Swearing-In of Former Police Officer to Columbus Council Delayed Amid Uncertainty

By Kirsten J. Barnes

The swearing-in of former Columbus Police Officer Byron Hickey to the Columbus Council has been postponed, though the reason for the delay is unclear. Hickey was chosen to fill the unexpired term of late Councilor Jerry "Pops" Barnes, but concerns about his retirement and pension, as well as previous suggestions for the seat, including Barnes' daughter Simi and former Rep. Calvin Smyre, have complicated the appointment process.

Why this is important to the Black and Hispanic community: This news article is significant to the Black and Brown community because it highlights ongoing challenges in political representation and potential biases in decision-making processes. The postponed swearing-in of Byron Hickey, a former police officer who won a discrimination case, raises concerns about transparency and fairness in governance, while the community's call for Simi Barnes to fill her late father's council seat underscores the importance of continuing advocacy for equitable representation and leadership.

Georgia Voters Demand Wage Reform as Cost of Living Crisis Deepens

By Janell Williams

In the latest 2024 election results, an overwhelming 94% of Georgia voters expressed that current wages are insufficient to cover the rising cost of living, including housing and healthcare. This consensus highlights the urgent need for economic reforms to address wage stagnation and the widening gap between earnings and living expenses. Legislators and advocacy groups are pushing for immediate action to increase the minimum wage to $15 per hour to ensure financial stability for workers across the state.

Why this is important to the Black and Hispanic community: This news article is crucial for the black and brown community as it highlights the disproportionate impact of inadequate wages on marginalized groups in Georgia. With rising living costs and a minimum wage that falls far short of meeting basic needs, many individuals from these communities face heightened financial challenges, perpetuating economic inequalities. The call for wage reform and legislative action reflects a collective effort to address systemic barriers to economic stability and uplift marginalized voices in the pursuit of fair and equitable opportunities for all.

Highside Market Hosts Free Concerts to Celebrate Black Music Month

By Leslie Hudgins

In celebration of Black Music Month, Columbus' Highside Market is hosting free monthly concerts featuring diverse performances, like those by jazz musician Charlie Ray, to foster community spirit through music. These events aim to bring people together and celebrate cultural diversity, emphasizing music's unifying power.

Why this is important to the Black and Hispanic community: This news article is significant to the Black and brown community as it highlights the celebration of Black Music Month, recognizing the vital contributions of Black artists to American culture. By featuring free concerts and community events in Columbus, it emphasizes the role of Black music in fostering unity and providing inclusive spaces that celebrate cultural diversity and collective joy.

Center Stage: Meet Dewayne Webb | Faith-Based Fitness Guru

By Leslie Hudgins

Welcome to Center Stage, a column dedicated to uncovering and celebrating the hidden gems within our community. Each month, we will shine a light on the up-and-coming leaders, innovative local business owners, and passionate entrepreneurs who bring unique flavors, services, and vitality to our community. Join us as we delve into their inspiring stories and uncover the remarkable contributions they make, reminding us of the power of local ingenuity and dedication.

Why this is important to the Black and Hispanic community: This news article is crucial for the Black and brown community as it highlights Dewayne Webb’s dedication to making fitness accessible through his nonprofit, All About Change Fitness. By providing free workouts and holistic support, Webb’s organization addresses the barriers to health and wellness that many in underserved communities face, promoting physical and mental well-being for all.

What Mystery? There was no “Mystery” at Columbus Council. Just Follow the Money

By Wane Hailes

The appointment of Byron Hickey as Columbus' District 1 councilor has been mired in controversy due to a last-minute postponement of his swearing-in. Despite taking the oath from Probate Judge Marc D’Antonio, procedural irregularities and allegations of political maneuvering have cast doubt on the legitimacy of his appointment. The council's apparent oversight regarding Hickey's pension eligibility has sparked significant concern and calls for transparency and accountability.

Why this is important to the Black and Hispanic community: This news article is critical for the Black and brown community as it exposes potential political manipulation and transparency issues surrounding the appointment of Byron Hickey to the Columbus city council. The irregularities in his swearing-in process raise concerns about fairness and representation in local governance, highlighting the need for community vigilance and involvement to ensure equitable and lawful political practices.

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