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Morning Briefing: The Pursuit Of Happiness

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In news that should surprise no one, a new report by the California Budget and Policy Center finds that coronavirus-related job loss in the state is affecting women and people of color — and in particular women of color — more than it’s affecting white men.

To put some numbers on it, employment for Black women ages 16-and-over dropped by 23% between February and March of this year; and for Latinas in the same age group, it dropped by 22%. Meanwhile, for white men ages 16 and over, the drop was 7%.

Like any race or gender-related disparity, these numbers are wholly predictable. When we as a society talk about Black lives matter, and systemic racism and injustice, we’re not just talking about the constitutional right to not be murdered by agents of the state. We’re also talking about factors like this: job loss; health disparities; education disparities and more, all of which severely affect wellness and a person’s ability to survive and thrive — you know, to pursue happiness.

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Here’s hoping that 2020 is the year things begin to change.

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today.

Jessica P. Ogilvie

The Past 24 Hours In LA

Policing The Police: United Teachers Los Angeles, the union representing L.A. Unified teachers and counselors, voted in favor of efforts to defund the district's school police force. Long Beach Police Department is taking heat after three former officers wrote violent threats against Black Lives Matter activist Shaun King on a private Facebook page used by California law enforcement officers.

Reopening L.A.: The Wrigley Tavern in Long Beach, a beloved neighborhood cocktail bar, reopened as many neighboring businesses have closed for good. California has paused reopening of any further economic sectors, and doesn't plan to move forward anytime soon.

Coronavirus Updates: Women, especially women of color and immigrants, have suffered much bigger job losses during the pandemic than their male — especially white male — counterparts (surprise, surprise). Here are L.A.’s new rules for parking during pandemic times.

The Air We Breathe: You don't need us to tell you: SoCal's air is the worst. The main culprit behind our air quality woes? The big diesel-burning trucks that keep our economy moving. That’s why state air quality regulators passed a new rule yesterday to start phasing out fossil fuel-fueled trucks in favor of zero-emission electric models.

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Here’s What To Watch This Weekend: In this week’s FilmWeek reviews, Jon Stewart's Irresistible is "frozen in time," Will Ferrell's Eurovision is "way too long," and The Ghost of Peter Sellers is an "extraordinary kind of documentary."

First Person: Working high schoolers from across L.A. shared their experiences of balancing jobs and distance-learning courses. Erick Galindo writes of growing up as a “freckle-faced, redheaded, Mexican American from southeast L.A.” When a person of color in a powerful position falls, some people in the communities they represent feel the pain in a different kind of way.

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Weekend Reads

There's a lot going on in the world right now, and it’s hard enough to keep our day-to-day lives in order without trying to stay current on the news. But if you have some time this weekend, these articles provide some much-needed insight into the current moment in L.A., as well as some news you may have missed:

Here’s how the iconic Watts Coffee House became a neighborhood beacon and gathering spot since opening in 1997. (Eater LA)

In 2015, an LAPD officer shot then 15-year-old Jamar Nicholson in the back as he was on his way to school. The city has now settled with Nicholson’s family for just under $1 million. (2 Urban Girls)

Many immigrant families face poverty on top of grief when their loved ones are deported. (The Marshall Project)

Local musician Emily Lacey has been holding open rehearsals on Instagram Live every night for the past 90 days, a project she’s dubbed “Solidarity in Sound.” (Los Angeleno)

LAist contributor Lexis-Olivier Ray has a first-person account of his experience as a Black journalist covering the recent protests. (LA Taco)

This profile of L.A. City Council President Nury Martinez takes a look at how she got to where she is today. (LA Watts Times)

In collaboration with Las Fotos Project, this series investigates the impact of public safety measures on L.A.’s young people. (Boyle Heights Beat)

Residents of Bel Air tried to prevent a protest, held, at first, by one person. (Curbed LA)

L.A.-based designer Elle Mambetov, who is Muslim, will have a pop-up shop in the Beverly Center featuring high-fashion, modest clothing. (LA Business Journal)

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The news cycle moves fast. Some stories don't pan out. Others get added. Consider this today's first draft, and check for updates on these stories and more. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.


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