Insight News

Jul 07th


Report finds nearly 80 percent of school waste could be recycled

Results from a first-of-its kind school waste composition study provide valuable insight on the best targets for reducing waste and improving recycling programs in schools.

The study was a collaboration of Hennepin County; the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA); the City of Minneapolis; and Minneapolis, Minnetonka and Hopkins public schools.

Significant findings from the report include:
•    Nearly 80 percent of all the waste generated by a school could be recycled or composted.
•    More than 60 percent of what is currently discarded as trash could be recycled or composted.
•    Food waste and recyclable paper are two prominent materials thrown away by schools that could be recycled.

Mayor Coleman seeks applicants for Boards and Committees

Mayor Chris Coleman is seeking applicants for Saint Paul’s committees, boards and commissions. The City of Saint Paul has dozens of committees that cover a wide range of topics and appeal to a variety of interests. The Mayor and City Council rely on committees, boards and commissions for thoughtful advice to create policies and develop programs.

Some committees have requirements, including Saint Paul residency. You can learn more by visiting or by contacting Chai Lee at 651-266-8512 or

One Nation Working Together: Our Blueprint for Prosperity, Equality and Justice for All

In a recent op-ed, NAACP President and CEO Ben Jealous and I spelled out in great detail the importance of the upcoming "One Nation Working Together" march, a mobilization that will assemble in our nation's capital on October 2 for jobs, justice and education.

On that wonderful day, we will forge our considerable will and determination with hundreds of other progressive organizations to declare our unequivocal unity with the communities, many of them underserved, who have joined us in the mobilization. We will revitalize those forces that in the past have been so formidable in their call for social and political equality. And we will ensure that those with access to decent jobs, a good education, and uncompromising justice are among the nation's majority.

NAACP President and CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous to participate in 40th Annual Congressional Black Caucus

Benjamin Todd Jealous, NAACP President and CEO will participate in a number of events at this year’s Congressional Black Caucus in Washington, DC.

In addition to other issues, President Jealous will focus on the impetus for a major march by One Nation Working Together planned for 10-2-10 in Washington DC on the mall.

Gun show question stirs controversy at MN State Fair

Gun show question stirs controversy at MN State FairAs the Minnesota State Fair wound to a close with Labor Day, debate on gun control measures started heating up again. At issue is a polling question asked of fairgoers about whether a background check should be required for people who purchase firearms at gun shows. Opponents of proposed legislation to close the gun show loophole say the question masks an agenda to take away their guns.

Heather Martens, executive director of Citizens for a Safer Minnesota, says opponents of the proposed law are just trying to promote misinformation about the issue. She says the public has already shown overwhelming support for background checks for all gun sales at gun shows, and points to recent scientific polls, including a poll of National Rifle Association (NRA) members.

Why we are marching on October 2nd

 Why we are marching on October 2ndThe past two years have been marked by major progress despite massive challenges, and a worrying resurgence of far-right activity, urging massive resistance to our momentum. We must keep pushing forward. We have come too far to let ourselves be turned back now.

Together with our allies in the civil and human rights community, the NAACP and our allies have advanced an agenda that has successfully increased rights for women at work, expanded healthcare coverage to tens of millions of Americans, cut the sentencing disparity between crack and powder by more than 80 percent, saved more that 150,000 teacher's jobs, and created more than 3 million more jobs throughout the economy.

Hastings condemns Dove World Outreach Center’s proposed Quran burning

Hastings condemns Dove World Outreach Center’s proposed Quran burning  (Washington, DC) Today, Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-Miramar) condemned the plan by the Dove World Outreach Center in Gainesville, Florida to burn copies of the Quran to mark the 9th anniversary of the terrorist attacks on September 11th:

“The downright racism behind this hate-filled organization’s threat to burn copies of the Quran is disgraceful to American values. The issue here is not our coveted right of free speech; the issue is American values. Hate is hate and this is free speech running amuck. It is irresponsible to hide behind the First Amendment and knowingly put our U.S. military in harm’s way.

Shirley Sherrod declines new job offer from USDA

Special to the NNPA from the Los Angeles Sentinel

(NNPA) - After being forced to resign and then maligned publicly, Shirley Sherrod has refused to return to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). It was about one month ago the former USDA official resigned after a blogger posted an edited portion of a speech she had made that caused a rush to judgment by the Secretary of Agriculture and many others.

The edited tape of Sherrod speaking at an NAACP event seemed to suggest that she had declined to aid a White farmer in 1986. But when played, the full version of the event showed what really happened and put the entire speech in context: that she actually helped the farmer. Sherrod was fired once the edited tape surfaced and before the entire version was viewed.

Mass marches across the nation to expose vast racial inequities

WASHINGTON (NNPA) - According to civil rights veteran the Rev. Jesse Jackson, Sr., an estimated 23,000 people were arrested in civil rights protests across America between February 1, 1960 and August 28, 1963. On that day, 47 years ago, people not only marched on Washington, but in cities and towns around the nation.

“That day a thousand marches took place around the country at the same time, marches for justice and jobs,” Jackson recalled in a recent interview with the NNPA News Service.

Waters, Rangel seek to downplay race in investigations

Waters, Rangel seek to downplay race in investigationsWASHINGTON (NNPA) – US Reps. Maxine Waters (D-CA) and Charles B. Rangel (D-NY) are apparently seeking to downplay public allegations of racism as they seek to make the facts of their cases heard before the Office of Congressional Ethics.

“People are speculating all kinds of things,” Waters said in an August 6 interview with the NNPA News Service. “There is one thing that I am clear about though. I am clear that if this gets obscured with any other argument before we get our facts out, we don’t stand a chance because people will say we’re hiding behind race or something. So, I think what has to happen is the charges have to be clear, we have to have our day in court and then let’s deal with the process and how the system is working or not working.”

At NNPA deadline, Waters awaited enumeration of charges involving the receipt of $12 million in bailout funds by the Massachusetts-based One United Bank, where her husband owns stock. Rangel faces 13 charges involving reporting of income on his financial disclosure forms and alleged fund-raising violations.

Rep. Ellison and Mayor Rybak support the Local Jobs for America Act

The recession is forcing states and municipalities to cut jobs that are critically important—teachers, police, firefighters, childcare workers, and others. US Rep. Keith Ellison (DFL-MN) and the Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak are promoting the Local Jobs for America Act, which will provide funding for municipal jobs. The US House of Representatives Education and Labor Committee have estimated that the act will create or save one million jobs across the country.

Support will be targeted directly to states and municipalities with the greatest number of people out of work in order to restore important local services. “Cities have been under tremendous pressure to lay off government jobs which only decreases our quality of life…It is entirely appropriate for the federal government to intervene since the private sector can’t provide the number of jobs that we need,” Ellison said. The Local Jobs for America Act will help ensure that local com¬munities can still operate essential services. Because of the recession, many local communities have cut back on education, public safety, childcare, health care, and transporta¬tion. As a result, families who rely on these services are suffering the cost of these cutbacks.
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