On November 15, the National Lawyers Guild of Los Angeles honored the UCLA Labor Center at its annual celebration. “For over 80 years, NLG has acted as a legal arm of social justice movements, working tirelessly to defend the rights of the most marginalized communities.” Labor Center Director Kent Wong, recently appointed by Los Angeles Mayor Garcetti to the Mayor’s Advisory Council on International Affairs, was the master of ceremonies. The virtual event included a powerful program that spotlighted this year’s incredible honorees who have spent decades fighting for justice.

LA Social Science would like to congratulate Director Wong on his new appointment to the Mayor’s Advisory Council on International Affairs, and to the UCLA Labor Center for the outstanding work it does to serve the Los Angeles community.

To learn more about the NLG annual awards celebration, click HERE.

Dr. Celia Lacayo, Associate Director of Community Engagement in the UCLA Division of Social Sciences, contributed to the KCET documentary, 187: The Rise of the Latino Vote. It focuses on a pivotal moment of California history, the passage of California’s Proposition 187 in 1994, which sought to deny public services to undocumented immigrants. The measure which sought to discourage the “immigrant threat,” served to mobilize non-immigrants and immigrants in Latino communities as well as their allies across the state. It transformed the state’s electoral politics.

Check out the next telecast on election day, Tuesday, November 3, 2020 at 6:30 PM PT on KCET-HD OR watch the full episode now HERE.

In addition to being an associate editor and contributor to LA Social Science, Dr. Lacayo is an adjunct professor in the UCLA Chicana/o & Central American Studies Department and the African American Studies Department.

LA Social Science recently spoke with Dr. Shannon Speed, a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation, Professor of Anthropology, and Director of the UCLA American Indian Studies Center, about the newly launched Hate Crime Map. This research and application looks to address the need for a publicly available resource documenting hate crimes.

Hate Crimes are a national and global human rights problem. According to the latest FBI statistics, hate crimes in the United States rose almost 22% between 2015 and 2018, with the vast majority reported as motivated by race, ethnicity or ancestry bias (59.6% in 2018). However, due to under reporting and inconsistent definitions of hate crime among states, statistics are notoriously unreliable, while the need for a publicly available resource documenting hate crimes is great.

The Hate Crime Map addresses this need by offering an anonymous, crowd-sourced platform for victims of hate-based assault and crime to record their experiences. In addition, the map includes a subset of COVID-related hate crimes. It is searchable, producing pie charts and tables that break down the types and causes (race, gender, religion) of the attacks by state so that researchers and policy makers have more complete information. The map includes data provided by ProPublica, the Stop AAPI Hate Reporting Center, and from published and online sources.

www.hatecrimemap.com

Stop Hate: Map the Attack!

To read the UCLA Newsroom story about the launch of the Hate Crime Map, click HERE.

 

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Left image: The inaugural public event hosted by the Black Feminism Initiative, held in February, featured a conversation between local reproductive justice advocate Kimberly Durdin, left, and UCLA graduate student Ariel Hart.
Top right image: Audience at the event.
Bottom right from left: Kali Tambree and Jaimie Crumley, student co-coordinators of the Black Feminism Initiative.

The UCLA Newsroom recently spotlighted the UCLA Black Feminism Initiative, which was launched by the Center for the Study of Women in 2019 under the leadership of Dr. Sarah Haley. Its mission is to support, develop and perpetuate Black feminist scholarship and ideas among the campus community. It also offers mutual aid for the interdisciplinary approach and community-engaged research of its graduate students. Dr. Haley believes this initiative will make higher education and UCLA more aware of the work of Black feminists of the past, present, and future.

“In the current cultural moment, Black feminism has a lot to teach us all about institutionalized modes of care, and institutionalized modes of harm,” Dr. Haley is quoted as saying about the Black Feminism Initiative. To read the fully story written by Jessica Wolf, click HERE.

 

Click HERE to learn more about the Black Feminism Initiative and click HERE to learn more about the Center for the Study of Women.

 

By Sophia L. Ángeles, Graduate Student Researcher; Janna Shadduck-Hernández, Project Director, UCLA Labor Center; and Saba Waheed, Research Director, UCLA Labor Center

This past June, the UCLA Labor Center, in collaboration with the Los Angeles Community College District Dolores Huerta Labor Institute and California State University, Long Beach, published two studies examining workers and learners—college students who also work—and their unique educational and work experiences. We employed a methodology that was student-driven, engaging more than 450 undergraduate students to collect 869 surveys and conduct 75 interviews with UCLA, California Community College, and California State University workers and learners across Los Angeles County. Our hope is that these findings will provide information for colleges, employers, and policymakers to improve conditions for workers and learners.

Two-thirds of workers and learners work every single term of their undergraduate careers—the new normal for many students pursuing higher education. A majority work in low-wage jobs in the service industry. Forced to work as many hours as possible to make ends meet, two-thirds miss at least one educational opportunity because of work duties. Juggling work and school leads many to forgo internship and work-study opportunities in their fields of study that could improve opportunities in their future careers. Their situation is so stressful and overwhelming that 40% of workers and learners have considered withdrawing from school.

Graphic: Eunice Ho

Iris López, a recent UCLA Labor Studies graduate, explains the predicaments workers and learners face in their struggle to attend school and keep up with living expenses:

“My biggest concern has always been my ability to finance my education. My mother is a single parent who works in the fields. I feel guilty asking for help because I know she is struggling herself. Education should not cost us our ability to eat or cause concern over how we’re going to pay the next few units.”

 

Graphic: Eunice Ho

The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated conditions for workers and learners, as half were laid off, terminated, or furloughed in April and May. As schools moved to minimize the spread of COVID-19, one quarter of workers and learners were forced to make housing changes, such as moving back in with family or vacating student housing. The housing situation has further impacted learners who must attend classes remotely while managing home responsibilities, like caring for younger siblings or family members who have fallen ill.

Graphic: Eunice Ho

What can be done?

Current trends point to increasing tuition and living expenses for college students, making it likely that more will have to work to offset those financial burdens.

Addressing the needs of workers and learners requires investing in California’s education system to achieve the following:

  • Support learners as workers by ensuring a living wage, accommodating work schedules, and supporting students’ workplace organizing efforts.
  • Strengthen career and educational pathways by making career resources more accessible, supporting paid internships that advance career goals, and increasing opportunities for networking and mentorship.
  • Support workers as learners by making college affordable or free and expanding work-study opportunities.
  • Provide holistic support by increasing access to mental health services and addressing food and housing insecurity.

 

Report: Unseen Costs: The Experiences of Workers and Learners in Los Angeles County (click to download)

Brief: A Survey of Los Angeles Workers and Learners During COVID-19 (click to download)

 

Sophia L. Ángeles is a graduate student researcher with the UCLA Labor Center’s Worker and Learner project and a UCLA PhD candidate. Her research focuses on the intersection of immigration and language to examine newcomer youths’ educational experiences and their K–16 trajectories.

Janna Shadduck-Hernández, Ed.D., is a project director at the UCLA Labor Center and teaches for UCLA Labor Studies and the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies. Her research and teaching focus on developing culturally relevant, participatory educational models with first- and second-generation university students, community members, and youth, with a focus on the organizing efforts of low-wage workers to combat labor and workplace violations.

Saba Waheed is research director at the UCLA Labor Center. She has over fifteen years of research experience developing projects with strong community participation. With her team at the Labor Center, she coordinated the first ever study of domestic work employers, launched a study of young people in the service economy, and conducted research on the taxi, garment, nail salon, construction, and restaurant industries.

The historic selection of Senator Kamala Harris, as the first Black woman and Asian American woman to be a major party’s vice presidential nominee, has sent ripples throughout the American landscape. UCLA’s Newsroom, recently asked UCLA Faculty to share their insights on this historic selection.

The following faculty members and center directors from the UCLA Division of Social Sciences were quoted:

Natalie Masuoka, Associate Professor of Political Science and Asian American Studies;

Grace Kyungwon Hong, Director of the UCLA Center for the Study of Women and Professor of Asian American Studies;

Sonja Diaz, Founding Executive Director of The Latino Policy and Politics Initiative at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs;

Juliette Williams, Professor of Gender Studies; and

Ellen DuBois, Professor Emerita of History.

To read the UCLA Newsroom article written by Jessica Wolf, click HERE.

 

The California Policy Lab (CPL), in partnership with the Labor Market Information Division of the California Employment Development Department, has been analyzing daily initial Unemployment Insurance claims during this pandemic. The COVID-19 crisis has led to historically unprecedented increases in claims filed in California since the start of the crisis in mid-March. The findings provide an in-depth and near real-time look at how the COVID-19 crisis is impacting various industries, regions, counties, and types of workers throughout California.

A Key Finding:  The added $600 per week from the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program has played a substantial role in preventing near-poverty income levels among UI claimants.

For more key findings, charts, and information about this report, click HERE.

Download the full policy brief HERE.

Check out recent coverage on this research from The Sacramento Bee HERE.

Check out previous posts about CPL research HERE.

On May 19, 2020, UCLA’s Latino Policy and Politics Initiative, the UCLA Center for Neighborhood Knowledge, and Ong and Associates (an economic and policy analysis consulting firm) issued the brief, “Struggling to Stay Home: How COVID-19 Shelter in Place Policies Affect Los Angeles County’s Black and Latino Neighborhoods.” It aims to support policies and programs that address inequities facing those in neighborhoods where compliance with shelter-in-place is difficult and to provide guidance for public officials as California rebuilds from the COVID-19 pandemic. The study finds that more than 2 in 5 Blacks and Latinos in Los Angeles County face high burdens from the county’s shelter-in-place rules. These communities are seen to be densely populated with restricted access to open spaces and limited access to food.

The research brief provides five core recommendations for Los Angeles city officials and other jurisdictions with burdened populations:

  1. Expand COVID-19 testing with a focus on neighborhoods who face the highest risk sheltering in place.
  2. Provide transportation assistance and add personal care resources like hand sanitizer at bus stops.
  3. Expand paid leave options for low-wage workers or employees in the service sector to discourage people from going to work when they feel sick.
  4. Increase food assistance.
  5. Expand high-speed internet access and social safety net to include more relief, including Medi-Cal, childcare and early childhood education programs, by expanding eligibility and elongating the benefit period.

This brief is the third in a series of research papers examining the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on neighborhoods in L.A. County. Previous research papers found that Asian-American and Latino neighborhoods in Los Angeles County were most vulnerable due to the pandemic’s impact on the retail and service sectors, and Latino neighborhoods were less likely to receive the individual rebate under the CARES Act.

Download the full report HERE.

LPPI Media Contact:

Eliza Moreno

E: lppipress@luskin.ucla.edu

P: 310-487-9815

UCLA’s Latino Policy and Politics Initiative (LPPI) in partnership with the UCLA Center for Neighborhood Knowledge recently released a very powerful report, “Left Behind During a Global Pandemic: An Analysis of Los Angeles County Neighborhoods at Risk of Not Receiving COVID-19 Individual Rebates Under the CARES Act.” It urges state and local leaders to step up for Latino neighborhoods in Los Angeles County. The report illuminates the vulnerability to economic uncertainty of these neighborhoods, and yet they are least likely to receive federal aid.

Some of the findings of this report are listed below:

  • Large segments of Los Angeles County’s population are excluded from the CARES Act’s individual rebate because of the requirements set by the act.
  • Neighborhoods with the highest risk of not receiving a rebate are overwhelmingly comprised of people of color.
  • Immigrants are also relatively more concentrated in higher-risk neighborhoods than native-born populations.
  • Many of the riskier neighborhoods are majority renters, whereas the least risk neighborhoods are predominately homeowners.

The report finds that fifty-six percent of Latino neighborhoods in L.A. County are at the highest risk of not receiving needed relief. Overall, the report recommends state and local governments should direct economic relief and social safety net benefits toward these vulnerable communities.

Read the full report HERE.

 

The Luskin Center for History and Policy has created an exciting, new podcast titled “Then & Now” that brings a historical perspective to contemporary issues of relevance. The podcast provides conversations with policymakers, historians, and thought leaders to gain perspective and insight on pressing issues of the day. The show is divided into two sections: a “Then” section that explores a past episode of significance, followed by a “Now” section that discusses latter-day implications.

The first two episodes present important, timely themes and feature Luskin Center fellows:

  • Episode #1: “Of Supervisors and Sheriffs: Who is Running the County’s Emergency Operations?” (an in-depth conversation with former County Supervisor and LCHP Senior Fellow Zev Yaroslavksy)
  • Episode #2: “Pandemics Past and Present: 100 Years of California History” (This episode, to be released next week, coincides with the launch of a new Luskin Center report written by Kirsten Moore-Sheeley, Jessica Richards, and Talla Khelghati).

Subscribe TODAY to “Then & Now” on Spotify and Apple Podcasts.