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Mixed record on progress of black women

Mixed record on progress of black women


Despite the stubborn persistence of racial disparities in health, there is cause for black women to celebrate.

"Overall, our life expectancy continues to rise, while teenaged pregnancy rates have dropped dramatically. And most recently, the rate of HIV infection among black women has fallen tremendously, down over 20 percent in just two years' time," says a new report, "Black Women in the United States, 2014: Progress and Challenges," presented by the Black Women's Roundtable, a division of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation.

But not all of the news about black women is good.

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Judge upholds election of Kevin Johnson in Black Mayors’ rift

Judge upholds election of Kevin Johnson in Black Mayors’ rift

WASHINGTON – After intense internal fighting, court battles and competing board of directors that have characterized Sacramento, Calif. Kevin Johnson's term as president of the National Conference of Black Mayors since last May, his first month in office, a judge has ruled decidedly in Johnson's favor, effectively firing Executive Director Vanessa R. Williams and nullifying all actions of the rump board challenging Johnson's right to remain in office.

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Christopher S. Brasher issued his ruling in Atlanta last week.

"We're gratified that the court has validated the election of our leadership and vindicated our efforts to take the necessary steps to restore accountability and fiscal integrity to this venerable and critical organization," Johnson said in a statement. "Now we can move forward by taking the actions that will address any outstanding problems we have in order to ensure that the NCBM will benefit current and future mayors and their constituents."

In some ways, it may be a Pyrrhic victory for Johnson. He is limited to one term, which expires in May. Johnson is also vice president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors and is a leading candidate to become president of the group in June.

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AAA’s April Warning: Avoid distractions while behind the wheel

AAA’s April Warning: Avoid distractions while behind the wheel

In recognition of Distracted Driving Awareness Month, AAA is warning drivers to avoid any activities that divert attention from the primary driving task.

"While we've made substantial progress in the past few years by raising awareness about risky driving behaviors, the simple fact is that distraction continues to be a significant contributing factor to deaths and injuries on our roadways," said AAA Traffic Safety manager, John Pecchio. "We all should take personal responsibility for focusing on driving rather than on dangerous distractions."

Distractions are responsible for vehicle crashes leading to more than 3,000 deaths and 387,000 injuries in 2011, according to the most recent data provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

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In the South, the Obamacare debate continues, even as law insures thousands

In the South, the Obamacare debate continues, even as law insures thousands

FRANKFORT, Ky.—In one of the poorest areas of Appalachia, about 2500 people have signed up to get health insurance over the last six months – a number that represents more than a tenth of Clay County's residents.

One hundred and twenty miles way, the county's state senator, Robert Stivers, is laying out his plans to gradually gut the Affordable Care Act in Kentucky, which provided his constituents with insurance. The soft-spoken 52-year-old Republican is hardly a fiery Tea Party type: he first joined the state legislature back in 1997 and slowly rose through the ranks to become the state Senate president. In a mid-March interview in a small room just off the floor of the Senate in Kentucky's Capitol building, Stivers acknowledged that Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear had handled the rollout of Obama's health-care law smoothly in this state and that some people in his district now have health insurance for the first time.

Stivers, though, is unmoved. The Affordable Care Act, he says, is "unsustainable" in the long run. If Republicans can gain more seats in the state legislature here over the next year, he said, they will look to peel back Kentucky's participation in the health-care law by limiting the expansion of Medicaid in the state.

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The Iconic Living Legends Award

The Iconic Living Legends Award

The Iconic Living Legends Awards Ceremony and Exhibit – scheduled to coincide with National Women's History Month – was held recently on Langston University's Oklahoma City campus.

The Iconic Living Legends Award salutes women who have had an iconic impact on the progress of women. This year's honorees included Lelia Foley-Davis, who became the first African-American woman elected mayor in the United States when she was elected mayor of Taft, Okla. on April 3, 1973.

During her acceptance speech, Foley-Davis took the audience back in time for a glimpse of the past and then reflected on the success and progress that she said so many have had a hand in fostering She brought to life episodes of difficulty and depression, detailing barriers created by whites and blacks. She also emphasized how hard people worked to overcome the obstacles.

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African Americans locked out of housing market

African Americans locked out of housing market

WASHINGTON – As the housing market recovers a new report by the Urban Institute shows that African-American borrowers "have been disproportionately shut out of the market."

According to the report titled, "Where Have All the Loans Gone? The Impact of Credit Availability on Mortgage Volume," the share of African-American borrowers was 6 percent in 2001 but fell to 4.8 percent in 2012. By contrast, the share of white borrowers increased more than 3 percent from 2001 to 2012 and now account for 71.2 percent of mortgage loans.

From 2001 to 2012, the number of loans that went to African-American borrowers decreased by 55 percent while the number of loans to whites dropped 41 percent, with most of the losses occurring after 2005.

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No such thing as too much love

No such thing as too much love

Is it possible for your baby to become too attached to you?

That's the question many parents may find themselves pondering at some point during their child's first years. Mothers and fathers can often confuse being attentive to a newborn or toddler's needs with smothering or spoiling the child.

There is a widespread sentiment that too much warmth and affection will lead to a child who is too needy or 'clingy'. But according to experts, this notion is false.

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