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Extra time for some to finish health care enrollment

healthcare 600The Obama administration has announced that extra time will be granted after the March 31 deadline for consumers to complete enrollment in an insurance plan under the health care law, the Associated Press reports.

"We are experiencing a surge in demand and are making sure that we will be ready to help consumers who may be in line by the deadline to complete enrollment, either online or over the phone," Health and Human Services spokesman Aaron Albright told AP.

Officials told AP that extensions will be allowed on the honor system, requiring only that applicants attest that special circumstances or complex cases prevented them from finishing their enrollment by March 31.

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A proud black feminist

Julianne-malveaux-160In a world that is dominated by men, especially white men, feminism is, for me, an empowering concept. It is a movement, which in the United States, according to Wikipedia, is aimed at "defining, establishing and defending equal social, economic and political rights for women."

It is certainly possible to argue that women have come a long way, but while we out-enroll men in college attendance, we don't out earn them, no matter our level of education. We don't out-represent them in elected office, or even in the higher echelons of employment, such as the Fortune 500 corporations. Women are doing better than we ever did and we still have a long way to go.

The feminist movement shows up differently in the African-American community. Our nation's antipathy toward black men suggests that men of African descent are not the same oppressors that white men are, bearing the burden of oppression themselves.

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Obama worse than George W. Bush on SBA Loans

George Curry-160When I interviewed Marie Johns, then the outgoing deputy secretary of the Small Business Administration, a year ago, she said the SBA does not separate figures by race, though it hopes to do so at some point.

Technically, she was correct in saying the SBA does not separate agency-wide figures by race. But the SBA's 8 (a) program figures can be broken down by race and that's where she was being disingenuous. I specifically asked her twice about the status of black businesses under Obama and twice she was less than forthcoming.

Now, I know why: The Obama administration's record of guaranteeing loans to black businesses is worse than it was under George W. Bush.

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Black economics, growing income gap focus of NNPA luncheon

blackeconomics 600WASHINGTON – The economic status of African Americans and the "crisis-level" income gap between the rich and the poor was the agenda of this year's State of the Black Press luncheon at the National Press Club in D.C.

The event (March 21st) sponsored by the National Newspaper Publishers Association Foundation featured discourse among journalists and financial experts. They weighed in on different factors affecting black economics, including the crippling recession that some said wiped out gains made by middle-class blacks during the recent recession.

"The recession supposedly ended in 2009 but there are still adverse effects," said economist Valerie Wilson, who works with the D.C.-based Economic Policy Institute. "At the rate of recovery that is taking place we will not reach pre-recession employment levels possibly until 2018."

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Publishers Charles Tisdale and M. Paul Redd honored by former peers

publisher 600WASHINGTON – Two legendary publishers – Charles Tisdale of the Jackson Advocate in Mississippi and M. Paul Redd Sr. of the Westchester County Press in New York – have been posthumously inducted into National Newspaper Publishers Association Foundation's Distinguished Black Publishers' Enshrinement.

They were honored here last week during Black Press Week's annual observance. The ceremony is reserved for stalwart publishers who have significantly contributed to the legacy of the Black Press.

Benjamin Todd Jealous, former executive director of the NNPA Foundation and immediate past president of the NAACP, gave remarks about each honoree.

 

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