Showing posts with label Ras Baraka. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Ras Baraka. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 22, 2021

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka tests positive for COVID-19

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka tested positive for COVID-19, he said.

The mayor said he is asymptomatic, and so far his family has not tested positive for the virus/

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Newark NJ to unveil statue of George Floyd

Newark Mayor Ras Baraka on Wednesday is set to unveil a statue of George Floyd that officials say will be displayed outside City Hall for at least a year.

“The artwork honors the life of George Floyd, an African-American man who was brutally murdered by a white Minneapolis police officer,” the mayor’s office said in a statement. “Mr. Floyd’s death elevated the ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement which has resulted in an international response, including protests, police reform measures, and the removal of Confederate statues from public parks and racist names from organizations.”

Baraka will join actor, director, and filmmaker Leon Pickney, who commissioned the 700-pound statue and the sculptor, Stanley Watts, among other officials at the event, according to the mayor’s office. The event is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. outside City Hall on Board Street and will be streamed via the city’s Facebook page.

The statue was donated to the city this week as part of an effort to develop a “world class public art program,” in Newark, the announcement said.


Tuesday, February 18, 2020


Newark Mayor Ras Baraka released the following statement defending the city’s sanctuary policies for undocumented immigrants, one day after the Trump administration announced federal agents who patrol the U.S. border will be deployed to cities across the country where local jurisdictions are hindering stepped up immigration enforcement.

Statement by Mayor Ras J. Baraka:

“Nearly three years ago, I signed a 10-page executive order to protect undocumented people from aggressive government intervention in their lives.

“I knew then that the fight to protect these people’s basic human rights was not over. Now, U.S. Attorney General William Barr has promised a ‘significant escalation’ in the Trump Administration’s crack down on sanctuary cities.

“The language used by the Attorney General is divisive. It provokes fear and incites hatred, the very two destructive emotions we want to negate in our approach to ‘A Fair and Welcoming City,” the name of my executive order.

“In announcing the lawsuit against New Jersey, Attorney General Barr accused us of ‘jeopardizing the public’s safety by putting the interest of criminal aliens before those of law-abiding citizens.’

“This is simply not true. There is absolutely no sanctuary in this city for dangerous criminals, for that would be a betrayal of my personal values and the promise I made to all residents to keep Newark a safer city by building trust in our police.

“We vigorously prosecute those undocumented people arrested for a multitude of violent, assaultive and exploitive crimes, including domestic violence, and notify federal immigration officials.

“When Attorney General Barr says sanctuary is ‘misguided ideology triumphing over common sense law enforcement,’ he undermines the common decency aspects of our policy.

“First, in terms of law enforcement, our policy protects undocumented victims. This population is prey for criminals and we want them to feel safe and comfortable in the care of our police. Our efforts to have good community relations and build trust with all our residents, must include the undocumented population, otherwise it is incomplete.

“The Trump Administration plan to bolster ICE enforcement forces with tactical units will undermine our efforts to build community trust. It will recall painful images of the last time federal troops patrolled our town.

“Equally, every other aspect of our policy gives undocumented people the dignity of recognition. We give them ID cards so they can work, open bank accounts, obtain building permits or start businesses and build their community, all hallmarks of the immigrant American Dream.

“We offer them City services to ensure their health and welfare, or that their homes are up to code. The executive order protects them from any City government or police discrimination or profiling.

“We have pulled together a conglomerate of government officials, public and charter school educators, clergy, and business and university leaders to embrace the undocumented population and integrate them in our community.

“This is nothing new for Newark. Being ‘A Fair and Welcoming City’ is an intrinsic part of our history, from the earliest German and Irish immigrants, to the Italians and Jewish people, and the largest group of all, the African-American migrants from the South.

“A ‘Fair and Welcoming City’ is what we are and have always been. And we will fight to keep it that way.”

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Newark N.J. will remain a sanctuary city

In light of the election of Donald Trump, Newark N.J. mayor Ras Baraka has made the following statement that Newark will stand by undocumented residents:

"Newark already has a policy of protecting undocumented immigrants from deportation by U.S. immigration authorities. Despite the election of Donald Trump, we see no reason to change that policy,"

"In Newark, we comply with federal immigration agencies, but insist that detainer requests be handled constitutionally. I hope that no president would violate those principles, the very foundation of our nation, by taking punitive action against cities that are simply protecting the well-being of residents,"

Friday, November 04, 2016

N.J. Democrats denounce racist Republican campaign flyer

A group of elected New Jersey officials released the following statement in response to a Republican campaign flyer that is overtly racist. Don't take my word for it you can look at the flier and read that response below.

This statement comes from the following elected officials. Newark Mayor Ras J. Baraka, NJ State Democratic Party Chairman John Currie, Essex County Democratic Party Chairman Leroy Jones, Senator Teresa Ruiz, Senator Ron Rice, Governor Dick Codey, Assemblyman Ralph Caputo, Assemblywoman Cleopatra Tucker, Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson, Assemblyman Tom Giblin Assemblywoman Eliana Pintor-Marin and Assemblywoman Sheila Oliver.

The Republican Party of Burlington County has mailed local residents an appeal for votes based on undisguised racism that relies on racial and economic stereotypes. The flyer states, “If you don’t want Burlington County to turn into this part of New Jersey, then vote for the people who make our county a special place to live. The mailer features a large map of northern New Jersey with Newark in large bold lettering and a large red push pin stuck into Newark.

The not so subtle message is that Newark and its suburbs are all that white voters fear in a community: Black, Latino, Poor, Dangerous, and Blighted. The characterization is slanderous and false. It exploits the worst racial stereotyping. The message is that if you elect Democrats, minorities will take over your community and destroy it. You will be driven out.

The theme of the Burlington Republicans is the same divisive rhetoric as the Trump campaign and its cheerleader-in-chief, Chris Christie. The Trump campaign is toxic and contagious. It’s blatant racism has emboldened local Republican candidates and given them permission to campaign on a message that has heretofore been confined to white supremacists. We urge the voters of Burlington County to come out and vote in record numbers this year. Every vote against the Burlington Republican candidates and against Donald Trump will send a message that our communities reject those who seek to divide us for political gain. And we call on our legislative colleagues of both parties to stand with us and denounce the hateful Burlington Republican campaign.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Newark Mayor Ras J. Baraka to host UNCF 4th annual Mayor's Masked Ball

The New Jersey local office of UNCF will hold its fourth annual Mayor’s Masked Ball on Friday, June 24. More than 300 business, education, and civic leaders including Mayor Ras J. Baraka will gather to raise funds to help provide New Jersey students the necessary resources to get to and through college.
“I am elated to host the fourth annual Mayor’s Masked Ball,” Baraka said. “As a graduate of Howard University, a historically black college and university, I understand the importance of UNCF’s work. I am a dividend of the organization’s commitment in providing quality education for minority students and work diligently to pay it forward for the next generation of leaders.”
Vaughn and Marnie G. McKoy serve as event co-chairs. Masked Award recipients are Elnardo and Samantha Webster, Community Baptist Church of Englewood and Johnson & Johnson for their generosity in providing hope and opportunity to deserving minority youth. Sponsors to date are PSEG, Fountain Baptist Church, Suez, Berger Organization, PNC Bank, Gibbons PC, Johnson & Johnson, Community Baptist Church of Englewood, Becker LLC and Hayward Industries.
WHO: New Jersey local office
WHAT: Newark UNCF Mayor’s Masked Ball
WHEN: 6 p.m., Friday, June 24
Newark Club 
1085 Raymond Blvd. 
New Jersey, NJ 07102
For tickets or more information about the New Jersey local office Mayor’s Masked Ball, please visit:
Follow this event @uncf #MMBNJ
About UNCF 
UNCF (United Negro College Fund) is the nation’s largest and most effective minority education organization. To serve youth, the community and the nation, UNCF supports students’ education and development through scholarships and other programs, strengthens its 37 member colleges and universities, and advocates for the importance of minority education and college readiness. UNCF institutions and other historically black colleges and universities are highly effective, awarding nearly 20 percent of African American baccalaureate degrees. UNCF awards more than $100 million in scholarships annually and administers more than 400 programs, including scholarship, internship and fellowship, mentoring, summer enrichment, and curriculum and faculty development programs. Its logo features the UNCF torch of leadership in education and its widely recognized motto, “A mind is a terrible thing to waste, but a wonderful thing to invest in.”® Today, UNCF supports more than 60,000 students at more than 1,100 colleges and universities. Learn more at or for continuous news and updates, follow UNCF on Twitter @UNCF

Monday, March 10, 2014

Newark mayors race: Who is Ras Baraka

With the Newark Mayoral election right around the corner ( May 13, 2014 ) I have decided to post information about both candidates Ras Baraka and Shavar Jefferies so that voters can get an idea of who they may be voting for. This information is taken from the web sites of both men. First up the prohibitive favorite, Ras Baraka. George Cook

Ras J. Baraka has served as South Ward Councilman since May 2010 and is running for Mayor in the 2014 election. A native of Newark where his family has lived for over 70 years, Baraka was educated in the Newark Public Schools and went on to receive a BA in Political Science from Howard University in Washington, DC and an MA in Education Supervision from St. Peters University in Jersey City, NJ. In addition to his many accomplishments as the South Ward Councilman, Baraka is credited with transforming Central High School where he has served as principal since 2007. Baraka’s love for teaching and education is matched only by his passion for political equality. An accomplished legislator and administrator, Baraka has tackled issues affecting the current and future quality of life for Newark residents, including employment, public health and safety, development, and civic engagement.
As South Ward Councilman Baraka’s many accomplishments include; legislation recognizing violence as a public health issue, the Homestead/Abandoned Properties ordinance and an ordinance requiring early closures for retail stores and restaurants to curb loitering. Additionally, under his leadership the South Ward police substation was re-opened, the Bergen Lyons Clinton Special Improvement District was created, Key Foods Supermarket opened in the South Ward providing jobs for Newark residents, and over 1.2 million dollars has been awarded to non-profit organizations. Baraka has also supported initiatives geared towards youth development such as South Ward READS and the South Ward Youth Development Center and he created the Senior Citizen’s Committee, a group of committed residents addressing issues for seniors.
A community organizer for over 20 years, he energetically ran his first campaign for mayor in 1994, at the age of 24, after returning home from Howard University. On September 27, 2002 He was appointed Deputy Mayor where he served until 2005, when Newark Municipal Council voted for Baraka to fulfill the unexpired term of the late Councilman Donald Tucker as South Ward Councilman. Baraka established Newark’s Committee on Violence, served as a key organizer for the Newark Ceasefire Peace Initiative in 2004, and is a founding member and served as chairman of the historic 1st National Hip Hop Political Convention.
Ras Baraka is the son of renowned poets Amina and Amiri Baraka and the loving father of three daughters. A published author, his latest work Black Girls Learn Love Hard is dedicated to the life of his late sister, Shani Baraka. 


Improving Quality of Life

Developed Legislation to Acknowledge and Address Violence as a Public Health Issue In February 2012, the Municipal Council unanimously voted to support a resolution sponsored by Councilman Baraka to acknowledge and address violence as a public health issue.  The landmark resolution highlights the public health significance of violence and suggests that the city of Newark pursue programs that identify risk factors, design interventions to address these factors and evaluate the effectiveness of programmatic efforts.
Developed Legislation to Address Complaints on Loitering - To address community concerns on noise and disturbance around retail stores, Councilman Baraka sponsored an ordinance that for restaurants and retail stores on designated streets to close at 10 p.m. Sunday - Thursday, and 11 p.m. on Fridayand Saturday.
Developed Legislation to Address Abandoned Properties and Blight – To address abandoned properties and blight in the South Ward, Councilman Baraka is in the process of developing legislation that will provide the legal framework for a Homestead Program. The program will allow for the city to deed over selected city of Newark properties that are in need of rehabilitation to qualified city residents who are willing to rehab and live in the home for a minimum of five years. This South Ward Pilot Program is underway and is anticipated to expand citywide.
Creation of South Ward General Assembly Meetings - Since July 2010, Councilman Baraka has hosted monthly community meetings called the South Ward General Assembly. These meetings have engaged district leaders, block associations and residents and have provided a direct line to city agencies to address quality of life issues in the South Ward.  The meetings have also spurred engagement between neighborhoods to share best practices and ideas on improving their communities.
Expanding Opportunities for Youth – Established the South Ward Youth Council
In an effort to expand opportunities for youth to collaborate and communicate on community issues, Councilman Baraka created the South Ward Youth Council (SWYC).  The SWYC provides students in grades 9-12 citywide with social activities in a safe and positive environment, while promoting individual self-esteem and leadership through participation in community meetings, events and community service projects.
Secured Funding for the Jackie Robinson Little League and South Ward POP Warner - When economic constraints threatened to eliminate the Jackie Robinson Little League and South Ward POP Warner, Councilman Baraka stepped in and secured thousands of dollars that would allow youth in the South Ward to continue to participate in both leagues.
Repaved Madison Avenue Playground – Keeping his commitment to improve recreational facilities children in the South Ward, Councilman Baraka secured funding for the repaving of the Madison Avenue School Playground.  Additional upgrades included new adjustable basketball hoops and a baseball diamond.
Established the Shani Baraka Skills and Drills Summer Camp - Established in memory of Shani Barka, the Shani Baraka Skills and Drill Summer Camp opened in the summer of 2012 to over 170 Newark children. This free camp taught boys and girls the fundamentals of basketball, while instilling the foundation for confidence and team work.  Guest Speakers were also invited to speak to campers about the dangers of domestic violence.
Partnered with Newark Public Schools to Launch the Ras Baraka Summer Youth Camp – In a partnership with Newark Public Schools, Councilman Barka launched the Ras Baraka Summer Youth camp in 2012 with over 75 South Ward youth.  The camp has provided free workshops in art, music, dance and cultural education.
Transformation of the former Clinton Place Firehouse into the newly renovated South Ward Youth Development Center
Established South Wards Reads Literacy Program

Empowering Senior Citizens

Established  Senior Committee - In 2010, Councilman Baraka established the South Ward Senior Committee as a vehicle to address issues concerning senior citizens. With the help of Former Councilwoman Bessie Walker, the Senior Committee has been involved in various activities which include Annual Senior Fitness Day and the Unsung Hero Awards.
Renovation of Nellie Grier Senior Center

Securing our Neighborhoods

Opened Bergen Street Mini-Precinct - After two years of  diligent work,  Councilman Baraka successfully opened the South Ward Police Substation in partnership with Newark Police Department.  The substation located at1049 Bergen Street is operational and provides additional officers seven days a week, 8 a.m. – 12 a.m.
Secured Additional Patrols by Essex County Police - As a result of the efforts of Councilman Baraka and 5th District Police Captain Eugene Venable, and in partnership with the Essex County Sherriff’s Office, additional patrols by Essex County police vehicles have been added to the South Ward on Elizabeth Avenue, Lyons Avenue, Clinton Avenue and Chancellor Avenue.
Annual 24 hours of Peace Cultural Event – Councilman Baraka hosts this event along with local and nationally recognized talent to advocate for peace and gun control.  The event which is held on Clinton Ave, a notoriously dangerous section of the ward, aims at ensuring 24 hours of peace, fellowship, cultural enrichment and education.

Spurring Economic Development

South Ward Special Improvement District - The formation of a Special Improvement District that will encompass a large portion Clinton Avenue, Bergen Street and Lyons Avenue. That will include safety, cleanliness and a marketing campaign that will attract a variety of businesses along these corridors.
Key Foods Supermarket - Located at Springfield Ave & 10th Street. This is the first supermarket constructed in the south ward in decades.
Shopping Plaza at Elizabeth and Meeker Avenue - Councilman Baraka with the assistance of the Economic and Housing Development department worked closely for two years to attract new ownership for the property that had been severely damaged in a fire. The damaged property sat as an eyesore for several years.  The new site plans include a shopping plaza.
Bergen Street Development - The designated land will be redeveloped into 45 units of affordable housing with commercial space. The project is slated to commence in 2013. The Bergen Street Development LLC, is an African-American Company consisting of local developers.
Opening of Genesis Hope Building - Located at 634Clinton Avenue.
Renovation of 2 Osborne Terrace

Learn more about Ras Baraka at his campaign web site: