In the Wake of Unrest, Baltimore Has a New Initiative

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The leadership of the city of Baltimore has at times been better at coming up with new slogans, surveys, and initiatives than at actually making sure all its residents are taken care of.

And so it should come as no surprise that a week after the protests and unrest that rocked the city in the wake of Freddie Gray’s death, Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has announced… a new initiative! It’s called One Baltimore (or One Balt1more, or #OneBaltimore on your phone). The language of the campaign seems like a deliberate attempt to counter the “there are two Baltimores” language that has popped up in the wake of the unrest. But it’s hard to be sure; as of now, there’s not a whole lot beyond a slogan and a website.

But at a press conference announcing the One Baltimore campaign, the mayor and city officials seemed intent on moving beyond rhetoric and finding some actual solutions. They mentioned mentorship programs, repairing damaged businesses, and affordable housing issues. As of yet, the campaign has no concrete plans for action. But Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake is doing her best to use the city’s crisis moment as an opportunity to make real, lasting change: “This is an opportunity for us to focus more intensely on systemic problems that have faced our city for decades, if not generations,” she said in a statement.



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