By Nyesha Stone
Earlier this month, County Executive Chris Abele teamed up with BLOC to see what he could be doing more as an elected official. Although he’s highly involved in the community, Abele wanted to know the things he was missing when it comes to concerns and issues in the city.
BLOC (Black Leaders Organizing for Communities) is a nonprofit that gives a platform to the Black community—in most cases, it connects with individuals who feel they’re not being listened to.
Abele said some of things mentioned, such as access to transportation jobs, job training and safety were concerns he already knew about. The things he didn’t know were issues pertaining to different neighborhoods, such as the maintenance of certain streets and abandon buildings.
“[BLOC] gave me an opportunity to learn about a part of the population I don’t always get to hear from,” said Abele.
He added that BLOC is the most effective organization for giving a voice to the Black community. Abele mentioned that the Governor supports BLOC, which is a big indicator to how great of an organization BLOC is.
BLOC is giving the Black community a microphone to voice their concerns, Abele said. Before, during and after elections, BLOC is out speaking to the Black community, he added. This organization gives Abele the opportunity to inform the Black community on what the city has to offer and how to access what’s being offered.
They’re directly connecting the community to resources, he said.
He encourages all elected officials to organize at least one Town Hall meeting with BLOC and to get more involved with the organization, if you’re not already.
“BLOC can be really effective at amplifying their voice,” Abele said referring to the Black community.
Abele said he’s committed to building a relationship with BLOC.
For more information on BLOC, visit their site at https://www.blocbybloc.org.