City unveils report on racism in housing, health and education


FRONT BLOWS THROUGH TONIGHT. SHANNON:A SHINING CITY… WITH A SEEDY SECRET.TODAY… THE FINAL REPORT ON THE MAYOR’S ORDER TO GET TO THE BOTTOM OF INSTITUTIONAL RACISM.SHANNON FOR MONTHS A CITY TASK FORCE HAS STUDIED THE CAUSE AND EFFECTS OF RACISM IN AUSTIN. IT COVERED FIVE SECTORS OF CITY LIFE.BUT BEHIND THE FINDINGS AND THE RECOMMENDATIONS… REAL PEOPLE STRUGGLING WITH SYSTEMIC PROBLEMS.KXAN’S GIGI BARNETT TALKED WITH TWO OF THEM – IN LIGHT OF WHAT THE STUDY REVEALS.GILBERT AND JANE RIVERA BOUGHT THEIR HOME IN EAST AUSTIN BACK IN 1983. THE PRICETAG — 39-THOUSAND DOLLAR. TODAY — THE SAME HOUSE — IS VALUED MORE THAN ONE- AND-A-HALF MILLION DOLLARS.A GOLDMINE FOR SOMEONE WHO WANTS TO SELL. THEY DON’T BECAUSE THE RETIRED COUPLE CAN’T.EAST AUSTIN HOMEOWNER JANE RIVERA: “WHERE ARE WE GOING TO RETIRE IN STYLE? WHERE CAN WE BUY WHAT WE HAVE NOW? WHERE CAN WE RECREATE THE COMMUNITY THAT WE RETIRED INTO?” INSIDE A WIDE RANGE OF TOPICS FROM EDUCTION TO HEALTHCARE, LAW ENFORCEMENT TO HOUSING. HOUSING PRACTICES LIKE GENTRIFCATION IN EAST AUSTIN THAT’S PUSHING UP PROPERTY PRICES AND DRIVING LONG-TIME, MOSTLY MINORITY RESIDENTS OUT.EAST AUSTIN HOMEOWNER GILBERT RIVERA: EVERY TIME I SEE A HOME BULLDOZED DOWN, I SEE A GRAVE. A FRESH GRAVE. WHERE MY HISTORY, MY CULTURE, MY FAMILY IS BEING BURIED UNDERNEATH THERE. COUNCILWOMAN ORA HOUSTON SAYS IT’S A DILEMMA THE CITY HAS BEEN LOCKED INTO FOR DECADES. AND, THAT — JUST AS THE STUDY SAYS — SOME OF THE DISCRIMINATION IS BACKED BY CITY POLICIES.COUCILWOMAN ORA HOUSTON: “THEY DON’T UNDERSTAND THE SYSTEM HAS PUT IN PLACE TO INHIBIT THEIR ABILITIES FOR THEM TO BE SUCCESSFUL.”SOME OF THE RECOMMENDATIONS INCLUDE:- STARTING A FUND TO CREATE AT LEAST 400 AFFORDABLE HOUSING UNITS — CITY LEADERS IN DENVER ARE DOING IT.- USE PUBLIC-OWNED PROPERTY TO BUILD HOMES FOR LOW-INCOME FAMILIES. – AND OFFERING TAX-PAYMENT ASSISTANTS TO SENIOR CITIZENS LIKE THE RIVERAS.GILBERT RIVERA: “THE COUNCIL AND EVERYBODY SAYS WE’RE PROVIDING AFFORDABLE HOUSING. AFFORDABLE FOR WHOM? ” I’M GIGI BARNETT, KXAN NEWS.SHANNON:A BIG PART OF THE REPORT LOOKS AT WAYS TO ELIMINATE INSTITUTIONAL RACISM IN EDUCATION.THE PLAN CALLS FOR A FOCUS ON FOUR AREAS: REPRESENTATION IN HIRING. CURRICULUM AND ACCOUNTABILITY. EDUCATION ADMISSION AND ACCESS AND LEADERSHIP BUILDING.THE REPORT SAYS AUSTIN NEEDS MORE ETHNIC DIVERSITY AMONG TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATORS – DISCRIMINATION. SHANNON:A SPECIAL TASK FORCE REVEALS ITS FINDINGS IN A REPORT SPARKED BY TWO HIGH PROFILE POLICE CASES. IN IT, FIVE PARTS OF LIFE — AND HOW THEY’RE IMPACTED BY CITYWIDE, SYSTEMIC RACISM.KXAN’S GIGI BARNETT DELVES INTO THE REPORT AND LOOKS AT THE NEXT STEPS FOR CITY LEADERS.((PKG))EAST AUSTIN HOMEOWNER GILBERT RIVERA: EVERY TIME I SEE A HOME BULLDOZED DOWN, I SEE A GRAVE. A FRESH GRAVE.”EAST AUSTIN HOMEOWNER GILBERT RIVERA SAYS IT HAPPENS EVERYTIME HE GETS A NEW NEIGHBOR — ONE WHO WANTS TO BUILD A FANCY HOME NEXT TO THE ONE HE’S OWNED SINCE 1983.HIS PROPERTY TAXES ARE SKY HIGH…THANKS TO GENTRIFICATION.RIVERA: “THE WORKING POOR ARE THE ONES BEING DRIVEN OUT. THEY ARE THE ONES WHO KEEP THE CITY GOING.” HIS PROBLEM IS ONE IN A SLEW ISSUED LISTED IN THIS REPORT ON CITYWIDE SYSTEMIC RACISM, TOPICS FROM EDUCTION TO HEALTHCARE, LAW ENFORCEMENT TO HOUSING. MAYOR STEVE ADLER ORDERED IT BACK IN NOVEMBER, AS THE CITY WAS DEALING WITH TWO USE-OF-FORCE CASES — THE BREAION KING ARREST AND THE SHOOTING OF DAVID JOSEPH.MAYOR STEVE ADLER: “THERE HAVE BEEN OPPORTUNITIES THAT HAVE BEEN AVAILABLE TO ME//THAT WOULD BE DIFFERENT IF I WAS COMING IN AS AN AFRICAN-AMERICAN OR LATINO.”COUNCILWOMAN ORA HOUSTON SAYS IT’S A DILEMMA THE CITY HAS BEEN LOCKED INTO FOR DECADES. AND, THAT — JUST AS THE STUDY SAYS — SOME OF THE DISCRIMINATION IS BACKED BY CITY POLICIES.COUCILWOMAN ORA HOUSTON: “THEY DON’T UNDERSTAND THE SYSTEM HAS PUT IN PLACE TO INHIBIT THEIR ABILITIES FOR THEM TO BE SUCCESSFUL.”SOME OF THE RECOMMENDATIONS INCLUDE:- RECRUITING MORE TEACHERS OF – OFFER OTHER ALTERNATIVES TO JAIL TIME FOR SOME MISDEMEANORS.- AND GIVE TAX- PAYMENT ASSISTANT TO SENIOR CITIEZENS LIKE THE RIVERAS. GILBERT RIVERA: “THE COUNCIL AND EVERYBODY SAYS WE’RE PROVIDING AFFORDABLE HOUSING. AFFORDABLE FOR WHOM? ” GIGI: “ON THURSDAY THE CITY COUNCIL WILL VOTE TO ADOPT THE TASK FORCE’S RECOMMENDATION. AND, THEN THEY’LL TURN THEM OVER TO THE CITY MANAGER SO SHE CAN BEGIN LOOKING AT WAYS TO BEGIN THEM. AT CITY HALL, I’M GIGI BARNETT. KXAN NEWS.”SHANNON: THE FULL REPORT.. WITH IT’S CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS IS ABOUT 68 PAGES. WE HAVE IT FOR YOU.. IN

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