Best of Neighborhood News 12/22: Unions and lawmakers take on local Wal-Mart stores


Union Advocate reporter Michael Moore writing in Workday Minnesota detailed how retailer Wal-Mart’s St. Paul and Brooklyn Park stores put a strain on resources and risk the safety of customers and employees by relying on local law enforcement to handle shoplifting incidents, rather than hiring their own private security team.

As UFCW Local 1189 President Jennifer Christensen said in the story, Wal-Mart made $14 billion last year. They can afford to hire security instead of local police for the on average three shoplifting calls per day.

Read how state Rep. John Lesch hopes to stop Wal-Mart’s overuse of municipal resources over at Workday Minnesota.


Coalition of businesses and organizations bring hundreds of jobs to the Northside

Charles Hallman for the Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder kicked off a new series reporting how a group of 44 organizations are bringing 1,000 living wage jobs to North Minneapolis by 2017.

“We’re close to 700 living-wage jobs right now,” states Bill English, which includes 400 Minneapolis Public Schools jobs at the district headquarters’ West Broadway location. English also pointed to the proposed Plymouth-Penn development. “That’s a $95 million dollar investment” by Thor Construction, explained English. Thor plans to build their new headquarters on the long-vacant corner of Penn and Plymouth.

Check back in with MSR News Online to catch the rest of the “Transforming the Northside” series.


QPoC actor Denzel Belin featured in Brave New Workshop’s holiday production “What the Elf!?”

Cassandra Snow with The Column sat down with actor-dancer-singer Denzel Belin to talk about his new project with Brave New Workshop. As Belin says in the Q+A:

Art is used when looking at any aspect of politics. Supporting the arts and understanding that arts literacy benefits so many aspects of life is important. Art for so many people provides agency and a voice to express themselves and can be an accessible way to learn and explore topics.

Catch the full interview over at The Column.