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Evanston aldermen have voted to support two programs designed to help successfully launch young people on careers.

One program, from the Youth Job Center of Evanston would provide 15 “disconnected and unemployed young adults” in Evanston with a two-year career pathway plan leading to employment.

That project is expected to cost a maximum of $80,000 this year. It’s an outgrowth of a pilot program started in 2012.

Joe McRae, the city’s director of parks, recreation and community services, in a memo to aldermen, called results of the pilot program impressive. He said 60 percent of the participants in the pilot program obtained permanent employment.

The aldermen also approved a one-year pilot participation by the city in the Cradle to Career initiative at a cost of $50,000.

The collaboration between local public school districts and a variety of social service agencies claims as its mission seeing that all Evanston young adults are leading productive lives by the age of 23.

The initial Cradle to Career proposal ran into substantial opposition from some aldermen when it was first presented last spring, but after several modifications suggested by the mayor, it was approved without opposition Monday, although one early critic on the plan, Alderman Coleen Burrus, 9th Ward, was absent from Monday’s meeting.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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2 Comments

  1. Back to usual

    What can justify our council to approve the cradle to career experiment. I thought that there was an agreement that CTC was planned to do something that was already being done. What changes were made to CTC to make a 180 degree turnaround by the council.

    I guess it is just other peoples money.

  2. Too many social service programs

    So 60 percent of the "disconnected and unemployed young adults" obtained permanent employment. That's not an impressive stat.

    What kind of "permanent employment" did they receive?

    And what of the other 40 percent? Still unemployed? 

    The City of Evanston, a population of 75,000, spends $1 million each year on social service programs. Taxpayers already provide over $10,000 per student to District 65 and around $16,000 per student to District 202. How much is enough? 

    Ann Rainey made a Freudian slip at the Council meeting. She called the progam Cradle to Grave. 

    Folks, the problem starts at home for these "disconnected youths" who grow up in single parent families, most not knowing their fathers. The No. 1 cause of poverty is single parent households. 

    That's the problem. Unless you tackle the problem everything else will continue for each succeeding generation as it has been for 40 years in Evanston. 

    It's time for change on our City Council.

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