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 Response Page -  King  Interview      
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These comments are responses to the questions listed below,
which were generated in regard to the 
Louis King  Interview of
01-18-2012.
 

OVERVIEW

In the Twin Cities area between 2010 and 2040 there will be an absolute decline of 272,000 in number of working age whites and an absolute increase of 445,000 in working age people of color. Summit Academy OIC offers highly focused, time-limited training in two fields that will definitely be hiring more workers, construction and health care, according to Summit's leader, Louis King II. About three-fourths of Summit graduates are placed in jobs today. Summit stresses the importance of getting underemployed persons permanently attached to the work world, including the essential element of networking, from which people of color were largely excluded in years past.   

For the complete interview summary see: http://bit.ly/11NkAHs

Response Summary: Readers have been asked to rate, on a scale of (0) most disagreement, to (5) neutral, to (10) most agreement, the following points discussed by Louis King. Average response ratings shown below are simply the mean of all readers’ zero-to-ten responses to the ideas proposed and should not be considered an accurate reflection of a scientifically structured poll.

1. Dismal results for minorities. (8.5 average response) There has been a dismal record of education and employment for minorities--in stark contrast to a widely publicized high quality of life in the Twin Cities area and Minnesota.

2. Opportunities will emerge. (6.8 average response) Unprecedented job opportunities for people of color are emerging as numbers of working age white people dramatically decline in absolute numbers and the number of working age people of color more than double.

3. Training and demographics key. (7.0 average response) With intensive, short-term job training in organizations such as Summit Academy OIC, many heretofore underemployed people will be able to get construction jobs as baby boom white workers retire, and health care jobs, as an aging population will require more health care workers.

4. Social networks can help. (8.2 average response) Employment prospects can improve as people of color fully develop social networks that whites used so successfully in the past.

5. Schools need competition. (7.3 average response) Because some public schools in low-income areas aren't adequately preparing students for the world of work and exhibit little interest in changing, competition needs to be introduced.

6. Transportation innovation needed. (8.8 average response) Innovations in helping lower-income people find home-to-work transportation is necessary because job locations are so widely dispersed in the Twin Cities area.

Response Distribution:

Strongly disagree

Moderately disagree

Neutral

Moderately agree

Strongly agree

Total Responses

1. Dismal results for minorities.

0%

0%

17%

25%

58%

12

2. Opportunities will emerge.

0%

8%

33%

42%

17%

12

3. Training and demographics key.

0%

17%

17%

42%

25%

12

4. Social networks can help.

0%

0%

8%

58%

33%

12

5. Schools need competition.

8%

8%

8%

33%

42%

12

6. Transportation innovation needed.

0%

0%

8%

33%

58%

12

Individual Responses:

Don Anderson (10) (5) (5) (7.5) (10) (7.5)

Chris Brazelton (10) (7.5) (7.5) (10) (7.5) (10)

3. Training and demographics key. People who have had little success in their lives need reinforcement and short-term success in order to gain the confidence to return for long-term training. Asking someone struggling to stick to a two or four year program with no job/no income leads to high rates of failure and dropping out.

4. Social networks can help. Many employers will not hire someone unknown and unproven. Better jobs are often obtained through connections. One of the lasting remnants of racism is the lack of social connections to families and friends who own businesses.

5. Schools need competition. Competition, or improvement in the public schools. Parents and other community members must take an ever more active role in encouraging success and setting the bar high. Sometimes people don't realize how much of a difference it makes having a family that sets high expectations and resources to achieve them, like access to computers for research, etc., vs. having a family who has struggled all their lives and expects nothing better for their children. No blame here, but challenges to be overcome.

6. Transportation innovation needed. Employers expect reliable attendance, which is problematic with unreliable transportation.

Gen Olson (7.5) (7.5) (10) (7.5) (10) (7.5)

Anonymous (10) (7.5) (10) (5) (7.5) (10)

Dave Broden (5) (10) (7.5) (10) (10) (10)

1. Dismal results for minorities. The statement above is very strongly worded. The comments of Louis King would suggest the statement is true. Other discussion/information confirms less capability for minorities but the degree is not clear. I refrain from taking a position on this hard statement without further well-informed data.

2. Opportunities will emerge. Demographic shifts make opportunities that people must be prepared for in key job categories. This must expand to professional as well as labor grades.

3. Training and demographics key. A realistic statement that is supported and being realized.

4. Social networks can help. Networking always benefits employment of all demographic groups.

5. Schools need competition. Competition is beneficial throughout education.

6. Transportation innovation needed. A definitely valuable approach for all demographics.

Ralph Brauer (10) (5) (2.5) (7.5) (0) (10)

1. Dismal results for minorities. The numbers show it.

2. Opportunities will emerge. The question is whether they will be filled by people of color or new immigrants as occurred in the late nineteenth century.

3. Training and demographics key. Construction jobs are already being filled by a combination of immigrants/foreign workers and technology. What has happened to roofing (which has become a low-income job filled by foreign workers) will spread to other areas of construction. Technology such as nail guns, laser-guided saws and measuring equipment is turning basic construction from a skilled profession into one a worker can be trained to do quickly. Better to aim for still-skilled fields like plumbing, HVAC and electrical, but that will require union cooperation. It's time the unions stepped up to the plate when it comes to people of color in skilled trades.

4. Social networks can help. Because the general public is finally aware of them, social networks are the new old idea and like next new things of the past are over-hyped. When George Bush is using Twitter you know it's on its way out.

5. Schools need competition. Studies we and others have done show a majority of these schools are resource poor.

6. Transportation innovation needed. Absolutely. Next to education (which has now become separate and unequal) transportation is the most racist element of our state budget. New freeways are built for largely white affluent suburbs but no comparable investment is made for those who either cannot or choose not to drive or do not live in the suburbs. Suburban legislators constantly complain about mass transit, even thought they get 3/4 of the pie.

Scott Halstead (10) (5) (2.5) (10) (5) (10)

2. Opportunities will emerge. Individuals must be educated and prepared for the jobs of the future. If they aren't, the employers will move the jobs to another location that has qualified people.

3. Training and demographics key. I wouldn't count the construction business as a growth industry. Also, the training may be much more extensive and require broader education to effectively utilize the technology of the future. The technical schools will likely have higher demand for skilled blue-collar work.

6. Transportation innovation needed. All of the job growth is in the suburbs. Our rail transit projects have produced construction jobs to build the transit lines and the adjacent housing. They have not produced good permanent jobs in the central cities or along the transit lines. We are spending tremendous sums for construction of our high cost rail that is mediocre at best with even higher operating and maintenance funds that won't get people to locations where there is job growth.

Anonymous (7.5) (2.5) (7.5) (7.5) (7.5) (7.5)

Malcolm W. McDonald (10) (10) (10) (10) (10) (10)

Wayne Jennings (10) (8) (8) (8) (10) (10)

OIC does great work as does Twin Cities Rise and Rebuild Resources and probably several others serving this training need. Still, much more is needed and even more important is reaching younger populations to avoid the adult crunch.

Chuck Lutz (7) (9) (8) (8) (7) (8)

Bert LeMunyon (5) (5) (5) (7.5) (2.5) (5)

1. Dismal results for minorities. I believe this is more a social problem wherein a higher percentage of minorities come from single-family homes and homes where the parents are not highly educated. Kids of color can do very well when the come from a stable two-parent home.

2. Opportunities will emerge. If whites and those of color are to be treated equally in the workplace, they need to be treated the same demographically and not segregated into white and non-white categories.

3. Training and demographics key. This is a need regardless of race.

4. Social networks can help. Social networking should be interracial.

5. Schools need competition. Parents that care can already send their kids to "Southwest" achieving schools.

6. Transportation innovation needed. One of the problems in the metro area is that nobody wants to move close to where they work.

    

The Civic Caucus   is a non-partisan, tax-exempt educational organization.   The Core participants include persons of varying political persuasions,
reflecting years of leadership in politics and business. Click here  to see a short personal background of each.

   David Broden,  Janis Clay,  Bill Frenzel,  Paul Gilje,   Jan Hively,  Dan Loritz (Chair),  Marina Lyon,  Joe Mansky, 
Tim McDonald,  John Mooty,  Jim Olson,  Wayne Popham  and Bob White


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The Civic Caucus, 01-01-2008
2104 Girard Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55405.  civiccaucus@comcast.net
Verne C. Johnson, chair, 952-835-4549,       Paul A. Gilje, coordinator, 952-890-5220.

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