City of Los Angeles Establishes "Executive Task Force", First Step Toward Creation of Youth Development Department
By: Miranda Ynez
On Wednesday March 22, The Los Angeles City Council voted to pass the Invest in Youth motion, sponsored by Councilmembers Monica Ramirez (CD7) and José Huizar (CD14), as well as other members of the Los Angeles City Council, to establish an “Executive Task Force” that will work on a comprehensive youth development strategy for the City. The result of this vote will allow the City of Los Angeles to explore how best to support young people and is the first step toward the creation of a citywide Youth Development Department.
“SHG is proud to advocate for youth in our City as part of this coalition. The results of this task force have the power to positively impact generations to come,” said SHG Executive Director, Betty Avila.
Community organizations from across Los Angeles gathered at L.A. City Hall to campaign for the youth department through testimonials, data and the significance of such a department on its future workforce. This Task Force is important for several reasons. According to the American Community Survey, youth programs in Los Angeles are spread across 26 departments without a central strategy. This spending pattern is dangerous as 200,000 youth live in poverty, 68,000 are disconnected from school and job opportunities, and over 3,000 are homeless. A majority of these young people and Black and Latino youth in Boyle Heights, South Los Angeles and Pacoima.
The approval of a task force is a huge win for the Invest in Youth Coalition because it will create a department that gives young people meaningful opportunities for employment, leadership development, and career planning. This action wouldn’t be possible without the advocacy from the Invest in Youth Coalition that is supported by organizations associated with the Boyle Heights Building Healthy Communities health equity campaign, and most importantly the support from our local youth and community members.
The #InvestInYouth coalition consists of Self Help Graphics & Art @SHG1970, Legacy LA @legacy_la, Big Citizen Hub @bigcitizenhub, LA Voice, Advancement Project @advancementproject, East Los Angeles Women’s Center @elawc, Alliance for California Traditional Arts @caltradarts, Casa 0101 @Casa0101, East Los Angeles Community Corporation @elaccorg, and Company of Angels @coangels.
Join the movement today! www.investinyouthco.com.
Miranda Ynez is a Self Help Graphics & Art Project Manager and an Arts Management
professional committed to increasing participation in the arts and culture through our local
communities. Jennifer Cuevas contributed to this story.