comments

  • Terry B.

    How is this proposal NOT “RACIST” ?
    The city government should be dedicated to the improvement of the lives of ALL citizens, NOT just one particular ethnic group. This is a prime example of MISUSE of taxpayer dollars, and is UNCONSTITUTIONAL, in that it creates a SEPERATE government, dedicated to a group, based strictly on ETHNICITY.
    If blacks want this type of “office” dedicated ONLY to their race, let them fund it through PRIVATE resources.

  • What The ...

    What would happen if an office was only for white people? Oh thats right, blacks and whites did have different offices, bathrooms and so on…. So its OK to split up races as long as it is not done by white people…. Huh, is that ironic….

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