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America’s Next Leaders: Education Is Key for Chicago Youth

  • “America’s Next Leaders 2016” is an Equal Voice News special series that highlights young people who are strengthening their communities.
November 18, 2016 4:24 pm by

Each year, Equal Voice News features “America’s Next Leaders”, a series that profiles the recipients of the Marguerite Casey Foundation’s Sargent Shriver Youth Warriors Against Poverty Leadership Award. The award honors young people who, in the spirit of Sargent Shriver, have demonstrated a deep commitment to social justice and have transformed that commitment into effective action across an array of issues.The Marguerite Casey Foundation supports and promotes America’s Next Leaders in order to recognize their resolve and courage and to help them build a network that will foster their individual and collective work moving forward.

Equal Voice News is an online newspaper published by the Marguerite Casey Foundation that covers the intersection of policy and poverty, with a focus on the lives of families living at that intersection.

The Equal Voice Network for the Midwest nominated Jose Mancilla, who is featured here, for the award. Here is a summary of his community contributions:

Jose, a senior in high school, has been a youth leader with the Southwest Organizing Project for three years. He has been in the campaign to end zero tolerance policies at Chicago Public Schools, spending years working with state lawmakers on the issue. Eventually, thanks to youth and community organizing, Illinois passed legislation ending the use of zero tolerance policies in publicly funded schools.

The child of Mexican immigrants who became U.S. citizens, Jose has also been active in the fight for comprehensive immigration reform. He walked in a two-day march to end deportations, participated in rallies to expand the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and helped with a DACA workshop in high school. 

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