Building Healthy Communities Long Beach: April 2015
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In this edition of BHC News...
Edición en Español
Save the date!

April 30:
Placas: The Most Dangerous Tattoo

May 27:
People's State of the City 2015
Community Calendar   |   Partners   |   Jobs   |   Resources
Progress made as community members advocate for local jobs
Local Hire CoalitionWith rates of unemployment upwards of 19% in Central Long Beach and 10-12% in many other parts of the city, it’s clear that Long Beach needs policies that stimulate job creation and prioritize local residents. Given this reality, community-based organizations, faith leaders, and workforce-development specialists in Long Beach came together to create the Local Hire Coalition. Through coalition building and community organizing, the group is beginning to see some positive movement from policy makers.

The coalition initially formed to advocate for a meaningful local-hire policy to work in tandem with the Project Labor Agreement (PLA) that the city recently negotiated with the building and construction trades. The coalition gathered over 1,600 petitions in support of local-hire provisions through outreach at churches and community events as well as an online petition. Coalition members, including leaders from the Long Beach Ministers Alliance, testified at city council on multiple occasions. 

Due to the advocacy efforts of the Local Hire Coalition, the PLA includes provisions that at least 40% of work hours be done by local residents and 10% by “disadvantaged workers” for city construction projects over $500,000. On April 7th, City leaders adopted this historic PLA and voted to craft a separate Local Hire Policy which includes other employment sectors in addition to construction.

More work lies ahead to ensure that a strong long-hire policy is adopted and that good, living-wage jobs are accessible to Long Beach residents whose communities have been hit hard by growing income inequality. To join our efforts, please contact

Organizations collaborating in the Local Hire Coalition include Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach, East Yard Communities for Environmental Justice, Educated Men with Meaningful Messages, Housing Long Beach, Legal Aid Foundation Los Angeles, Long Beach Community Action Partnership, Long Beach Ministers Alliance, PV Jobs, and Women in Non Traditional Employment Roles.
Happy New Year!
Cambodian New Year ParadeOn May 12th, Cambodia Town played host to the 9th annual Cambodian New Year parade to usher in the year of the goat. Organized by the Cambodian Coordinating Council, the parade brought hundreds of community members out to Anaheim Street and MacArthur Park. Building Healthy Communities partners participated in the festivities by marching in the parade. Thanks to Housing Long Beach, Long Beach Fresh, The Long Beach Time Exchange, Long Beach Immigrant Rights Coalition, The Friendship Neighborhood, and the MAYE Center for joining us! Click here to see photos from the event.
North Long Beach residents decide on $250,000 in district-wide improvements
Empower UptownIn the next few months, Jordan High School will be showcasing a new electronic marquee, Deforest park will receive solar powered lights, and new security cameras will be installed at four North Long Beach intersections. While these infrastructure projects may sound ordinary, these improvements were created, vetted, and voted on by North Long Beach residents through a new experiment in civic engagement called participatory budgeting. Over the past year, residents in council district 9 had the unique opportunity to decide how they would spend $250,000 in discretionary funds to improve their uptown community.

According to the non-profit Participatory Budgeting Project, participatory budgeting is an innovative democratic process that gives local residents the power to decide how to spend city capital funds in their districts. Through participatory budgeting, community members brainstorm ideas for community improvement projects, develop these ideas into full proposals, and then vote on which projects will be funded and implemented. 

Driven by Councilmember Rex Richardson, residents, local businesses, and non-profit staff in council district 9 from ages 14 and up were eligible to participate in the participatory budgeting process. From July 2014 to March 2015, residents and stakeholders crafted their own guidelines, canvassed neighborhoods for outreach, and formed committees to help develop projects to benefit their community.

Following the success of participatory budgeting in North Long Beach, Councilmember Lena Gonzalez in district 1 (Downtown and Central Long Beach) is launching participatory budgeting. In district 1, residents will have the chance to decide how to spend $50,000 to improve the quality of life in their community. 

For more information about the results of PA in North Long Beach, check out the winning results. To stay up to date with the latest PB news citywide, visit
Save the date for the 4th annual People’s State of the City: Wednesday, May 27th
People's State of the CityNeighborhood safety, education, housing, jobs, environmental health, immigration--It’s time for Long Beach residents to reunite and discuss the critical issues facing our community at the fourth annual People’s State of the City. Through presentations, cultural performances, and multimedia, attendees of this free event will learn how they can take action to make Long Beach a healthy community for all. The People’s State of the City is organized by the Long Beach Rising! civic engagement program, which promotes civic participation, voter engagement, and community organizing among historically underrepresented communities. The event is being planned for the evening of Wednesday, May 27th in West Long Beach. Save the date and stay tuned for more information
BHC thanks Christina Amiot for helping build a healthier Long Beach!
Thank you, Christina!If you have attended one of our brown-bag discussions or community gatherings in the past eight months, then you have had the opportunity to meet our amazing intern, Christina Amiot. Building Healthy Communities: Long Beach thanks Christina for her hard work, dedication, and willingness to learn and share with us. Christina is currently completing her Masters in Social Work at California State University, Dominguez Hills. We wish Christina the best of luck in her future endeavors!  

If you’d like to wish Christina well in person, join us as she closes out our discussion series of Unnatural Causes on Monday, April 27th at noon.  
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