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OneRouge Community Check-In - Week 120

Week #120

This talk is a continuation of our Economic & Workforce Development series Part VIII with the exciting launch of the 'Capitol Region Workforce Ecosystem’ featuring:

We will start the session with a special announcement from Myra Richardson on the National Black Business Market Experience with The Baton Rouge Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce on Sunday, August 28th from 5-8pm at Goodwood Library.

Enlight, Unite, & Ignite!


Speaker Notes

Susie Schowen

I want to tell a little bit of a story to give y'all some context on where we're hoping to go here. So as Casey mentioned, I come from L ED fast Start, which is the workforce development division of Louisiana Economic Development. And I was there for over 11 years and then very recently moved to the community and technical college system here. So I'm at the state level with the two year college system in Louisiana. And I'm the vice president for policy and industry partnerships. So obviously that economic development focus stays with me and feel, and I've been telling people this the whole way through that I'm doing the same job with the same people and that in many ways remains true. And I know many of you on this call from both the old job and the new job. But the economic development focus is important because it is about prosperity. And we create prosperous communities by making sure that our employers have talented workers who are well prepared to be productive on the job. And generally speaking, our employer partners across the state have a few types of jobs that are critically important for their growth. So a lot of looking at workforce development through an economic development lens is understanding where a workforce shortage is holding back growth in the community and making sure that there are enough folks with those skills to fuel the economic. That is possible in the community. Those skills tend to be stem intensive skills and they tend to be challenging for students to acquire and they tend to be associated with expensive academic programs. So we're talking about things from everything, from welding to computer science, to things like that. And I'm always accused of only caring about welders and computer scientists, but that is not the case because when we have enough folks with those skills, then our businesses in the community can grow. And then you see revenues grow, reinvestment of those revenues in the communities, and then you are able to grow the kind of jobs that allow folks in the arts and humanities and other fields like that to have access to the kind of jobs that they're really passionate about in their communities. It also means that we have the opportunity when we look at those skill sets that are highly in demand to make sure it's our people in the community that are able to take those jobs. And we make sure that we are focused on equity and that we make sure that our most vulnerable people are being uplifted to the point where they can take these jobs. And right now in our workforce shortage situation that we are confronting across the state. As of right now, there are about 150,000 jobs going unfilled in our state. We have historically low unemployment rates. We have more people in the workforce than we have ever had before. That means we have an opportunity to really seriously address equity and. The endemic poverty that plagues Louisiana and always has because our employers understand that they must cast a wider net than they have historically cast. And that means that we have an opportunity to look at populations that have generally had trouble thriving in the workforce and often have had difficulty even accessing the training and education necessary to get into these good jobs. We have that chance right now, we have the chance to lift those folks up, get them into these good jobs and educate our employers on how to be welcoming to folks that they may not have a long history with. So this is the challenge, and this is the opportunity. And then how do we get there? It's one thing to have this vision of where we want to be. And it's another thing to take practical steps forward to get us there. And that is exactly what this conversation today is all about. How do we get there? And it is not surprisingly all about people working together. There are a few challenges there and historically we haven't had always the best level of communication or the best level of alignment or synchronicity. One of my favorite things to do is just to try to get everybody juggling their balls in sync and really looking at the money. And right now we're in a situation where our workforce partners and we've got Amanda on the call are underfund. And a lot of their funding is tied to things like unemployment rates. And I mentioned that we've got historically low unemployment right now. Our workforce partners are underfunded, but those of us in the community and technical college system are very fortunate right now to have significant federal and state funding coming to us. So it's incumbent on all of us to work together, to figure out how these different pots of money have to work together. It's not glamorous it. Isn't always fun. Everybody's got different regulations and stipulations on how their money works, but I remain completely convinced that money is what will make this work as long as we can figure. Jointly how to get it to go to the places it's needed. So that is a lot of the story of the ecosystem. Work is people collaborating together, bringing their resources, bringing their expertise, bringing their ability to talk to some of our most vulnerable populations in ways that those folks trust so that they can come to the table and be served in a way that really works for them and their reality, the way that they live their lives. That is what this ecosystem work is all about. And it must be done at the regional level. This is not something that we can do with this state. Workforces are regional, right? Because it comes to, commuting times and people being able to make it to work. Employers are different around the state. Manufacturing looks different in the Southern part of the state. than it does in the Northern part of the state. Even a lot of our it jobs look different. We've got a real concentration in cyber security in the Northern part of the state. We've got a really fantastic digital media and game development ecosystem developing in new Orleans and Baton Rouge. And that's very different from other parts of the state. So we must be looking regionally. I can't make this happen, but I can provide some assistance at the state, particularly when it comes to aligning resources and things like that. And I'm happy to be any sort of asset that I can be to this community to try to help move this work forward. But fundamentally it is your opportunity to meet these challenges and to work together and to lift your people up and make sure that they have access to the types of middle class jobs that allow people to raise their families in the communities where they choose to live. I find it incredibly inspiring to be part of this work. It is about poverty production. It is about allowing people to live their best lives and I'm here for it. And I know that all of you are too. And I thank you for your passion and commitment. And I thank Casey for his leadership here. And I really look forward to working with all of you. And I'll go ahead and wrap that up.

Casey Phillips: Thanks Katie. Awesome. Susie, thank you so much. And I know for some of the folks that are on here for the first time make sure you can begin putting your questions in the chat for Susie and as she's multitasking, and she is quite capable of such she'll answer to you in the chat as well as we'll lift out the couple of questions from the coalition with my co-facilitator miss Pepper, Roussel what's up pepper.

So thank you for that. as Susie mentioned this is a regional, this has to be a regional strategy, right? It's also not gonna be something that's in 12 months cycle or tied to any political campaign. The reality is this is long ass work. That's gonna take a decade or two to really to get to where we need to get.

And I know that's not what you people want to hear. But it's where we are. And I said, it took us hundreds of years to get here. Hopefully it'll only take us a decade to get to where we want to be. I love being radical, optimistic about it. So I mean that work can't go that regional work has to be led in part with our friends, from the chamber right there, our regional our regional workforce partners, and economic development on a regional level. They don't have to have the magical solution, but inside the BA band Rouge area chamber and the black chamber of commerce, you have. Deep institutional knowledge. You have policy under a depth of policy acumen that really almost no other agency has.

Trey Godfrey: I'm looking around these squares and seeing so many friends one of the first mentors or role bottles I ever had of my life, Dr. Flitcher Bell so good to see you. Mostly y'all don't know, every morning I wake up to a scriptural text from him and it allows me to level set for the day. So bless you for that. And the other friends is smiling face is really cool. Seeing all of you. I actually spent about a year and a half or two years when these calls first started every Friday on these calls especially in my prior role. It's really good to speak after Susie. Susie, thank you so much for kind of setting the stage and level setting. All of us around what workforce really is. So I am or my title is senior vice president of policy at Baton rouges area chamber. And it's in that role that I have a lot of fun pushing this organization into spaces that we haven't operated in before and bringing some really impactful work by way of partnerships to bear. We have a lot of resources and a lot of relationships and it's fun to see all of those things begin to come together. Susie talked a lot about collaboration and that indeed is what this is all about. There, there is no to Casey's point. There is no silver bullet and it is in bringing everyone together around solutions that this work actually does move forward. In, in the workforce space, Susie talked and mentioned the word challenges a couple of times. And so I'll just mention something very quickly as how we envisioned some of this working. So the state of Louisiana led by the board of regions recently submitted a grant called the good jobs challenge which unfortunately was not funded, but what it did is it created a framework for how these workforce partnerships and collaborations can, and probably ought to work moving forward, because what this grant contemplated as we were putting it together the backbone organizations have been L E D in the board of regions, contemplated creating entire workforce systems. And I really love the thought of an ecosystem. And I see somebody earlier and the chat posted that ecosystems are about partnerships because in, in true biological and ecological ecosystems, Everyone plays a different part, but the collective of everyone playing all the parts that they play, make that ecosystem vibrant. And so there's no individual or no organization. That's gonna take all of this work in, in, in just. Have a panacea and bring this region to where it is. It's all of us doing our little parts. And one of the greatest things that we do at Baton Rouge area chamber is we are great conveners, right? We bring folks to the table around solutions. And so what this grant would've contemplated right is taking pools of participants, primarily those who are underemployed unemployed or who have barriers to entry and think folks in the reentry community, et cetera. And then would've brought together NGOs and service providers who can mitigate barriers that folks could have to engage in the next part of the program. Would've been training providers or training services in highways, high demand fields that could have trained folks to go directly into the workplace. And now where. Where this organization would've really played a strong role in that was to bring the employer community with hiring agreements together. And so when you zoom out and you look at that from a systemic level and you say, wow, if you can create a system that can bring all of those disparate parts together, and they all articulate with one another, the outcome of that would have moved folks into employment opportunities in such a transformational way. And while that grant wasn't funded, The thought process that that, that created that system if only on paper is going to continue to move forward. And that I'm really excited about. And so taking that and then embedding that into the thought process of the workforce ecosystem is where we are right now. Susie mentioned some of the job numbers statewide regionally here. The last numbers that I saw were probably from a month and a half ago, but there are about 30, 32 or 33,000 open jobs in the capital region. And there are about 13,000 jobs seekers, so there are nearly. Available jobs for every one person looking for a job, which creates tremendous opportunities now to begin to invest in the skilling of people. So that Susie mentioned those middle class jobs. They are there and it's incumbent upon us to develop people, to be able to exploit the opportunities that exist. So I can become extremely preachy about this simply because I'm passionate about having the opportunity to help people better themselves and better their lives and better their communities, and then our region and our state. And so with that I look forward to the work of this workforce ecosystem. I look forward to standing shoulder to shoulder with all of you as individuals and your organizations in, in moving this region forward in such a powerful way. Casey, thanks for the opportunity. I hope I didn't exceed the four minutes that I planned on. Now that spot on as always you're right on time.

Dr. Lisa Vosper: As part of this conversation, Casey, first of all, can I just stop for a minute to send out a a virtual hand clap to you? See there? I just did it. Anybody else who wants to join me, please do the same thing. Casey Phillips is a is one of a kind, he is one of the people God made for this season in our. History because he is compassionate about people, but he is passionate about issues. And because of that, he'll sacrifice just to make sure we all come together as one rule. And so for that, Casey, for all your sacrifice for everything you do, I just have to take a moment to put in the atmosphere that you are a rock star in my book and I love you. And ain't anything you can do about it. Now, having said that, I also want to mention Suzi shower. I don't know if you all realize that, but Susie's my sister. She looks like my mom and I look like my dad. But no, she is my sister from another Mister. And I love her to pizza. She is one of Louisiana's top assets. And the state knows it and we are glad here in this region, you've had to hear from her. And so now you have the clue as well. Trey Godfrey there, I Casey's right. He's going to be humble and humble leaders are the ones that really get things done. So it doesn't surprise me that he is but Trey has come in and has started a silent earthquake in terms of how some systems have been structured previously. And he is shaking them up very stilt but we are seeing the results of those changes at the highest levels. And when you have great leaders like Adam to co-create with, I am. So looking forward to what our community is going to continue to be. And the work that Myra is doing is great as well. Let me just lend my voice to say that the Louisiana board of Regents, which for those of you who are not familiar with the Regents, we oversee all of the colleges and universities that are public in the state of Louisiana. So the L C T CS system that Susie represents LSU Southern systems, and then the U of L system, all of our public regional colleges, the board of regions overseas coordinates, I should say, we work together and we coordinate those work. That work. What I will tell you is that two years ago, we put together a master plan for higher education in our state. And one of the things that we realized that there were three pillars that were necessary for Louisiana to move the needle on where we needed to be. And those three pillars were to educate, to innovate and to collaborate, educate, innovate, and collaborate. And when I tell you that I'm seeing the move of that happen on so many levels that is quite positive and significant, but our thrust, our goal, our north star, if you will, is that 60% of working age adults, 60% of working age adults, 25 to 64 must have a credential certification degree, a other form of education training or credentialing of their skills by 2030. if we are to significantly move the needle, we must develop talent. So Louisiana prosperous. And when we talk about talent, it is not just those who students that are sitting in ivory towers that are already going through that process. But we are having to certify, qualify, educate all talent. So talent might be someone that was just as involved. Someone that is a single mother that stopped out, dropped out talent is the, are the individual. that never had an opportunity. They were foster youth talent may be all of those individuals that are on probation and parole, or have been disenfranchised at some other time in their life. And they had never had an opportunity to reengage or to access skills training so that they can be self-sufficient and independent. It may be someone on a tan role or who is on snap, but we have a responsibility to train talent, develop talent. If we want to see our state prosper in the way that we know it can. And so Regents always stands on the ready to be a part of this conversation. As Susie mentioned, we give so much appreciation to governor Edwards and to the legislature for the biggest. Infusion of resources into higher education in over 13 years, over 11 years, the highest infusion of resources, but after the highest and longest amount of disinvestment, although it seems like a big sticker, there's still so much to do. So we want you to know that as we braid funds, as we hold hands, as we come together and partner, we will make a difference for our state and for this region at the board of regions, we have stem councils. So Susie mentioned stem is the way to go. there is a stem council in the greater Baton Rouge area that we pray is a part of this ecosystem work that you all are doing. And we will stay tuned. We'll keep our finger on the pulse. If you need a John Deere to Mo tur or to bust the barrier. Give us a call. We are assured to come and we are happy to help in whatever way we can. So the collaboration is the order of the day. Casey, thank you so much for letting me lift my voice in this atmosphere. And I just wanna say to all of you who are doing such phenomenal work, many of your names precede, you I'm seeing names on the screen like Luke St. John McKnight and others that are doing extraordinary work in the community and are still lending your voice and time and resources to getting it done.

Susie Schowen: I did wanna follow up on a couple of things. I just did put something in the chat about why stem programs tend to be expensive. One of the really major drivers that we just can't neglect is the fact that skills in demand in the private sector mean it's really hard to find qualified teachers and faculty to teach those skills. In the educational systems, it is almost a perfect test of how underlied a job is whether it's really hard to find qualified teachers because they're being snatched up by private industry at higher salaries. So these are some major factors that matter. And Lisa had talked a little bit about educational funding if we are not intentionally funding education, so that we reverse this incentive that is it's an unintentional consequence of the way that education is funded is that we are essentially incentivizing our educational institutions to put lots of folks through inexpensive degree programs in order to fund putting a few people through expensive to great programs, but very often those expensive degree programs. And I'm talking about expensive to the educator, not to the student. programs that are more expensive for the educator to offer generally offer the best employment opportunities for our young people. So we need to make sure that we're really looking at this. And by the way, I am not saying everybody needs to be a stem major, but I am saying that we live in a world of technology and technology is increasingly important and every job is a technology job. And part of being equitable is making sure that all of our people have access to technology skills that will get them the best jobs in our economy. So it has to be part of the story that we look at stem skills, and we look at technology skills and make sure that we understand how to infuse that across all of the curriculums in our educational institutions. There was also a question about our employers, understanding how to be welcoming to certain communities. I think that is an incredibly important part of the story right now, in a situation of a workforce shortage. We have an opportunity to help to educate our people on how to be successful in the workplace. But we also have an opportunity to educate our employers on how to be successful employers of all of our people. This is a place where we are right now. We have that chance to have those conversations. One of the populations that comes up a lot in this context is single parents. Our employers often don't have a long history of being good employers to single parents. We have an opportunity to help them understand how a few. Flexes in what have historically been pretty rigid policies can make all the difference in the world to the ability to have a super productive, engaged, and happy worker. And we are in that place right now. This is our opportunity. And then moving forward as the job market might loosen up a little bit in the future, those employers will already have that understanding and they will know that these are folks that can be really good, productive workers for them.

Casey Phillips: Trey, I wanna come over to you and take one of the questions from the chat. How do you determine demand and as it relates to employment, and anything else that you would like to lift up and that I'm gonna come to Myra with a question for Ms. Carter?

Trey Godfrey: Absolutely. Two, two ways really the first, the most immediate way is just by way of job openings. There are data analytics companies who look at where the open jobs. Versus the entire ecosystem of jobs in a specific career industry. So for instance in, in, in the tech, Susie talked about every job being a tech job. And so in, in the capital region right now, as a matter of fact, I, I. I pulled data just yesterday. And looking at careers like computer user support specialists, software developers, database, administrators, it security analysts and computer systems analysts like these right here among those five different careers. There are nearly 1500 openings in the capital region, just in those that small segment of careers within the tech sector. And so one way to establish demand is just to look at what are employers looking for at any given time versus the entire size of that industry. The second way you determined demand is based on research and trends trends, tell us where things are going in the next five to 10 or more years. And you can establish demand from there for instance and this is more qualitative than quantitative at this point, but one of our emerging sectors, of course, and you read the paper. Probably once a week, you'll see new project announcements or you'll see new momentum going toward transitional and renewable energy. And so we've got, tens of billions of dollars of renewable energy projects that have been announced in the region in the last several months now, quantitatively, it's hard to put a number to it, but qualitatively, we understand that there's a tremendous demand there. And those two ways you're able to build what the demand looks like at any given time. Talking about workforce shortages and I'm gonna try to avoid getting on saltbox right here but we've been having a lot of these conversations internally. And I turned the question around on someone who was really fussing about workforce shortages in their industry. And the question, I think it also begs is what is it about your work industry? What is it about your workplace that may repulse people from actually wanting to work there or wanting to work in this industry in the first place? And then can we build backwards from there? Is it a workforce shortage or is it some kind of deficiency in the in, in the design of that? That people don't want to do it anymore. We see an article three weeks ago saying our school system was two or 300 teachers down when the school year started. My kids don't have a teacher. But here's the question. In the capital region, there are more than 200 certified teachers who could go into the classroom right now, if they chose to the question to ask is why are they choosing not to right. In, in the hospitality industry, which is experiencing tremendous shortages, the question is, why are people not? What, is there something about the design of this industry? That's turning people off. And so asking those types of questions, take us toward different answers than we might otherwise have. And so as we begin to work to address those, the kinds of questions you ask are gonna color the solutions that. That you create. So the creativity there is, it is always important and I'm, I'm off the soapbox CAS. Oh, that's okay. We could just put up your white the snapshot of the whiteboard that you did and we could we could let everybody get a peek into your, so soap box mountain because there's a lot of things to unpack.

Casey Phillips: Ebony asked a question that I think like hits at the center of what you're saying, what is the average wage of the job openings in the region?

Trey Godfrey: Sure. And it, it of course depends on the industry now since I just pulled data I can tell you this very quickly. The 1500 open jobs in those six different areas of the tech sector. I'm looking at probably an average of about $82,000 a year. And also understand this is that a lot of these, alright, let me take software developer off the table. Use support specialist, database, administrators, it security analyst, computer systems analysts. These are not necessarily degree jobs. These are jobs that, that require credentials and competencies, not necessarily four year degrees, and you're looking knocking out software developers probably takes an average to about 78 grand. And so one of, and I'm gonna do this just right quick. We aimed that, that ed grant toward the tech sector so that we could take Unemployed underemployed, formally incarcerated folks going through high set programs and get them trained in order to move into jobs in, in industries like that. And so the model that we created, we can apply to more than just the tech sector, but that would've given us an amazing pilot to be able to do I'll stop.

Pepper Rousell: I came from tech, right? So short version, long story. I started off at teaching folks how to use software and tried to become a developer. I suck at coding, which is a technical term, by the way ended up in more soft skills to doing project management, which just fits my personality. But I have long thought that possibly I should have gone into something like automotive. Because every time I go to get my car fixed, I get screwed or carpentry because I have a broken leg on a piece of furniture right now that I can't fix. And so it's a choice between propping it up or getting something new things that I need every day, an electrician, a plumber, a person. Are we looking to develop skills outside of tech in particular, when we talk about living wages and workforce development.

Trey Godfrey: All right. That's absolutely perfect. And I see Bobby Jones just made a comment about somebody who was talking about how to become a plumber and whatnot earlier. I'm gonna weave this with something that Susie said a little while ago, right? Because Susie talked about infusing stem curricula into all of our educational systems. And so something that we're also particularly fond of is to weave those types of things that you're talking about right there, pepper into our educational system particularly at the secondary level. And we are really big and I get preaching on a lot of stuff. And this is another one of those things that we have got to expose young people to career options at far younger ages than we do now. There's two sides of this in case that you talked earlier about some of the dissonance, and. there is no mutual exclusivity between workforce training and moving into higher, more academic pathways, right there, there's no mutual exclusivity between those two. Those two can and should coexist. I'm gonna calm down. I'm starting to preach but infusing those opportunities, both for training and for credit based learning into secondary institutions into high schools, gives us an opportunity there and you see it nationwide in practice, and it is absolutely amazing. Superintendent in the EBR school system, we're making some steps in this direction. And that's exciting, right? We graduate every year, 2,500 high school seniors, many of whom have no idea what their future can, what it could, what it possibly ought to look like. They have a piece of paper with their name on it saying that they've gone through a certain number of seat hours in the classroom and they've earned the right to go do something else, but very few of them are skilled or credentialed enough to go do something else productive. And so pushing those opportunities downwards into our high schools gives us, I believe the. The best opportunity from a career awareness aspect from an early career training aspect in developing those experiential learning opportunities. In addition to the theoretical learning that students do in the classroom, such that every student finishes high school with the ability to move on to a higher rate institution two year, four year, make all their dreams come true or move into the workplace with a pathway toward gainful employment right away in live a life that makes all their dreams come true.

Susie Schowen: I just wanna add something on that too. This is such a wonderful conversation. And what I wanna mention is just the incredibly gendered way in which we. Stem skills and stem, talented people. We tend to talk to our stem, talented young women about nursing first. And coding is often in there as well. We are not talking to them about the skill traits and I really appreciate having this issue raised. We also tend to take our, some talented young men, and I would say particularly the young men of color, and we talk to them about the skilled traits, but we don't always talk to them about becoming a doctor. We don't always talk to them about becoming a software engineer or another kind of engineer. So I think it's important that we recognize the need to put aside any sort of implicit biases that we have, and just really help our young people understand where they're gonna find their best future. That's one of my setback.

Casey Phillips: And one of the things that I was going to say anyway, cuz I see Alfredo Cruz is on. Alfredo's passion for humans in systems around housing. And then Alexis from habitat just dropped in here talking about the average income for the households, less than $20,000 in these applications, this is the power of Alexis in Alfredo being at the table and Marley being at the table around workforce is because there like a job doesn't live in a vacuum. It's a force multiplier that impacts the level of education that people's families can ascertain where they can live the access to fresh food. And and just wrap around services in general. So I feel like that's something that needs to be part of the conversation is understand if you really wanna understand how to make the workforce ecosystem stronger, you have to understand like where the people are and where they live is where they are. And especially if there is not stable in safe housing jobs become an afterthought when you're just talking about survival. Reverend Anderson, who I believe this is the first time, maybe in the hundred 20 weeks that we haven't had her presence. I wanna lift up something that she said, and I think the 13th or 14th week of this, when we're all patting ourselves on the back for getting kids, laptops that didn't have them. So they can go to virtual school. She said that's great, but what good does a laptop do? If a kid is sleeping under the overpass. And that kind of just like immediately neutralized all that warm and fuzzy and realized that we have to get back back down and things to our Metro council. Those kids are under underpass then, they're gonna be criminalized now, but that's coming up for another week. Oh boy. Yeah, I was just about to get, I don't know if anybody saw the Metro, the city council meeting in Los Angeles last night around the same bill that basically just went through our Metro council. But. Again, when we talk about California, you talk about power to the people, pay attention. I'm not condoning like attacks physical attacks inside of a city council meeting. What I'm saying is that if you really wanna watch people like rally and power and change policy, pay attention to some other cities and realize what we could do here pepper is there. I see Sherita had a comment in the chat and I wanted to see if Sheta wanted to come off mute

Charlotta Carter: So I, I'm go going back to Tamar's question on stem. Wow. I touch a lot of these things and have over the last 30 years, I have a really great connection to Silicon valley. As you sit on this Silicon valley leadership group foundation, board and so all, and a lot of the policies that you're talking about now I get involved. Because I also sit on the department of general services board as the chair for for policies and procedures. So I, a lot of that stuff, if you really, wanna get connected and find out what the outcomes, how we do that, I'm happy to share any of that stuff to help bridge the gap. But just to go back to Tamar's question as stem, the way we looked at at it is we broke it up into future stem and current stem. So future stem there's a program in the valley called the green scholars and it's run by a stem grad PhD that African American woman first that, and so we start stem at Grade three. And so there's a program that goes through 90% of the grads that come outta that program, going to stem professions and move on. We were actually thinking about doing a documentary on the ones that, came out of there and what they have to say future stem. We look at future stem at the programs that that Trey talked about. Is, you don't really need a four year degree for a lot of these programs. China and India, way ahead of us in thinking on that because they were bringing people in and putting them through these short term programs, pushing 'em out through companies like CGI, Todd tech, Mahindra, charging. $10 an hour and they were getting, $200 an hour for them. So they've been way ahead of us in that, game, because we always think, you need to have a four year degree to be productive, not necessarily true. And so there are a number of programs that, you can go through whether they're six months a year, but the real success is that you already have the relationship with the with the corporations to say, this is what we want. These are how many people we need. So people are not trained with nowhere to go. So you wanna be dressed up and nowhere to go, you wanna be dressed up and have a job waiting for you, and that's the success of that particular program. That was my question to to Myra, is, are we looking at future stem? Are we looking at current stem and I'm happy to share with, every experiences I have to bridge the gap, if it makes sense to the group.

Casey Phillips: And and I wanna also lift up there's one person in particular on this call Mary Bergeron that has, we've been consistently developing this concept called Futureproof, futureproof in our work in balance future proofing the workforce here in Louisiana and the, I just wanna connect the dot the origin. The seed of that idea is Ms. Carter. So Mary, just so you know, all of the, all the countless hours the countless hours that we have poured into thinking about this and how it applies in Louisiana in Dallas. It is because Ms. Carter, when she was kind enough to talk. Canada, California and watching how much money we are leaving so much money on the table. Folks just from outsourcing. Do you realize if you are in a company on this call, I'm in about to, I'm gonna lowkey shame you because you don't have to raise your hand. Do you realize how detrimental to our kids' education, our education system, your company, deciding to outsource services to India and Pakistan is really to our communities in north Baton Rouge. Like you don't understand. Taking those dollars and pumping them into south America or pumping those money across the pond and no disrespect to any of the wonderful humans that live in those places. But we live here. You are outsourcing, you are taking tax dollars out of our city. Out of our cities and our states and we are, we have all the resources we need to get from the bottom. And I said, and you're part of the problem when you, when your companies decide to do that. So again, you don't have to raise your hand and I'm not calling email out by name. I'm just saying low key. It's it's a shame because I said it's a big thing.

Charlotta Carter: So Casey just one other thing to that point. You not only take money from, the community and jobs, you take money from small businesses. So that was one of the things that I actually was part of a policy. That was written called restore small business America during the COVID time we presented that to SBA and to the Biden administration. The, one of the things that we talked about was the outsourcing. I have been a victim of it, myself, my company, with a lot of large California companies, they get billions of dollars of government contracts. And they're supposed to filter that down to small businesses instead they're sending that business out to China and I was told directly, yes, we love your services. We love what you do, but we outsource that to China and India. So I say, you take my tax dollar and you take my tax seller and you give it to somebody else. I, I said, is this some kind of money laundering, scheme room got really quiet but it is that particular mindset because they're looking for cheap labor. But in turn, you end up hurting your own community cuz you're sucking money out and you're never putting it back in. So you're really deteriorating your own communities when you do that because you don't have folks paying into the tax system. So we, we fought for that. The Biden, the EO did highlight a lot of that in what we asked for. We are still pushing for that. If you guys look it up, restore small business, America was a lot of that information was part of the Biden EO back in, I think it was October of last year, but we continue to fight for that because you don't hurt just the community, careers, which people lose jobs for that. I We've had people that CGI taught want you to train their people to take over your job. What kind of psychology is that? So we have to stop doing that and put the money back into our communities for jobs, for small businesses and continue to grow. And that's, I'm done with my.

Casey Phillips: Like I try not to use the word should anymore when I talk to people. You shouldn't, you do whatever you wanna do. I think we are just give stop apologizing for having something to say. So I appreciate you Ms. Carter, thank you so much. And and I just wanna make sure and say to Susie and Trey and to Lisa, thank y'all so much for being here. And I, I can feel that a change is coming, and luckily I don't have a good singing voice. So you're not, I'm not gonna start breaking out into the song, but feel it in your heart it's coming.

Dr. Lisa Vosper: Before you move to the community announcements. I want to just offer up a resource. Someone had asked in the chat about how to, or how to navigate the system. One of the things that we are doing at the state level is called Louisiana. It is a process and a service where there is a warm handle. That takes place. If someone comes to a clinic for their kid to get treated there is a questionnaire that asks them about educational level or their housing situation, et cetera, cetera. And it has been piloted in our ACAA region in Lafayette area, but we are moving toward a statewide implementation of that work, and it may be worth just a brief presentation for this group to know about what those services are, how to access them and how non-profits and other organizations in the community can sign on to be a referral resource to individuals that call in to say, I wanna be a. I want to be an electrician. Where can I go? What do I do? I need to go back to school. I have some college, no degree, and it is not go down the street. It's wait a minute. Let me put a ticket in the system for you. And then it's a warm handoff to the next partner. Who's waiting for them on the other side. So we are doing a lot of work at the state level preparing for that rollout. But I think it may be worthwhile to share that with this group in a bit more detail.

Pepper Rousell: Timing of people it is so fun to see the right people in the right places at the right time to do something transformative.

Trey Godfrey: And so looking forward, I just made some connections in the chat with some folks I hadn't met on October 4th that I just wanna lift that up again please come and meet with us. I look forward to listening and learning from all of you. And speaking of the people, there's one who I meant to elevate earlier. And it just slipped my mind talking about the right person at the right place. Amanda Stanley who's at our local workforce board here in the capital region is an absolute rock star. She's pushing that system in really good ways. And she has probably the hardest job on this whole call. I don't envy her but certainly Matt, I wanna lift you up in the work that you do.

Pepper Rousell: Thank y'all so much. I really appreciate you being here. And with that said it is nine 40. We're gonna move to community announcements. What we got going on this weekend, y'all.

Zoom Chat

08:33:33 From Patrisha’s iPhone to Everyone:

Amen!! Let’s Get Bold! Good Morning!

08:34:32 From Bobby Jones to Everyone:


08:35:59 From Charlotta Carter to Everyone:

Can you send information on how to get connected - Black Chamber

08:39:45 From One Rouge to Everyone:


08:40:01 From Myra Richardson to Everyone:

Baton Rouge Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce ( or follow us on instagram @brmbcc or

Black Business Block Party - Sunday, August 28th, 5-8pm at The Main Library off of Goodwood Library

Food trucks, business networking, kids zone, community partners, live music and more!

Rsvp here:

08:40:53 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Thanks, Myra.

08:41:57 From Myra Richardson to Everyone:

Funeral Services for Rinaldi Jacobs Sr.

Living Faith at 11am

08:42:14 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Create propserous commun9ties by making sure we have talended and trained emploees.

08:42:35 From One Rouge to Everyone:

We have to undertand where workforce development is holding back growth

08:43:08 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Why is STEM education expensive???

08:43:55 From One Rouge to Everyone:

With a global marketplace/economy, how can locals compete with salaries and skill sets from outside our area?

08:44:51 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Are employers peparing for what it means to work with a workforce that is not who they haven't had a long htory with?

08:45:54 From One Rouge to Everyone:


08:46:52 From One Rouge to Everyone:

The ecosystem is about people collaborating!

08:47:17 From Charlotta Carter to Everyone:


08:47:20 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Workforces are regional!

08:47:27 From Charlotta Carter to Everyone:

stop working in silos

08:48:31 From One Rouge to Everyone:

So if we need for the new employees to receive communication in a way that they trust, how are we, the ecosystem, working to encourage that? Are we developing cultural competency for employers???

08:48:54 From One Rouge to Everyone:

absolutely, @charlotta!

08:49:56 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Education is a lifelong experience!

08:51:19 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Policy work is slow, but sure

08:52:18 From One Rouge to Everyone:

I keep saying, policy is sexy <rawh>

08:52:19 From Lilly LSU to Everyone:

hopefully - room for both! technical and life long learning! not mutually exvlusive :) talking to the choir, of course. higher ed snobbery is a defense mechanism. hi, all.

08:52:45 From One Rouge to Everyone:

yeah, you right, @lilly

08:54:00 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Wait! I want to be one of the cool kids who hears from Flitcher Bell daily. =)

08:54:03 From Lilly LSU to Everyone:

hi Susie!!! love

08:54:25 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:

On behalf of co-chair Trey Godfrey and our partners at LCTCS and Board of Regents I am pleased to invite you to join the Capitol Region Workforce Ecosystem. As a key stakeholder in Region 2 you will be part of a statewide network of Education, Workforce Development and Nonprofit leaders to discuss, strategize and take action on the following:

08:54:47 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Bringing folk together around SOLUTIONS!

08:55:35 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Good Jobs Challenge created a framework for how workforce systems development moves forward.

08:55:40 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:

This Capitol Region Workforce Ecosystem will be a part of the larger OneRouge Coalitions work comprised of 400+ organizations from across the city parish. Specifically the OneRouge ‘Education & Career Coalition' that will “create the pipeline to take people from where they are to where they want to be.”

08:56:07 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:

We will strategize and take action on the following:

08:56:13 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:

- Create Ecosystem Partners to know one another & relationship building

08:56:18 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:

- Identify Problems in the Capital Region Workforce Ecosystem

08:56:24 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:

- Identify Solutions and Partners to create a broad framework

08:56:28 From One Rouge to Everyone:

“create the pipeline to take people from where they are to where they want to be.” <— that's what's up!

08:56:29 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:


Move Towards Aspirational Goals Together

08:56:43 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:

From the initial statewide gatherings in 2021 these dialogues across stakeholder groups are necessary, welcome, and energetically received. There is widespread consensus that such conversations and collective action should be ongoing and regular – both horizontally across regional groups of stakeholders as well as vertically to state agencies from the local level. In-Person gatherings will be held quarterly at the Baton Rouge Area Chamber with virtual monthly check-ins via Zoom.

08:56:56 From Casey Phillips to Everyone:

We will hold the first official in-person gathering on Wednesday October 5th at 10:30am at the Baton Rouge Area Chamber conference

08:58:21 From One Rouge to Everyone:

From a systemic level, how are those who are un- or underemployed tapping in when they have been (intentionally?) disenfranchised for so long? How is trust built?

08:58:42 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Encumbejt upon us to develop people who can exploit the opportuntites that exist!

09:01:11 From Pat's iPhone to Everyone:

Yes he is!! Geaux Casey!!! Love you man, we appreciate you!

09:02:40 From One Rouge to Everyone:

fun fact: LA Board of Regents ovesee all the public colleges and universities.

09:03:18 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Mater Plan for higher education in the state uncovered 3 pillars for LA to move forward: educate, innovate, and collaborate.

09:04:06 From One Rouge to Everyone:

60% of working age adults must have a credential, skill or degree to significantly move the needle so LA propers

09:05:15 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Social status and family income are not markers of talent!

09:05:32 From Trey Godfrey | BRAC to Everyone:

Amen to that

09:06:33 From One Rouge to Everyone:

What are we, the collective, doing about ever rising costs of higher education?

09:06:38 From Susie Schowen to Everyone:

There was a question about why STEM education is expensive. Reasons: 1) Teachers are expensive and scarce because their skills are in demand in the private sector. 2) Students often don't have early preparation in STEM and need additional support to be successful. 3) Programs typically need equipment and supplies, software licenses, etc, that come at a cost.

09:07:40 From Sherreta Harrison to Everyone:

Amanda is a gem!!!

09:08:34 From One Rouge to Everyone:


09:08:43 From Amanda Stanley LWDA 21 to Everyone:

@Sherreta thank you so much - my contact is - Amanda Stanley, WIOA Chief Admiinstrator/Workforce Development Area 21 Director

09:08:49 From Amanda Stanley LWDA 21 to Everyone:

feel free to reach out to me

09:09:37 From One Rouge to Everyone:

With the Master Plan, are we sharing info on how to navigate the system?

09:10:27 From Tekoah Boatner to Everyone:

How do you determine "demand"? as it relates to employment

09:11:17 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Where in Louisiana can I go to learn how to become a plumber or electrician???

09:11:34 From Charlotta Carter to Everyone:

Myra - how much can we leverage the ability to use virtual training to get access to instructors from around the country?

09:13:54 From Ebony Starks-Wilson Foundation to Everyone:

What is the average wage of the job openings in the region?

09:13:56 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Thank you, Susie! Your statement about understanding personal needs, reminds me of “9 to 5” the movie from the 80s

09:14:39 From JOSEPH SKAGGS to Everyone:

I have like 5 of those openings :)

09:15:07 From One Rouge to Everyone:

@Joseph Skaggs SHARE! Drop a link or tell us details

09:15:51 From One Rouge to Everyone:

I have an extra soap box if you need it

09:16:05 From JOSEPH SKAGGS to Everyone:[0]=Division%20of%20Administration-Office%20of%20Technology%20Services&sort=PositionTitle%7CAscending

09:16:17 From Sherreta Harrison to Everyone:

Yes, Trey!!!

09:16:18 From One Rouge to Everyone:

act like you know!

09:17:16 From Morgan Udoh (She/Her/They) to Everyone:

The demand for additional unpaid labor is pretty repulsive… particularly in industries that are historically femme heavy (nursing, teaching, service)

09:17:22 From One Rouge to Everyone:

i'm staring to like you, trey!

09:17:28 From Tekoah Boatner to Everyone:

Thank you. There are thousands of jobs in the Human Services sector that are unfilled, however many organizations don't advertise because they can't afford to hire. If we encourage these orgs to post would that help create interest in employment programs for individuals in helping fields? This would create additional pipelines for other work

09:18:01 From JOSEPH SKAGGS to Everyone:

09:18:28 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Global Geospatial Institute offers STEM programs for K-12 and high school IBC’s with very little up front, initial investment funds. Our students are ready and waiting.

09:18:29 From JOSEPH SKAGGS to Everyone:

Yep, 100%

09:19:00 From One Rouge to Everyone:

“Our universities and colleges should be more connected to all community schools to engage students In STEM prior to college” <— and ya right, pat leduff

09:19:38 From Sherreta Harrison to Everyone:

Any data on median income??? You can just point me in the right direction if needed.

09:20:02 From DR. LISA VOSPER to Everyone:

The Master Plan is the state's policy plan and North Star for Higher education. It is NOT a "how to" on System Navigation.

09:20:24 From Trey Godfrey | BRAC to Everyone:

@Shereta we have a ton of data on this. Let's connect. 225.773.2208 or

09:20:59 From Bobby Jones to Everyone:

You can go to UA 198 Local Plumber & Pipefitters

09:21:06 From Sherreta Harrison to Everyone:

Trey, we can finally have coffee and talk!

09:21:15 From Alexis Jones - Habitat for Humanity to Everyone:

The average income of the applicants applying for our Homeownership Program is $19,373 based on my tracking. So resources to give to the community to increase their income and empowering them to do so is something I definitely see is necessarry

09:22:13 From Tekoah Boatner to Everyone:


09:22:19 From One Rouge to Everyone:


09:22:40 From Jen Tewell (she/her) to Everyone:

Thanks so much y'all - need to head out.

09:22:57 From Alexis Jones - Habitat for Humanity to Everyone:

College programs during the summer for high school students is also a great option

09:23:53 From Pat's iPhone to Everyone:

Yes it is!!! And Yes!! Yes!! Yes!!!

09:23:53 From Alexis Jones - Habitat for Humanity to Everyone:

Do colleges even focus on summer programs for high school students?

09:24:25 From Pat's iPhone to Everyone:

Thanks Trey, you get it!!

09:24:54 From Morgan Udoh (She/Her/They) to Everyone:

We need more male nurses and caregivers as well

09:25:09 From Trey Godfrey | BRAC to Everyone:

@Shereta - YES!!! Let's do it!

09:25:24 From Amanda Stanley LWDA 21 to Everyone:

that;s my soapbox too Susie - especially when I was at BRCC in Skilled Trades - I was constantly encouraging women to give the trades a chance -

09:25:38 From Ebony Starks-Wilson Foundation to Everyone:

@morgan and more male educators, particularly Black. A lot of space to work on diversifying industry

09:25:38 From Trey Godfrey | BRAC to Everyone:

Thank you, Pat.

09:26:03 From Marlee Pittman to Everyone:

Have to have stable, quality housing to really show up for your family and your employer!

09:26:31 From One Rouge to Everyone:

i'm all about bringing in black male teachers. but <clears throat> PAY TEACHERS MORE!

09:26:40 From Morgan Udoh (She/Her/They) to Everyone:

@ebony agreed. Instead we push them to behavior management and admin immediately

09:26:45 From Ebony Starks-Wilson Foundation to Everyone:

Absolutely Pepper!

09:28:43 From One Rouge to Everyone:

@morgan, if that. we push them to security and law enforcement. if we had more black men in schools as social workers/behavior management, we could circumvent a lot of the school to prison pipeline

09:29:15 From Pat's iPhone to Everyone:

Yes!! No blood will

Come from a turnip- we have to increase the wages for the population that t we are trying to serve -

09:29:18 From Alfredo Cruz to Everyone:

I'd love to see anchor institutions (Universities , hospitals, etc) invest in community redevelopment to improve neighborhoods and increase access to affordable housing.

09:30:19 From Alexis Jones - Habitat for Humanity to Everyone:

I want to mention the Girls Garage - a non-profit empowering women to woodwork and build. My dream would be able to start something similar

09:30:26 From Pat's iPhone to Everyone:

Great meeting!! Gotta run!

09:30:58 From Alexis Jones - Habitat for Humanity to Everyone:

Gotta have Mrs. Carter speak to the Future's Fund!

09:31:34 From Charlotta Carter to Everyone:

Happy to! I want BR to be the next Silicon Valley Tech

09:31:55 From Alexis Jones - Habitat for Humanity to Everyone:

I would LOVEEEE that!

09:32:02 From Alexis Jones - Habitat for Humanity to Everyone:

Miami is a great vision of that too!

09:32:05 From Trey Godfrey | BRAC to Everyone:

@Alfredo - Great comment about anchor institutions investing in community redevelopment! I'm actually working on this. Can we connect?

09:32:38 From Morgan Udoh (She/Her/They) to Everyone:

And usually exploitative to those overseas communities as well. They go there to pay them pennies

09:33:25 From One Rouge to Everyone:

...for tax purposes

09:34:47 From Trey Godfrey | BRAC to Everyone:

Excellent, @Alfredo. I just emailed you.

09:35:18 From Alfredo Cruz to Everyone:

@TG. Excellent. Thanks!

09:36:42 From Bobby Jones to Everyone:

Unite is great!

09:36:46 From Tristi Charpentier to Everyone:

09:36:50 From One Rouge to Everyone:

Unite Louisiana is a service wehre there is a warm handoff for our people can get the help they need.

09:38:13 From Omar Ledezma to Everyone:

Unite Us is the platform being used by United Ways statewide to implement referral and care coordination! Great for connecting clients to service providers.

09:38:35 From Charlotta Carter to Everyone:

Team - have to drop off - please reach out if I can help in anyway - Great conversation - looking forward to working with all of you . Cheers - have a great weekend - Memorial to Mr. Rinaldi Jacobs - Will Miss Him Greatly :-(

09:38:45 From Charlotta Carter to Everyone:

A True Giant -

09:38:50 From DR. LISA VOSPER to Everyone:

Unite Us -

09:38:54 From Patrick Tuck to Everyone:

Great morning as always! Thanks so much!

09:38:57 From Sherreta Harrison to Everyone:

I'm an Amanda fan!

09:39:14 From Rodneyna Hart to Everyone:

At Capitol Park Museum:

9/4 – Free First Sunday!

9/9 – Forever Dolls with Southern University Dancing Dolls

9/14 – Lunchtime Lagniappe join us at noon!

9/17 – Museum Day/ Discovery Day/ Pirate Day - Costume encouraged!

9/17 – Spanish Town Walking Tour

9/21 – Annual Battle of Baton Rouge Lecture, learn the historic significance of Sep 21 in Louisiana.

Please join us!

09:39:15 From David Beach l Wilson Foundation to Everyone:

Hope everyone has a wonderful day and weekend!

09:40:06 From Rodneyna Hart to Everyone:

We are closing our Katrina Andry and Lititia Huckaby exhibition on the 31.

09:41:38 From One Rouge to Everyone:

you do not!

09:41:55 From Ava Smith to Everyone:

EBRPPRC invite everyone to the CARAVAN FOR JUSTICE, tomorrow 10 am at the Badley Rd underpass next to the Juvenile Detention Ctr. Come out and make some noise in support of the men and women detained in the EBR Parish Jail

09:45:37 From Rodneyna Hart to Everyone:, Capitol Park Museum

09:45:48 From Caitlyn Scales to Everyone:

So sorry! I have to jump off. Thank you all for the time and wisdom!

09:48:17 From Verna Bradley-Jackson to Everyone:

Enjoy the weekend! Be Happy!

09:49:39 From Alexis Jones - Habitat for Humanity to Everyone:

Thank you all!

Community Announcements

Rodneyna Hart: Our exhibition is closing early. Fortunately we are getting ready for the Washington Mardi Graw exhibition that opens October. And the build out for my very ambitious layout is is gonna take longer than we had budgeted for. So we're gonna close the exhibition a little bit earlier, and that's our collaboration with the LSU museum of art where we have two African American contemporary artists. The works are amazing. We've got a print maker and a photographer she prints on on textiles. So if you have an opportunity, please come. I put a lot of other events we have coming up free first Sunday for participating in that with that again, which I am overjoyed that we have a free day where we can of come as a community and take advantage of the museums. And it's not just us, that's free. It's a lot of the museums around here, we've got six museums in walking distance, like that's unheard of for a city. Our. So please take advantage of your, of our cultural offerings.

We are also doing an a program with LSU and Southern during the day. That one is a registration only for students. But it talks about entrepreneurship. And then that night we're doing a forever dolls program. We are featuring the Southern university dancing dolls by talking about their history about their significance and our community and how they add to this rich history and tapestry of who we are and how we build significance. We are also doing a museum day. I highly recommend everyone coming costume because I will be in costume. I will. I'm such a nerd and I love any opportunity. I have to go to a gala dress up for a costume. Like any of these things, like that's my jam. So we're gonna have a pirate day. We're gonna talk about the history. Yes. Ma'am yes, you should. What kind of costumes? So we've got pirates pirate. We can do not hire it. I've got both, I was a pirate last year. I'm making siren this year. But international talk like a pirate bank is September 19th every year. Like it's a high holy day of pasta IANS. I am not won my myself, but I respect their religion and also come in garb and talk like a pirate to the best of my ability. Not a lot.

Also we have a Spanish town walking tour. We're talking about the significance of September 21st. And if you don't know the significance of September 21st, Louisiana, you should come to my museum and check this out. It's a free program, open to the public. And we do it every September 21st, so that people can really start to learn more about not just that. We exist in a historic space, but what is that history? How do we tap into the stories that create who we are and what culture we bring to the world right now?

We also have just accepted new board members. One of my favorite humans is Myra and she is now one of our board members for the museum. I was really hoping that we can bring in young voices, people who have passion and interest and really wanna bring a fresh look at how successful are we being as an institution and serving the needs of our. What do we need to shift? What do we need to do? What are the new considerations that we need to have to make sure that we are not just a entertainment venue or a wedding venue, but that we are integral to our community and create value and make this a place that people wanna stay and invest in because we are giving something important.

We're also opening up a lot of other opportunities, but I will talk forever if you let me, so I'm gonna stop talking here. I'm gonna put my email address in the chat. I'm always open for collaboration. We've got a lot of space it's indoor, outdoor, everything. I, the director of the capital park museum and three other museums throughout the. I'm the museum division director. So all of the New Orleans, all of the museums outside of new Orleans for the state museum system are my, and we are very happy to serve our community and to create relevant things that you actually wanna take part in. And if I'm not doing that, please let me know how I can do that.

Rev. Anderson: Good morning. I'm so sorry. I didn't get to hear most of the program. I was on a a different June for a change on a Friday, but let me say that I love our museum and I love the energy that she brings. Just a couple of things. Many of you probably already know that on Wednesday, unfortunately. Our parish at the Metro council decided to officially make homelessness, a actual crime. And so we lost voting down the homeless ordinance, but I have to say to everybody and several people on this call, I've never been prouder of a coalition that I was of the housing coalition that came together to actively explain to our policy makers, the issues around being unsheltered and homeless. And it was one of the most prideful moments I've ever had in my life. And so I, I do wanna share with everybody that, as the saying goes, that was round one. There are other rounds, but we have to remember that unsheltered and homelessness is an outcome. It's not the cost. And we still have to address the cost. Second thing is Ava Smith put into the chat and I just wanna lift up these Baton Rouge parish prison reform coalition will be having its monthly care ban for justice this Saturday at 10 o'clock. Normally it's the third Saturday of the month. This time it's gonna be there was a schedule change on Tuesday, August. At the state capital will be advocates and people who love children that will be gathering for a press event on no children in Angola and wanna encourage anybody who would like to participate at that event. It'll be at the state capital at 11 o'clock and then last but not least, I would like to encourage anybody who hasn't had a chance.

Some of you know that there is an amendment to, in constitutional slavery on the Louisiana BA ballot for November 8th. And there is a wonderful documentary that was produced based on a book called slave state by a Louisiana gentleman named Curtis Davis. And. That documentary is going all over the state, but I am super excited to announce it is also going to have a special showing at LSU. So we will let you know what the date and the time is. And if any organization would like to get with me and have a screening and a panel, please let me know. Thank you.

Flitcher Bell: I do sit on the gun violence steering committee here in Baton Rouge, along with Reverend Andon Kate, Joshua and Samora. So we are trying to plan an event and I'm just waiting for us to dot the I and cross the Ts. And we'll be getting back with this group as soon as I get that information.

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