Bethany Johnson-Javois | St. Louis Public Radio

Bethany Johnson-Javois

Several St. Louis area nonprofits are preparing for the 2020 Census by ensuring a proper and accurate population count within the city and St. Louis County. Flikr photo of census form.
(via Flickr/lacylouwho)

Leaders of several St. Louis-area organizations and businesses are taking the first steps to prepare for the upcoming United States census.

The Missouri Foundation for Health held the St. Louis Regional Census Convening on Friday. Area leaders met to discuss the tactics and practices necessary to collect accurate data for the next census in 2020.

Conference-goers encourage each other to push for the implementation of Ferguson Commission recommendations Saturday Oct. 31, 2015 at St. John's Church.
Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

With the Ferguson Commission disbanding at the end of the year, whether or not its recommendations are implemented depend in large part on the support of local and state leaders.

The Ferguson Commission has no authority of its own to implement its recommendations.

The Ferguson Commission's final report paints a stark picture of a region divided by race. It suggests a host of policy changes to law enforcement, education and economic development.
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

The Ferguson Commission’s final report provides an unvarnished look at how a racially divided St. Louis underserves African-Americans. The report provides a host of recommendations to transform how the region polices and educates itself — and its most vulnerable citizens.

Exactly a year after he attended a raucus Ferguson City Council meeting, Cincinnati Pastor Damon Lynch returned to the city to provide insight into his city's reconcilation process.
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

Damon Lynch III spent a portion of his Sept. 9 last year sitting inconspicuously in the Greater Grace Church’s hallway. He was one of hundreds of people who attended the first Ferguson City Council meeting following Michael Brown’s death, a gathering that became a flashpoint for anger and demands for transformation.

A focus group moderator writes down participants' thoughts on racial and ethnic relations in St. Louis, after a meeting of the Ferguson Commission.
Durrie Bouscaren | St. Louis Public Radio

After months of deliberation and debate, the Ferguson Commission produced roughly 200 initial recommendations — an ambitious output for an entity charged with the job of issuing a report.

But Bethany Johnson-Javoism, the Commission's managing director, said the group’s “calls to action” are purposefully aspirational.

Ferguson Commissioners T.R. Carr and Traci Blackmon wait to start a meeting of the commission's municipal governance working group.
Jason Rosenbaum | St. Louis Public Radio

When the Ferguson Commission first met last December, its members bore the brunt of pent-up anger and frustration. It was just days after a grand jury decided against indicting former Ferguson Police officer Darren Wilson for shooting Michael Brown.

At that first gathering, the 16-member commission was beset by livid audience members and skepticism about the commission’s ultimate value. But recently inside a classroom on the University of Missouri-St. Louis campus, the tensions of last year seemed far away.

Former Ferguson Mayor Brian Fletcher holds a big $50,000 check symbolizing a $50,000 donation to Reinvest North County. Fletcher's group -- I Love Ferguson -- raised the money through selling t-shirts, mugs and hats.
Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

It’s been a few months since a group called I Love Ferguson started selling T-shirts, mugs and hats aimed at boosting the beleaguered town.

Since then, former Ferguson Mayor Brian Fletcher said the committee’s wares have been sold worldwide.

“We’ve shipped shirts to the United Kingdom, Italy and France. Our products are in 33 different countries,” said Fletcher, who is part of the I Love Ferguson committee. “They’ve been sent by relatives or they’ve been picked up at the I Love Ferguson store and brought back to those countries.”

This article first appeared in th St. Louis Beacon, Sept. 9, 2012 - The Affordable Care Act remains a contentious political issue in Missouri, but St. Louis is already a leader in demonstrating one positive effect of the reform law, according to speaker at a forum Saturday.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Sept. 12, 2011 - When the St. Louis Regional Health Commission was set up a decade ago, one of its priorities was to find ways to pump life into the area's imploding medical care system for the needy. Fragmented and underfunded, that system had just lost its last public hospital and had no effective way of delivering basic care to tens of thousands of vulnerable residents in St. Louis and St. Louis County.