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Criminalizing Youth

Is our criminal justice system setting up minority youth to fail? Though recent reports stated declines in citywide crime, neighborhoods with a large concentration of minority youth continue to harbor high crime rates in comparison to other areas. According to Tracy Siska from the Chicago Justice Project, part of the problem is that continuous high profile […]

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Abriendo Puertas: Empowering Latino Parents to Help their Kids Excel in School

Everyone can agree on this – parenting is not easy. Now, add to the challenge the pressure of doing it in a foreign country where language and cultural barriers can get in the way of connecting with your own kids. This is the case for many Latino immigrant parents who struggle with the challenges of […]

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Tilden Slated for Turnaround: How Many Transitions Can a School Handle?

Tilden Career Academy, located in the Back of the Yards neighborhood, has been among the 10 schools flagged to become a “turnaround” school next year. Without having a clear understanding of what will happen to the school, the students and parents worry that new changes are only going to perpetuate the existing high teacher turnover rate […]

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Sewing with a Cause

Gloria Rivero and her mother explore the idea of social entrepreneurship in Brighton Park Gloria Rivero and her mother, Myrka De Rivero, are moving the idea of social enterprise forward in Brighton Park. Their almost 3-year-old business, Fashion Revolution Inc., is not just any ordinary sewing shop. Influenced by a simple desire of empowering young […]

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Acts of Defacement Target Neighborhood Murals

It was a striking mural. Painted two years ago along a freestanding wall inside the Manuel Perez Jr. Memorial Plaza in Little Village, the mural emulated the colorful images of some of the most celebrated figures in the Latino community—Cesar Chavez, Manuel Perez Jr., Sonia Sotomayor and Rudy Lozano Sr. Despite some residents’ concern over […]

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Back of the Yards Residents Say “No” to Ward Divisions

Video and slide-show below   On Saturday Nov. 12, Back of the Yards residents and community leaders gathered for a press event at David Square Park to say “no” to the ward divisions that for 10 years have delayed progress in their neighborhood. From reopening the neighborhood’s local library, fighting back violence and keeping the […]

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Feel It. Check It. Fight it.

Regular Screenings Proved Vital After Local Resident is Diagnosed with Breast Cancer Marta Pacheco, 54, never imagined that a simple community health fair would help save her life. After participating in a free mammogram exam, she thought the results would be the same as her other regular yearly checkups. However, she was stunned when the exam […]

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Occupy Wall Street Movement Gains Momentum

Wamaid Metsey-Borges never planned to celebrate her 40th birthday in jail. She was among the 175 people arrested Saturday night, Oct. 15. After a 40th birthday dinner with friends, Borges headed over to Grant Park where many Occupy Chicago protesters gathered as part of the worldwide movement against corporate greed and government capitulation to big […]

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Art Down the Street: Chicago Artists Month Features Art Walks in Pilsen and Little Village

While some residents make their way to the heart of Pilsen’s art district, others will stroll through 26th Street to catch this year’s assortment of Latino exhibiting artists, as both neighborhoods are participants in the annual Chicago Artists Month  For three months, Jackie Orozco carried a glass jar everywhere she went. As she encountered friends, […]

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Undocumented Youth: Dreaming, Waiting, Falling Through the Cracks

Interviews and Reporting by THE GATE’s Youth Journalists Spanish translation immediately follows at the end of this article. Traducción en español sigue inmediatamente al final del articulo. Although exact numbers are hard to attain, it is no secret the Back of the Yards neighborhood is home to a large population of undocumented youth who arrive […]