tv Urban Update NBC February 28, 2016 11:30am-12:00pm EST
. good morning and welcome to urban update. i'm byron barnett. on the show this morning, former both city counselor charles yancey stops by to remind us of the book fair in roxbury. and we'll introduce you to the city's newest commissioner. we'll tell you who he is and what he's in charge of. and we'll also take a look t a repeat fun gathering of latino student whose use technology and
but up first f in two, tyre k senior took a job in the medical center. 14 years later. he has become a tireless leader in the massachusetts labor, health care and social justice movements, last month tyre k was named to the top massachusetts leadership post for 1199seiu united healthcare workers east. and now directs a union of 52,000 health care workers. as executive vice president. tyre k is the first african-american man to lead a major statewide union in the commonwealth. tyre k joins us today to talk about taking the reigns of the most actively political union. welcome to urban update. first, why doctor's appointment start by tells about your
telephone operator unallieding the 1199. >> until 2002 i started out is there, i didn't really know much about unions. but i got very active through my oral background, through my grandmother and my mother. i ended up meeting veronica president prior to me. so i started out as a shop steward or what we call a dell gad. in 2004 i was able to work on the kerry presidential campaign and felt then i got hired in 2005 as political organizers. i got elected vice president in 2010 and here i am today, executive vice president. >> wow, now, what are your top goals for the union now that you are the executive vice president? >> so to continue to build on the momentum for the fight for 15, our fair care campaign is very important and i really want
i believe that workers in the workplace should have a voice. >> owe know that unions are one of the most politically active unions in massachusetts. what about the presidential campaign? is your union taking sides, endorsing anyone. >> yes, we endorse hillary clinton for the presidential campaign. >> why? >> one of the reasons i think is that we look at movement of conversionings conversionings and we want to make sure we support a candidate who can move on the agenda. but 50 percent # percent of the members wanted to endorse hilary. >> we talked before durn about the fight for 15. you mentioned that. can you update us on what's coming up next in the movement and your union's continued role
>> yes, we've 115 at boston medical center, we've also won 15 at woodland hospital. so next stop is we're going to have a big action on april 14 they encourage everyone to attend. >> can you tell us a about the campaign for fair care and what that means for massachusetts. >> yes, this campaign is really about community hospitals access, we have some rich hospital in the commonwealth who provide the same care that these community hospitals provide and are being paid a lot more. you think about knee replacements, you think about birth and deliveries. these happen in gateway cities and the folks should get the care they need. >> what are some of the misconceptions you would like to clarify about your campaign? >> well, one of them is that, again you think about goings all the way to maybe some of the downtown hospitals. it's the same care that you can get in some of these gateway cities. the money and the jobs that these community hospitals provide stay in the gateway cities.
the major misconcessions that are out there. >> why should someone who's not a health care worker even care about this? >> well, i think again it's about jobs. you think about jobs, quality care, you think about access. however did you go before you're actually to get a level of -- access that you deserve in your community. so one whether you're a health care worker or not i think everybody wants decent health care they want affordable health care. >> what are the next steps for your campaign? >> well, we're going to have a hearing on march 8 we're hoping that the legislature will help fix this problem. but we're more than prepared to take it to the ballot. last year we collected over 100,000 signatures. >> when you watch the political the -- you talk about health care and you see the arguments on the republican side and the side.
way the campaigning is going in the fight for 15 and in your fair care campaign and so forth? >> i like to framework it as a conniver generally. you see a lot of these movements coming together, whether it's racial justice, the students debt, the low wage worker campaign. i mean folks have really had enough and so folks are going to come together and hold elected fishes accountable. >> are you feeling confident about hillary clinton supporting all these -- supporting your agenda in the fight for 15 and so forth? >> you know i'm confident that she supports it. but also the way that our union looks ate. no matter what the candidate is we're going to drive the issues and make sure that the community's voice is heard. >> and this whole fight for 15, is the way you see it around the country as compared to here in massachusetts, do you think it's pigging up momentum? >> oh, yes.
as you can see the health care workers, the poorest hospitals are able to do 15 and i think fogs ups that wages have been stacked and it's time to lift them up. >> okay, tyre k d. lee. things nor coming in congratulations. all right. coming up, celebrate 30 years of literacy with a local book fair that has distributed more than 675,000 books to over 30,000 families. all the details here on urban
an union charles c. yancey book fair on saturday, march 5, 2016. from 12 o'clock to 3:00 p.m. at the reggie lewis track and athletic center. the yanceys have distributed over 675,000 books to over 30,000 families since establishing the book fair in 1987 as their mission is to encourage the love of reading. the yanceys are turned the book fair into a traditional event that the encourages chosen to take ownership of the free books receive. to tell us more we've invited charles and marzetta yancey to urban update. charles, start with you. it's been 30 years. that is really amazing, you and marzetta began? book fair back in 1987. how did that all get start?
boston has given us so much over the years, we just wanted the give back to the community it felt book fair itself was started as you mentioned february 28, 1987 at the library where we are still processing about 50,000 books today. but the whole point was to inspire our young people to as you mentioned to take responsibility for the education and for developing a love of reading. because of the tremendous support and the leadership of my wife, marzetta, we been successful with 30 years of providing this opportunity to people from all over the city of all ages. >> well. marzetta, where are all these books coming from? how do you round up 675,000 books? >> well, we have quite a few publishers that donate books. we have individuals that come in and will donate books.
this is come in, such as stop and shop, star market, east both bank and just individuals who come n either drop off a check and we purchase the books. >> and when we began we actually had boxes and invited people in the community to donate books. back in 1987, but we very quickly learned that we did receive a vast array of books but they were not always of the highest quality. so we've established a policy of distributing new books and we benefit from mifflin, contributetors like star market, clear channel , certainly, and we have support from star market as well. and amber books, based out of
hundreds of books to us every year gyres what gets the books? is it all free. >> the books are all free. everyone that comes in gets a bag of books from pre-k up to adult. we have many, many books, of course they are up a in bags, and we give them all out. >>. were you an avid reader as a child? >> i believe i was, yes. >> what were some of your favorite books? >> my favorite books mostly about tony morrisonboroed and mama especially. >> want you, charles? were you an avid reader? >> yes, and i can from a family of nine children. i'll never forget when another charles yancey invested in a encyclopedia.
pictures i read the autobiography of malcolm x. >> so you're at nonfiction reader and marzetta you're the fiction reader. >> that's probably why it's not as exciting to me as it would otherwise be. >> i wouldn't say that. >> this is the first time t we have had you. you've been on the show many times, but this is the first time we have had your lovely wife on the show. she's been a critical part of your journey for many years. can you tell us a little bit about her? >> let me say that i first met marzetta on august 28, 19608 at 10:45 p.m. in cambridge, and these been in my heart and mind ever since. we've been blessed with four children, three sons and a
daughter was born ten years after our third son and all of them participated in the book fair. and marzetta has certainly allowed me to get fully engaged in public servicer. i could do nothing without here. >> mar 70 toolmark test i guess we could remind folks talk about event. we have a full screen up there we can show you. the details of the back fair that's coming up. there it is. >> it's the location, junior college and you can also go online, charles yancey book fair 2016 and that's if you want to reregister. >> what can folks expect on saturday, march 5 p guest speakers, newsic. >> well, we're going to have a number of individuals who are going to be speaking. we're going to have performances by young people, a couple of
>> we'll have two soloists. >> i can't let you go without mentioning and remiming everybody, you were it will longest serving continuously serving elected official in the history of both. 32 years on the city council. >> i'm still a young man but -- >> yes, you are. just wondering, i guess are you happy with your career? any advice for people going spool public service? >> i have a lot of advise for folks, but most of all have gratitude for the people of boston who gave me such a wonderful opportunity to serve them since 1984. and we ended our 16th term on january 4, 2016.
to be a one city counselor. if it wasn't for my wife and sister and another who inspired me into public service. >> marzetta i'll give you the last word here. just doing this for 30 years, what would you like to say to everyone. what has made you happiest about doing this event? >> well, i hope that we have inspired young people toll take control of their life. not necessarily of your life but of reading and enjoy it. pass it on to their children. and what makes me most happy, i believe is seeing when we started 30 years ago, and to see these same young people come back, of course, they're young adults now and that i bringing their children. and it's just exciting to see and to talk to them. >> we'll leave it there,
congratulations on a great run and i hope it keeps on going. >> absolutely. >> when we return a look at how latino college students from different schools are staying connected. also the city of boston has a new commissioner. we'll tell you who he is and what his responsibilities are right here on urban update. stay with us. we'll be right back. homecoming? it' s awesome. but with the citizens bank education refinance loan, it gets even better. you know those people who pay a little extra and get all the legroom in coach? that could be you, if you refinance your student loans. i can refinance, even with 4 loans from undergrad? yes, you could replace your student loans with one new loan at a lower rate and save money on interest. sounds easy! it is easy! just ask us how much you can save at 1-866-999-0218 or visit lightenyourloan.com pour customers have saved an average of $147 a month- more than $1,700 a year! so treat yourself to something
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ever. alberto vasallo takes a look at one recent get together. >> that's right. with so many latinos coming into the universities that we have, events like these are taking place all over the city of boston. >> this is to enjoy an annual event, which is a dance team here on campus. it's been a collaboration years. this event a basically for college students to celebrate. to inviolate them to come can dance with us and just to bring everybody together. usually this event draws a mix of people. there are people who have never danced before and are learning for the first time and want the experience is it culture, and there are people who are very into the community.
like, four or five girls, and it's very weird here in boston. this event is great. >> the thing that that i love most about boston is the wide arrangement of people. so many different types of people, latinos, asian, it's amazing. everything was awesome but they did one more thing. >> you heard them h byron. they want you here next time. >> byron: whoa, i guess i'm going to have to get on my dancing shoe and make that next event. with that, we're going to segue
last year boston mayor announced the appointment of morales for bcyf. in his role as commissioner he will serve within mayor wallace's health and human services cabinet and will oversee in many of the key programs of centers, including an array of out of school time programs, youth violence prevention and efforts that connect at-risk youth to services and youth employ opportunities, boston services for youth and families are in every neighborhood in the city, and having said that we welcome the city's new commissioner of the boston centers for youth and families, will morales. thanks for coming in. >> thank you for having me. >> let's remind viewers what capacity you're appeared in before. because you're in stranger in working with community. >> i think the last time i might
two occasions, one was with harvard pilgrim, and they had sponsors a forum that was focused on black and brown boys looking at how court america private and agencies can connect to make a difference in the live of these young people. and i think i cocame with others for that. and then the other time was the program when we were talking about doing a special esl course, especially expert small owners who come from foreign decent. to improve their english skills. >> let's talk about the boston center for youth and families. you're now the commissioner. tell us what role the centers play in the community. >> i think what they play is that they're a hub, a great connecting place for people in the community to come together. they're safe spaces for young people and spaces where they allow senior citizens or i like to call them, active older
about what's happening in their community in a place that grants them at the opportunity to grow as individuals. >> how do you see your role as commissioner? >> i see my role in three ways, a familiarity, a convener, and most importantly as a civic leader, i want to demonstrate an example about what is possible. themselves and the say they want to improve their lives by being active in different program. >> what do you think you bring to the table. >> i think what i bring to the table is a real life experience. probably a good example what happens when a city fails an individual, but at the same time provide an individual with a second chance to do better. >> you have a passion for youth. you're an example of what it city.
>> sure. well, we migrated here in brooklyn new york, and my brother was trying to make a better life. unfortunately i came to live and reside in a community where we department have access to community center, access to another organization that helped us. so i kind of fell through the cracks very quickly. by the time i was 12 i was system involved. by the time i was 14 i dropped out of high school and by the time i was 16, i had no other choice than to roll with my boys in that kind of lifestyle. unfortunately i would become the very first victims as i like to say it on the war on drugs bill and i would be on that wave of young men who would get a ten year mandatory sentence. at the age of 20 i watched the news from my jail cell and heard about a young man who opened fire on two boston police officers.
was my brother and my transformation began. 21 years ago i was released from prison and came back to a community that was really well organized but very hesitant about welcoming me back. i came back to a pool of issues and stigmas that are connected to being an ex-convict. and i was approached by a group of youth workers and and individual who is saw potential in me to do something more for my community. because i also came back to the intentions to make amends. and i remember immediating chops porter, one of the original street workers of the both center for youth and families who took me under his wing and put me on the path that i'm on today. >> do you have any advice or insights for young men in your situation, coming back into society after having served time?
what chops porter shared to me. keep it real. be real to yourself, understand that you're going to hit more blocks before you can see any doors open. but the thing is to stay focus and make sure that you're keeping that dry inside of you to kind of push forward and find the opportunities that are going to benefit you. and define success under your own measures, not by anybody else's, and that's the thing i that tend to work with young people. >> now, these boston centers for youth and families, you're the commissioner, again, which is an amazing journey you have there. these centers are in all neighborhoods all over the city insurance. >> e-, there's no total 35 facilities, 17 of them have pools and i believe we have one beach. and my mother jokingly told me i hope you're going to put some palm trees in. but each of the centers, you'll
as far as afterschool programs, senior programs, but they also adapt the meet the needs in the community and develop programs for specific populateses who sometimes need something a little different. >> and what are some of the important contributions you're hoping that these centers will provide for the city? >> well, what i'm hoping is that i'm not -- one of the things i praise that i'm not coming in and finding a system that's broken or an organization that's broken. i think there's a lot of good people doing good work that's equating to some great out comings for some of the good folks of the city of boston. so i'm looking for the next couple of weeks to really look, listen, learn, and hopefully from that experience, form what my ability to lead is going to be. i think that i have a great team who's going to be working with me to make sure that we do some really good stuff for the
>> okay, will morales, the new commissioner for the boston centers for youth and families in the city. good luck in your new endeavor. >> thank you. >> and you have a lot of great experience to impart to some of these young people. i'm sure you're going to do a great job job. thank you for coming in. well, that's it for this edition of urban update. i'm byron barnett and have a
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