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LA and Getty Institute Launch 3-Year Mission To Find And Preserve The City's Black Historic Landmarks

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The Lincoln Theatre, opened in 1927, was the largest of five theaters located along the Central Avenue corridor, then the heart of the city’s Black community. (Photo: Elizabeth Daniels, © J. Paul Getty Trust.)

There are 1,200 designated local landmarks in Los Angeles, but only about 3% of them are linked to the city's African American history.

The Getty Conservation Institute and the city planning department's Office of Historic Resources are now on a mission to change that. The organizations are teaming up on a three-year project to identify and preserve places that best represent the history of Black Angelenos.

According to the institute's director, the goal is to make sure our landmarks paint a more complete and representative picture of the diversity of L.A. history. The project will also examine preservation methods for systemic bias.

The historic resources office has already created a framework for identifying African American heritage in the city based on civil rights, religion, social clubs, the visual arts and other criteria.

In December the partnership convened a roundtable of leaders in Black history, urban planning and historic preservation along with community groups to get ideas, with the intention to continue such consultations going forward.

The next step? Hiring a person to lead the project, which will also offer paid internships.

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Disneyland Reopens Soon With A New Reservation System. Here's How It Works.

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Visitors dressed in costumes take a selfie at Hong Kong's Disneyland on June 18, 2020, after the theme park officially reopened following nearly five months of closure. (Photo by Anthony WALLACE / AFP)

Disney announced more plans today for the April 30 reopening of its Southern California theme parks – Disneyland and California Adventure.

Main takeway? You'll need a reservation to get in.

Some important details:

  • The reservation system will launch on April 12 for guests who already had exisiting, valid tickets.
  • Guests WITHOUT existing tickets can start making reservations April 15.
  • Admission will initially be available to California residents only, in groups no larger than three households.
  • If you have a Park Hopper ticket, you'll have to pick which park you want to start in, then you can visit the other park after 1 p.m. that same day.
  • Hours for both Disneyland and California Adventure will be 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Face coverings and temperature checks will be required.

See this Disney blog post for more info.

Former Megaproducer Harvey Weinstein Appeals Sex Crime Conviction

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Harvey Weinstein arriving at Manhattan Criminal Court, on Feb. 24, 2020. (Johannes Eisele/AFP via Getty Images)

More than a year after he was convicted in New York of two felony sex crimes, Harvey Weinstein has appealed his verdict, arguing that his trial wasn’t fair.

The 166-page appeal argues the trial judge made a series of prejudicial rulings undermining the former Hollywood mogul’s ability to defend himself.

The 67-year-old Weinstein is currently serving 23 years in prison after being convicted of first-degree criminal sexual assault and third-degree rape.

The appeal maintains the jury should not have heard from other women who testified about sexual assaults allegedly committed by Weinstein that were not part of the charges in the trial.

It also notes Weinstein was prevented from having expert testimony for his defense that women may file false rape charges or that their memories might not be reliable.

Weinstein’s lawyers said that and other rulings demonstrated “the trial court’s unwillingness to permit the defendant to present any defense to the jury, while permitting the prosecution to develop a theory of the case that was based on uncharged, salacious allegations and improper expert testimony.”

And even though Weinstein was found not guilty of more serious charges that would have put him behind bars for life, his 23-year term nevertheless is “a death sentence,” the appeal argues.

The Manhattan District Attorney’s office said it will respond to Weinstein’s appeal in court. He still faces a potential trial in Los Angeles for allegedly raping one woman and sexually assaulting another.

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Remembering Julia Bogany, Who Fought To Keep LA's Native Tongva Culture Alive

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Julia Bogany (left) with her cousin Kimberly Morales Johnson (right). (Photo Courtesy Art Morales)

Julia Bogany, a revered Tongva elder and cultural ambassador, has died at the age of 72 — the result of a stroke last month.

Bogany worked for more than 30 years to spread awareness of the Tongva tribe, the original inhabitants of the Los Angeles Basin.

She served on their Tribal Council, taught students from the Claremont Colleges, worked to preserve the Tongva language, and consulted with artists on public art projects, like the Gold Line Bridge over the 210 freeway in Arcadia, which has support columns that emulate Gabrieleno/Tongva baskets.

On her website, ToBeVisible.org, Bogany wrote:

"Tongva women never left their ancestral homeland, they just became invisible. 'How do we make ourselves not invisible?' is the question I ask every day."

Kimberly Morales Johnson is Bogany's cousin and served with her on the Tribal Council. She remembers Bogany as a tireless activist:

"She would start sometimes at 5 o'clock in the morning and not get home until 10 o'clock at night. Just all on her quest to make sure that people knew who the Gabrielino/Tongva were, and that we are still here, and that we still exist."

Johnson says Bogany herself is painted in a 47-foot mural at Cal State Dominguez Hills.

"Right now she's on, I think 10 different billboards in in LA County," Johnson told us, "from an artist that drew her with the most beautiful blue flowing hair."

Julia Bogany painted by artist Erin Yoshi (Courtesy of the artist)

Julia Bogany is survived by her husband Andrew, four children, 10 grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.

Here's a recent interview she did with Metro in 2020:

READ MORE:

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California Plans To Remove Restrictions June 15, Ending COVID-19 Tier System — But Masks Still Required

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California plans to end the tier system, removing restrictions on businesses, on June 15, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Tuesday morning. Watch the full press conference above and read highlights below.

Newsom said that we can start to reopen with business as usual on that date — other than mandatory ongoing mask wearing. That's dependent on case numbers and hospitalizations remaining low, as well as vaccinations being available for all adults.

That reopening includes schools fully reopening, including colleges.

There have been more than 20 million COVID-19 vaccine doses administered in California so far. The state has also administered 4 million vaccine doses under its "equity metric," meaning that the most vulnerable, diverse communities have received that many doses. Newsom noted that the state has devoted 40% of its vaccine allocation to that community.

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LAUSD Offering Child Care Subsidy For Staff As Schools Reopen

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Assistant teacher Jessica helps a student wash up at Young Horizons child development center. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)

Parents employed full-time by the Los Angeles Unified School District who have young children will get a $500 a month subsidy to help pay for child care.

The district announced the program a week before some elementary schools and early education centers are scheduled to reopen.

(Questions about the district’s reopening plan? We’ve got you covered here.)

“It’s been a very long year since COVID-19 led to the closure of schools, and many of our employees have had to juggle their responsibilities at work with the need to take care of their own families, including young children,” Superintendent Austin Beutner said in a press release. “The support for childcare is another step we’re taking to help our employees so they can keep doing all they can to serve the needs of students and their families.”

Full-time employees are eligible for a $500-a-month payment for each child ages 5 and younger that is in a child care program. We’ve reached out to the district for more specifics on qualifying child care programs.

“I see this as a huge first step toward a longer term solution,” said San Pedro High School teacher Maya Suzuki Daniels. She started an online petition that gathered more than 2,000 signatures calling on the district to better support educator parents.

“We can figure things out individually, but after a year of doing that, not only are we exhausted on a very personal level, but I think we're also seeing the limits of what individuals can do and can take,” Daniels said. Her toddler son is currently in the phase where “he likes to climb up on top of things and then occasionally fall off them.”

Even with an extra $500 a month, families might still have a hard time finding care. Hundreds of L.A. County child care providers permanently shut down during the pandemic, and many that are still open are operating at a limited capacity to comply with public health guidelines.

LAUSD is working with both the union representing family child care providers and the Child Care Alliance of Los Angeles to help families find care.

Parents can find the child care resource and referral agency that serves their neighborhood here.

For Daniels’ family, it will come down to whether they can find a program that feels safe for their son.

“I have never wanted to leave teaching, I love teaching more than anything, but I love my son, that's the first priority,” Daniels said.

READ MORE ABOUT CHILD CARE:

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Morning Brief: Investigating California’s Nursing Homes, Reopening Schools, And Salsa Dancing Under The Stars

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A man waits for his food at a Mexican restaurant. (Chava Sanchez/LAist)

Good morning, L.A. It’s April 6.

Today, following a months-long investigation, KPCC/LAist reporters Aaron Mendelson and Elly Yu put a spotlight on nursing home operator ReNew Health.

Connected to at least 26 nursing homes across California, ReNew acts as an owner, operator, management company or administrator. At least 198 people have died from COVID-19 at ReNew facilities. And beginning in February 2017, regulators spent three years documenting 128 federal violations at ReNew nursing homes.

Aaron and Elly’s investigation into the company’s myriad wrongdoings draws on the findings of those regulators as well as state records, court filings and government databases. They also conducted dozens of interviews, including with former ReNew employees and people whose family members died in the company’s facilities.

Last year, state health officials took the extraordinary step of denying ReNew’s owner, Crystal Solorzano, licenses to take over nine existing nursing homes. Officials cited a lengthy list of serious violations at her facilities, and even concerns about Solorzano’s character. But due to what advocates call a “completely exploited” licensing process, ReNew Health nevertheless began operating those facilities, and is still doing so today .

“California has, in a sense, rolled out the red carpet for bad providers,” Tony Chicotel, an attorney with California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform, tells LAist. “It doesn’t matter if you’re a bad provider … You can get in the building, you can be a squatter, and they can’t get you out.”

My colleagues found that nursing homes are failing some of the most vulnerable Californians: The elderly, people with long-term illnesses, and those with mental health conditions.

It’s a distressing situation for Californians with family members in one of the state’s 1,200 licensed nursing homes, which house around 100,000 patients at any given time.

We explore those failures in our story. We also are partnering with other nonprofit newsrooms in California to hold the state’s Department of Public Health accountable, and this will not be the last story we do on this issue.

Please read and share our investigation, which is made possible by the support of our members.

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today, and stay safe out there.

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What Else You Need To Know Today


Before You Go … This Week’s Outdoor Pick: Salsa Under The Stars

Metro Art presents a night of live music and salsa dancing at Union Station. (Courtesy of Metro Art Los Angeles via Facebook)

Get ready to move (in a safe, socially distant manner). Lyrik Cruz leads upbeat Salsa classes all month long for dancers of all levels. The programs will be held at Costa Mesa’s Segerstrom Center for the Arts, and COVID-19 protocol such as masks and social distancing will be in effect.

Or, you could: Attend Q&As with Oscar-nominated filmmakers and cast members. Laugh along with Lapkus & Tompkins. Learn how to thrive in a post-apocalyptic world. Check out Reservoir Dogs at the drive-in. Sample Nigerian dishes at a new downtown L.A. spot. And more.


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