On Thursday, May 7th, our students and staff welcomed a visit from the Cook County Board President. Not knowing exactly what to expect, our students prepared to extend both a warm “bienvenida” as well as share critical questions for our guest considering her role with key decisions related to the prisons and hospitals in Cook County.
Captivating the audience’s attention, Honorable Preckwinkle spoke about some of the challenges that she confronts with disproportionate rates of Black and Brown people incarcerated and only a small percent actually serving time, versus waiting for trial. Our students were taken aback by her honesty and genuineness with her comments stating “We have never heard a politician speak so openly about real problems.”
Hoping for more time, our students posed questions about economic development, mental health services being cut in the City of Chicago, and about full access to appropriate healthcare. Toward the end of the exchange, our students presented Honorable Preckwinkle with some “Albizu Gear” and explained to her what they are learning about urban agriculture in our school’s greenhouse.
Our students left the exchange excited, hopeful and interested in doing more to make our world a better place.