All Articles Tagged "New York"
They call it the oldest profession in the world. But prostitution and sex trafficking, in many respects, is also one of the last surviving forms of slavery in this country and throughout the globe. Which is why it’s good to know that the state of New York is going to start treating men, women, boys and girls who are working in the sex trade, whether voluntarily or through coercion, as victims and not criminals.
The state will attempt to steer these individuals toward medical treatment, job training and other services to lead them away from the sex trafficking industry.
Chief judge, Jonathan Lippman announced the initiative Wednesday, noting that it was the first of its kind in the country.
Under the new system, prostitution cases that go beyond arraignment will be sent to a special trafficking court. There, a judge, prosecutor and defense attorney will discuss. If they find that the defendant is a victim in need of help they will refer that person to services tailored to their needs, including drug treatment, education, job training, health care or immigration help, among others.
Defendants who comply with the recommended services will have their charges dropped.
The state is establishing special courts to handle prostitution cases and expects most of them to be set up by the end of next month. Lippman believes the program could help thousands involved in the industry.
While Judge Lippman acknowledged that prostitution is criminal, he also noted that the special courts will make efforts to ensure that “there will be no further victimization of these defendants by a society that can be divorced from the realities of this modern-day form of servitude.”
Lippman explained that a vast majority of people charged with prostitution crimes are being exploited or at the risk of exploitation. Often in sex trafficking the victims are forced into prostitution attempting to pay back a debt or with the threat of physical harm.
Advocates against human trafficking also note the importance of mandating and enforcing stronger penalties for the people who fuel this industry, like johns and the traffickers themselves.
David Bookstaver, a spokesman for the court, noted that these services will be offered at no further cost to the tax payer. All expenses will be handled by the various service organizations.
Bookstaver also noted that fewer sex trafficking cases will free up the courts and end up saving money in the long run. But more importantly, he said, “You’re saving people’s lives.”
While I hate the phrase “turn up,” Rihanna is definitely the queen of living such a lifestyle and living it well. The Bajan beauty is back in her beloved country of Barbados to celebrate Kadooment Day, which is the finale of the country’s Crop Over celebration. It originally was known as a festival to help signal the end of the yearly sugar cane harvest, but from the outside looking in, it’s Carnival! Folks dance in the streets (booties are definitely shaking) and wear ornate costumes for the Crop Over. If you’ve ever been in New York City for Labor Day Weekend and have been in the center of the West Indian Parade you get it…Ri Ri hasn’t been shy in sharing her time back home and all the twerking that has ensued while there through her Instagram account. The singer, adorned in a white bikini with crystals and both a hefty headpiece and wings and has been letting loose with her best friend Melissa, her assistant Jen, and her grandfather (who was fully clothed if you were wondering). Check out more images of the bad gyal living it up for her first big break since the end of her Diamonds World Tour. Who’s trying to go to this Crop Over celebration next year? Send a sista a ticket…#turnup.
The chants could be heard near the MadameNoire offices yesterday as fed-up McDonald’s employees protested their wages in New York City. Fast food strikes are sprouting throughout the United States and have now reached a total of nine cities, reports ThinkProgress.
The fast food industry has swollen 58 percent since the recession, according to NBC News, the sector with the largest growth compared to mid-and-high paying jobs. But the painfully low wages that fast food corporations offer has forced two new cities, Kansas City and Flint, Michigan, to join the fight against the unsustainable wages.
Just last week, McDonald’s unintentionally broadcast how difficult it is to live off its $7.73 an hour wage. Their budget manual created for employees attempted to make their pay seem sustainable by assuming employees work two full-time jobs and pay $20 per month for health insurance. This sent a firestorm of outrage and may have caused a new wave of cities to merge with the current seven cities picketing against the fast food industry.
Workers around the country are pressuring large corporations to cave into paying their employees $15 an hour; this demand is far higher than President Obama’s push for a federal minimum wage of $9 an hour. Let’s face it, the current federal minimum wage of $7.25 is unlivable. As MN as reported before, a minimum wage of at least $14.17 an hour is needed to live a bearable life in the United States. Also, “[t]oday’s minimum wage workers have far less buying power than their counterparts did in 1968,” reports Sacbee.com
An owner of a Quiznos restaurant cringed at the thought of a heightened minimum wage. “The $15 an hour minimum wage would – I’ll tell you right now frankly, and I’m not exaggerating—it would put us out of business,” Brett Habernicht said. However, supporters of a higher minimum wage commonly use Costco as a model; they pay their employees an hourly wage of $20 plus benefits. “The company recently reported $459 million in profits from a single quarter, up 19 percent,” ThinkProgress added.
“[C]an McDonald’s sell burgers for $1 if it’s paying employees $15 an hour? Probably not,” reports the Wall Street Journal. “McDonalds has said the Affordable Care Act will cost it another $10,000 to $30,000 per restaurant.” Now isn’t the best time, when unemployment is still high, to impose the higher minimum wage strain on businesses, Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody Analytics told WSJ. “[I]t’s pretty hard to ask franchisees to try to digest the cost of health-care reform and also minimum wage at the same time.”
Whose side are you on? Do you think a $15 minimum wage is detrimental or helpful for the economy?
Countless Americans are itching to ditch their jobs and venture into new careers. A recent survey conducted by the University of Phoenix finds that only 14 percent of workers are employed in their dream careers. More than half of all working adults yearn for a change in scenery, but a whopping 78 percent of workers in their 20s long to switch careers, reports Daily Finance.
Younger workers aren’t the only employees in the job market with a desire to jump ship. Sixty-four percent of workers in their 30s share the same sentiment. As respondents of the survey progressively get older, their hunger for a change in careers diminishes. Out of employees in their 40s, 50s, and 60s, 54, 51, and 26 percent, respectively, wish to dabble into a new field.
Forty-three percent of chief executives, even though they make much more than their lower-level employees, are interested in switching careers as well. Only 16 percent of C-level executives are in their dream careers.
The study also found that where you live can have a profound effect on whether or not you want to stay in your career. San Franciscan workers are much less likely to have interest in switching careers; 60 percent enjoy their field compared to the national average of 45 percent. New Yorkers, however, find it much harder to agree with San Franciscans; 62 percent want to venture off into a new career.
Mid-sized companies are more threatened by workers that are fed-up with their careers than small and large companies, the survey reveals. About 62 percent of medium-sized corporations have employees who desire a career-switch. Out of large and small companies, 46 percent and 58 percent are interested in changing careers, respectively.
The study contends that the barriers impeding these working adults from achieving their dream career stems from a poor financial security, fear of switching into unknown territory, and inadequate experience and education. “It is important that those looking to change careers understand where the jobs are, the necessary skills and how experience from employment will translate into a new industry…”said Dr. Bill Pepicello, president of the University of Phoenix.
“…[W]e see many working adults coming back to school 10 to 20 years after they started their careers to prepare for a new career or to find growth opportunities in their current industry,” said Pepicello.
The most desired fields of the fidgety workers are in arts and sciences as well as business. That makes sense. The arts typically don’t offer the kind of security most people are looking for, hence the “starving artist.” And the sciences require a skill set that will send workers back to school, requiring the kind of time and expense that takes a commitment many aren’t willing to make.
This survey recruited 1,616 American workers over the age of 18 in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas-Ft.Worth, San Francisco, and Atlanta.
As a sidebar, we reported only last week that 70 percent of workers want to quit their jobs. So this thread of discontent is pretty strong.
Baltimore, Maryland native Khalilah Williams-Webb is known for bringing style to the sidelines. She styles some of sports’ biggest names in the game (and fashion), most notably Carmelo Anthony. But Khalilah is more than that, much more. When she’s not hunting for size 14 shoes and extra-long trousers she works as a stylist for power players like Carol’s Daughter founder Lisa Price, and an image consultant for brands like Samsung and Foot Locker. Most recently she took on the role of shopkeeper at her new boutique, Shirley + Alice, (named for her fashionable grandmothers) in the legendary neighborhood of Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. She’s come a long way from cocktail waitressing and working the floor at Express and Tommy Hilfiger.
We caught up with Khalilah to learn more about what propels her success and the motivation behind her new retail venture.
Madame Noire: Where does your love for fashion come from?
Khalilah Williams-Webb: My mother and my grandmothers. As a young child, they use to bring me along with them as they shopped; shopping and dressing me up as a child! It honestly came so naturally because I grew up around it!
MN: You’re widely known for styling Carmelo Anthony, but you have a lot going on! Describe what your brand entails and what guides you when pursuing new ventures.
KW: My brand entails styling, imaging consulting, and running a my new boutique. But most importantly, maintaining my image as a great mom, wife, and family figure. When pursuing new ventures I love to be challenged.
MN: With so many ventures pulling from your creativity, how do you stay inspired to come up with fresh ideas?
KW: I strongly believe in taking time out to refresh and rebuild! But I also do a lot of research and draw inspiration from old movies, magazines, etc. I also have to give credit to my great team. We collectively come up with creative ideas to be ahead of the game.
MN: What prompted you to make the move into retail?
KW: It has been a dream of mine to open a vintage store since I moved to NYC two years ago.When my husband Richard and I found out we were expecting a baby, I made the decision to slow down with styling, and to put my energy into my love for vintage. I began hosting trunk shows, first in my husband’s gallery, “House of Art”, then in a mansion converted to a school (the ambiance was perfect). I started to realize with the amount of inventory I amassed and the demand, I needed a storefront.
MN: Do you approach styling men differently than dressing women?
KW: My approach to styling is no different. I make to adhere to what the client is looking for, and put my own twist to it.
MN: How is Shirley + Alice different from the other vintage boutiques that populate Brooklyn?
KW: I wanted a boutique that had a cozy and homely feel; as if you are playing dress up at your girlfriends house or your mother’s closet as we all did as a kid. A place where you could feel welcome, have a glass of wine, conversation and do what women want to do most — shop! I want it to be an experience, not just a place to buy a piece of clothing.
It’s an understood rule among black women that it is impolite to walk up and stick your hand in someone’s hair without permission. But a new art exhibit in New York is breaking the rules.
In something like a social experiment three black women, one with loose, curly natural hair, one with locks and another with a relaxer, stood on a corner holding signs that read “You Can Touch My Hair.”
The exhibit was the idea of hair blogger Antonia Opiah. In an interview with the Huffington Post she said:
Black hair is unique. It requires different care techniques and routines. And in a country where we primarily see commercials for white hair products and magazines that mainly cover white beauty topics and TV shows that mainly feature white characters, we, and those curious about us, have to find information about our hair from other sources.It’s easy to cite the media as the cause for underexposure to the various cultures of America. The media definitely plays a huge role. But another factor is the lack of the right kind of curiosity across the American population.
The exhibit ran today and will run again tomorrow, June 8 from 2-4pm in New York City’s Union Square.
What do you think about this exhibit do you feel it places black women on display for mainstream consumption or is this a good way to promote discussion?
Before the days of Basketball Wives, Love & Hip Hop and Real Housewives of Atlanta, reality TV junkies like myself indulged in dating shows like Flavor of Love. Although the days of FOL have come and gone, a few of the show’s breakout stars have made their marks on the entertainment world. During a recent interview with Spoken Entertainment, one of FOL’s most successful and popular candidates, Tiffany Pollard aka New York, revealed that she’s planning to return to reality television very soon. She also discussed how she feels about her former co-stars and being a Christian. Check out a bit of what she had to say below.
On returning to reality television:
“I’ve been long awaiting a hearty healthy return to reality television. And the concept would have to fit my life and where it is right now. Fortunately, three weeks ago…I shot a pilot with a brilliant production crew. The concept is bananas. When you guys see this. It’s like…we couldn’t have accepted her back in any other way. It’s true HBIC performance. It’s coming!”
On why she’s not interested in doing Bad Girls Club:
“It’s not that I’m against that…but they already got that going. Why would they need me over there?”
On her former FOL co-stars:
“Obviously Flav and I and a lot of the other contestants are busy. But if we see each other out somewhere…it’s all love. We all support each other. If I see somebody from the past doing their thing on television I don’t throw shade. To tell you the truth, there’s only so many spotlights on television so if you can jump into one of them, I’m applauding you.”
On finding love:
“Honey chile…I will say this. There is somebody in my life. And he is a big part of it. He influences me daily. I keep it real private…and that’s why it works. Sometimes when you moving in certain circles people try to infiltrate that love and test it.”
On being a Christian:
“I am a Christian. But I’m not a scary Christian. God inspires me. His whole gospel was to give back to people and to care about mankind. I do a lot of humanitarian work. Of course that does not get picked up, but when you do it from your heart….you’re not looking for recognition.”
Sure, she’s in the midst of filming Think Like A Man Too and is the star of BET’s new scripted show, Being Mary Jane, but Gabrielle Union isn’t stopping there.
According to BlackFilm.com, the actress just signed on to play in comedian/actor Chris Rock’s new film. In the film Finally Famous, Union will play a reality show television star who is engaged to Chris Rock’s character.
For his part, Rock will play a comedian-turned-actor who is trying to be taken seriously as an actor – while being a recovering alcoholic. Union, dying to become a bigger star, tries to convince him that the best way for both of their stars to shine is if they get married on the reality show.
Actress Rosario Dawson will also be in the film and plays a journalist who has a little “personal” chemistry with Rock.
Gabrielle Union is super busy these days, which is great considering we hadn’t seen her in any roles for a while prior to her 2012 appearance in Think Like A Man. You often hear that celebrity women get fewer roles as they get older but for Union, who turned 40 in October, she seems to have hit a great stride.
Finally Famous, directed by Chris Rock and produced by Scott Rudin, will begin filming this summer in New York City.
The phrase ratchet reality star almost sounds repetitious since there are few, if any, individuals on reality TV with redeeming qualities But these stars here are some of the most notorious on the tube, and quite honestly, the worst 15-minute celebs we’ve seen in the past few years.
To put it simply, Stevie J is scum and think he’s God. Sorry to break it to you Stevie J, but you’re just ratchet. He has no respect for women and makes everything a joke (remember his strip club threats?) I feel sorry for Mimi and Joseline. They have a problem on their hands forever.
Tags:bad girls club, Basketball Wives, Chrissy Lampkin, Erica Mena, Flava Flav, i love new york, Jersey Shore, K Michelle, kenya moore, LHHATL, Love & Hip-Hop Atlanta, Mob Wives, mobwives, most outrageous reality stars, Nene Leaks, New York, ratchet reality tv stars, Real Housewives of Atlanta, reality TV stars, renee graziano, RHOA, snooky, Stevie J, syleena johnson, tanisha, tiffany pollard
Even if you’re not, it’s coming to television and should be interesting.
If you’ll recall, last year, Rihanna invited 150 journalists and bloggers as well as 50 fans with her on a “quick” tour to support her album Unapologetic. It was called “777″ because she did seven shows in seven countries in seven days. Madness, right?
After only a couple of days, many of the people on the planes praised and slammed all the debauchery on the plane. Rihanna is well known for her heavy touring schedule so while it may not have been much for her, it proved a bit much for those who came along for the ride.
In the trailer for the documentary that airs on Monday, May 6th on Fox, you see some people doing “confessionals” in which they admit that it could be considered fun but it is a lot on the body.
You can hear Rihanna in a voiceover saying, “Why did I think this was a good idea?” That was probably the question on everyone’s mind, including the air staff, because rumors swirled that tempers clashed quite often on the week-long trip.
Check out the documentary clip below. Will you be checking out “777?” Would you have joined in on that tour experience?