Local Solutions to Poverty

©John Krumm. Used with permission.

Imagine having to to sit through classes with 95 different teachers before you find one that looks like you.

Imagine being a student of color and knowing that your chances of graduating high school were only 52 to 66 percent in Duluth -- but your guidance counselors each have 416 students to advise and help.

Imagine what you could do if Duluth had a universal scholarship program like one launched in Michigan ten years ago: one that would pay tuition to a state college for any student who graduates from the Duluth Public Schools. 

City of Duluth

Duluth's Comprehensive Land Use Plan was adopted 11 years ago by the City of Duluth  to put forth future considerations for land development, utility infrastructure, transportation, and parks and trails.

Lisa Johnson

For most of us, public transportation does a great job of getting us to school or work.

But the snowbank we have to clamber over at the bus stop, for example,  is more than a nuisance for someone with disabilities: it might mean a missed doctor's appointment,  being late to pick up a child or even another day spent housebound.

We wrap up our series from the 2016 Local Solutions to Poverty Candidate Forum with the comments of Jemel Jones, a community activist looking for some changes in public transportation to better accommodate people with disabilities.

Lisa Johnson

Low-income Duluthians took center stage at a unique candidate forum in October.  They shared their experiences and struggles with candidates for state and county offices and then asked the candidates - pointedly - for specific commitments and actions on several critical policy measures.

We'll be bringing you their stories and the reactions of the candidates to their requests in the weeks to come.

Here, Chelsey Shykes shared her story of trying to find dental care while a college student on medical assistance.

©Lisa Johnson

The Local Solutions to Poverty Candidate forums last fall gave folks running for mayor and the city council a chance to address issues surrounding homelessness, poverty and equity in Duluth.

Last week, they followed up those candidate forums with an Accountability Session: Local Solutions to Poverty Forum, a chance to check in with the newly-elected officials and see what progress they're making on the action steps they agreed to last year.

For the third time, the organizers of the Local Solutions to Poverty Candidate Forum turned the tables on the the folks running for office.  The candidates were given the questions a week in advance, but the actual questions were presented - along with personal stories - by seven different community members affected by poverty, homelessness or racism in the community.  And even with the questions delivered in advance, what they learned took the candidates by surprise.