ASSEMBLY, No. 2266






      The Assembly Community Services Committee reports favorably Assembly Bill No. 2266.

      This bill creates the Commission on the Socially and Economically Disadvantaged Minority Male Group which shall be a permanent, independent body in, but not of, the Department of Law and Public Safety. The commission shall consist of 19 members as follows: two members of the Senate who are not of the same political party and who are appointed by the Senate President; two members of the General Assembly who are not members of the same political party and who are appointed by the Speaker of the Assembly; a member of the New Jersey Office on Minority Health Advisory Commission appointed by the Governor; and 14 public members appointed by the Governor. The public members shall be chosen from civic and community leaders and representatives of the employment, criminal justice, education and health communities, including a representative of Aspira, Inc., FOCUS, the Black Issues Convention, the Black Men's Health Project Network, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement, the Negro Council of Women, the Puerto Rican Congress, the United Black Interdenominational Clergy, and the Urban League. One public member shall also be a member of the Latino clergy.

      The commission shall be responsible for identifying problems particular to Black and Latino males, particularly in the areas of employment, criminal justice, education and health and for advancing recommendations to address these problems. To effectuate these goals, the commission will oversee and supervise four separate and distinct subcommittees, one devoted to each of the targeted areas. The subcommittee on employment shall focus on access to employment opportunities, access to workforce preparation, "Workforce 2000" marketing, business development, entrepreneurship and training for future labor markets. The subcommittee on the criminal justice system shall focus on juvenile justice, analysis of the criminal justice system, relations between police and the community, victimization at the hands of police, sentencing, violent crime, conflict resolution, domestic violence, homicide, suicide and deaths and injuries caused by guns. The subcommittee on education shall focus on drop-out rates, male attitudes toward schooling, academic achievement, vocational and technical training, higher education and educational alternatives. The subcommittee on health shall focus on healthy lifestyles, violence, all types of substance abuse, sexuality, prevention outreach, role model members and rites of passage programs, data collection and mental health.

      The commission will also conduct research to determine the nature and extent of the problems facing Black and Latino males, identify existing federal, State and local programs that currently address the problems of Black and Latino males, develop and implement new programs and demonstration projects designed to address these problems, develop and implement community education and public awareness programs that assist Black and Latino males, develop strategies to improve the social conditions of Black and Latino males, provide an annual summary of its activities, findings and recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature and issue any other periodic reports deemed necessary.