October 01, 2020 10:00 AM
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NEW ORLEANS - During today's regular meeting, the City Council adopted two resolutions promoting awareness and prevention of breast cancer and domestic violence, passed an ordinance establishing the Youth Advisory Board as a subgroup within the New Orleans Children and Youth Planning Board, honored the life and legacy of late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and approved a Cooperative Endeavor Agreement (CEA) to facilitate infrastructure improvements in the Downtown Development District (DDD).
Council Recognizes October as Breast Cancer & Domestic Violence Awareness Month
In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness and Domestic Violence Awareness Month, both of which are recognized throughout the month of October, the Council adopted two resolutions to promote ongoing conversation around these issues, stand in solidarity with victims and survivors, and commend the efforts of local organizations and agencies.
Through Resolution R-20-311, the Council expresses its support for individuals and families affected by breast cancer, stressing the importance of early detection measures. Recent data shows that women who receive regular screenings have a 47% lower risk of dying from breast cancer. With approximately 1 in 8 women (and 1 in 1,000 men) being diagnosed in their lifetime, and over 42,000 deaths each year, early detection is critical in the fight against this disease.
The Council also adopted Resolution R-20-332, recognizing October as Domestic Violence Awareness Month and acknowledging the many service providers, organizations, and advocates raising awareness of domestic violence resources and the patterns of coercion leveraged by perpetrators to control their partners.
Domestic violence impacts our families, homes, communities, schools, institutions, and workplaces regardless of age, race, disability, gender identity, or socioeconomic status. The impacts of COVID-19 have compounded the effects of domestic abuse by limiting public gathering opportunities. Even as lockdown restrictions are phased out, this remains a critical time for survivors, calling for increased training of local law enforcement officers and bolstering networks built for victims' services.
The Council also received special presentations from the New Orleans Health Department and New Orleans Family Justice Center on the latest trends and data relative to domestic violence and current and future prevention initiatives.
Youth Subgroup Created to Support Children and Youth Planning Board
The Council passed Ordinance 33,127 to update the composition of the New Orleans Children and Youth Planning Board and establish a subgroup within titled the Youth Advisory Board. The new advisory board will consist of 11 - 25 individuals between the ages of 14 - 24, inclusive of the following:
Director or designee of the City of New Orleans Office of Youth and Families;
Director or designee of the Office of Family Services;
Regional Director or designee of the Office of Juvenile Justice;
Executive Director or designee of the New Orleans Public Library;
Representative of local business community;
Juvenile Public Defender for Orleans Parish or designee;
Representative of local nonprofit providing services to children (out of school time);
Representative of local nonprofit providing services to children (out of school youth);
Representative of local nonprofit providing services to children (early childhood); and
Representative of local nonprofit providing services to children (special needs).
Appointees to the Youth Advisory Board will be selected annually by the Children and Youth Planning Board or its Executive Director.
Council Celebrates Accomplishments of Ruth Bader Ginsburg
The Council adopted Resolution R-20-312 honoring the life's work of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg following her passing on September 18. Ginsburg was a faithful public servant, American icon, crusader for women's rights, and legal scholar with one most remarkable careers in the history of American law.
She began building her legacy in the 1970s as a litigator with the American Civil Liberties Union, where she and others won a string of groundbreaking equal protection cases that helped open doors to women. Justice Ginsburg was a tireless advocate for our country's most vulnerable. From ending single-sex admission policies and protecting rights for those with mental disabilities to her dissents standing up for voting rights and paving the way for Congress to pass the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which strengthens protections against pay discrimination.
"To me, and countless others both here in the U.S. and across the globe, Ruth Bader Ginsburg was a hero. As a judge, she worked relentlessly and meticulously to ensure that this country's legal system lives up to its ideals and extends its rights and protections to those once excluded. She left a significant mark on everyday life in America, and her legacy will always be intertwined in the freedoms and rights that countless Americans are granted today," said Councilmember Helena Moreno.
The Council encourages members of the public to join them in honoring her by donating or volunteering time to any of the local organizations listed below.
Infrastructure and Drainage Improvements Coming to Downtown
The Council approved Ordinance 33,130 to allow and facilitate infrastructure improvement projects in the Downtown Development District (DDD). A result of the Fair Share Initiative, this ordinance will establish an infrastructure escrow fund from which the DDD will reimburse the City for work performed according to a mutually beneficial two-year plan.
The proposed enhancements will substantially benefit all those who frequent the Downtown area, including residents, visitors, and workers, by improving quality of life, increasing property values, and serving as a catalyst for private development and investment.