"Occupy the Hood": Black Protesters Start Chapter to
Educate, Diversify OWS
By Julianne Escobedo Shepherd
October 8, 2011
This week, Colorlines reported on the top six American
cities in which blacks and Latinos are living in
poverty that rivals that of the Great Depression.
[http://tinyurl.com/4yqxr5o] If there was ever a time
to rebel against Wall Street, it's now. Yet many have
observed that the OWS proceedings have been largely
white, or at the very least devoid of the kind of
diversity that makes New York City great. Now, two
Queens men hope to change that by starting Occupy the
Hood-a solidarity group that means to educate poor
blacks and Latinos as to why a successful OWS will have
the most significant impact on their communities.
Founded by Malik Rhasaan, 39 of Queens, N.Y., and
Ife Johari Uhuru, 35, based in Detroit,
@OccupyTheHood has close to 3,500 followers on
Twitter, the growing support of notable figures and
a cadre of volunteers devoted to getting the word
out about the cause of the protests to African
Americans and Latinos.
Rhasaan told Loop 21, Occupy The Hood has six core
volunteers, but he's already seen "Occupy The Hood"
carried by people he's never met
Like many others, he was initially just curious
about the protests.
"It was a news story and I've always been
interested in what's going on in our country,"
Rhassan said via phone from the protests, where a
police officer had asked him to move along. "I was
just going down and really, just being nosy to see
how honest it was. I realized there was a solid
movement but that there weren't enough black and
@OccupytheHood is Rhassan's first Twitter account, and
since he created it he has linked with thousands of
followers, including Cornel West. He said he wants to
use the account "as a springboard to address other
things, whether it be crime or health issues in our
communities. But we in the inner-city doesn't know how
this pertains to us. We don't tie our issues to Wall
Street." To get involved email [log in to unmask]
Watch a video interview:
@OccupyTheHood, Occupy Wall Street from adele pham on
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