MKE County Exec David Crowley commits his tenure to addressing inequities


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By Alison Dirr, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley laid out his vision for the county Monday, saying he would dedicate his tenure to addressing the gaping inequities in the community.

David Crowley, Milwaukee, Wisconsin’s new County Executive speaks from his office. Mike Sears, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

“As we work to control the virus, keep people safe, and fully re-open our economy, we’re also working to end the racist policies and practices that have held people back and created the underlying conditions for the dramatic racial disparities we see today,” Crowley said. “The truth is we face two pandemics: COVID-19 and racism.”

During the address, which was livestreamed due to COVID-19 concerns, Crowley said the pandemic has exacerbated long-existing disparities and has hit communities of color harder than white residents.

But, he said, there is hope.

Crowley said it is necessary for the county to focus on what’s happening “upstream.”

That means, he said, addressing effects of redlining policies that did not allow people of color to live in certain areas of the county and finding solutions to address the Black unemployment rate, close the racial wage and education gaps, and make affordable health care more available and housing security stronger.

“If we work upstream, we can improve these social health determinants for everyone by dismantling racist, ineffective policies of the past, and ultimately improve health outcomes with an equitable distribution of services for everyone in our county,” he said, adding that the effects of such an effort would last beyond his tenure as county executive.

Crowley was elected to a four-year term in April.

Milwaukee County Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholson said in a statement Monday that she supports Crowley’s vision and agrees with his plan to focus on “upstream” solutions…

Read full article here

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