Many Problems Remain Unsolved
|Item ID||Egyptian19680220Many.tif |
|Title||Many Problems Remain Unsolved |
|Author||Inez Rencher |
|Description||Negro Leader Reviews City's Growth |
|Original Publication Source||Daily Egyptian |
|Date||1968 February 20 |
|Digital File Format||.TIF (Tagged Image Format) |
|Digital File Publisher||Special Collections Research Center, Morris Library, Southern Illinois University Carbondale |
|Rights Statement||All copyrights held by Southern Illinois University Carbondale. For permission to reproduce, distribute, or otherwise use this image, please contact the Special Collections Research Center, Morris Library, Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Phone: + 1 (618) 453-2516. Email: http://reftrack.lib.siu.edu/reft100.aspx?key=SCRCEmail&cllcid=SCRR |
|Collection||Daily Egyptian Diversity News Archive (Southern Illinois University Carbondale) |
|Transcript||Many Problems Remain Unsolved|
Negro Leader Reviews City's Growth
By Inez Rencher
Changes in social, economic and political conditions in Carbondale during the past 12 years have been noted by the Rev. Lenus Turley, chiufch and community leader.
"When I came here, the town of Carbondale was totally segregated, " the Negro leader recalled.
Turley, 63, who served as the first chairman of the city's Human Relations C ommission, said that when he came to Carbondale in 1956, Negroes were not served in any of the city's restaurants, hotels, motels or other public places. He said after a certain hour at night Negroes were not even allowed on the west side town and othdr places for fear of attack by whites.
"We have a very healthy growth here in Carbondale, '' he contended. This growth, he
pointed out, has come without racial incident.
A member of the Carbondale Citizens Advisory Committee and the Sub-committee of Minority Housing, Turley said the threat of riot by the residents of Che predominantly Negro northeast section of town could have been disastrous last summer had it not been dealt with intelligently.
"Riots were happening everyplace else, and we could not escape at least the threat of" them in Carbondale, " he
The threat, he said, caused businessmen and the townspeople to come together In awareness of the problem facing them.
"Perhaps some good came of the 'little threat', " he said. "I feel that the city is ready and willing to cooperate with the mayor in finding solutions to these problems."
He said the period of unrest upset the apathy of the whites and the complacency of the older Negroes. As a result of efforts of the mayor, city officials and residents, more Negroes and a recognition of their problems were included In the mainstream of city affairs.
Turley also said the economic status of the Negro is not good, but is much better
than in the past, and is improving dally,
"Negroes are now enjoying posltiona that 10 years ago were not available, '' he said.
Agencies which have recently employed Negroes In higher positions, he said, include the banks, the telephone company, the Central Illinois Public Service Co. and several other downtown businesses.
''We haven't gone far beyond the 'token' aspect of this, Turley emphasized, "but we are making gains."
Because of the change In hiring practices, he said, many Negroes in the Northeast section of town are now remodeling their homes without federal aid that has been offered.
"There has been a change In the attitude of the lending agencies, " he explained. "They are no longer dealing primarily on color, "
Even greater peace and stability can be brought to the town, Turley contended, once the mayor's newly proposed city ami-poverty program is Implemented. However, the program has met opposition from persons who feel that agencies are already available to execute the mayor's proposals.
"I do not agree, " Turley said concerning the opposition's argument. "I feel that the proposed program and the workers are essential and relevant."
He said that one of the major problems, which the proposed program takes into consideration, is the lack of jobs for the young people who are left on the streets during the summer months when they are not in school.
"This program will meet the needs of the young people, not as welfare recipeints, but as workers with dignity, " he adeed. I added.
Turley voiced several suggestions for improvements in the city's political structure. He said he felt generally that the political'' spotlight" should be turned off the northeast section of town and that there should be greater representation of all taxpayers and property owners.
In view of the acknowledged accomplishments of the city, he said there are still too many promises given northeast residents with too few results.
He also pointed out that the only elected Negro representatives in the city government are the precinct committeemen, who have "no dialogue'' with the city administration. He stressed that there are no Negro councilmen or high level representatives in the city government, besides the university affiliated and appointed assls-
tant to the mayor, John
Turley said another problem is a recognizable com¬ munications gap between groups of residents and between the city and the residents. He said the gap is widening between the youths and the adult Negroes, as well as between the whites and the Negroes in general.
"Somehow there will have to be dialogue between them, " he said, as a major step toward alleviating this basic problem. |
"The administration is competent and realistic, " Turley added, although he said the communications problem may have been overlooked. "Maybe they (city administration) are expecting too much too soon, ".
Serving as pastor of the Rockhill Baptist Church, on the corner of East Monroe and North Marion, the Rev. Turley is also a member of the Carbondale Ministerial Association, director of the Student Christian Foundation, first vice president of the national Baptist Convention of Illinois and moderator of the Mt-Olive Baptist District Association.
He also has the distinction of having served as the first Negro chaplain of the Illinois State Senate, and he presently serves on the regional advisory committee of Family and Child Services and on the board of the Jackson County Mental Health Society.