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Forum tackles local economic problems

January 25, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
About 1,400 people packed the gymnasium at San Fernando High School Saturday for a community forum aimed at helping people deal with the foreclosure crises and rising unemployment rates.The forum was put together by One LA, a grassroots community organization. Organizers teamed up with local lawmakers, church groups and educational leaders to talk to people about coming up with a local stimulus plan to help people in Los Angeles County.

At the meeting, One LA introduced their plan to help keep people from losing their homes. The first part would involve having local leaders remove barriers so banks can reduce the loan values for home owners. The second part requires a local and federal stimulus so that home owners can get second loans on their homes.

"We need a foreclosure prevention plan for Los Angeles," said Yvonne Mariajimenez of One LA. "We believe we have one that can be replicated at a scale for the nation."

One LA leaders said they have also come up with a plan to create living wage jobs. They have created what they call 'an adult career education partnership' with local community colleges and school districts. The plan is to get unemployed adults back to school so they can learn new skills to gain living wage jobs.

People that attended the forum came looking for help, and were in agreement that something needs to be done.

"I feel that we need to focus more on education on adults in our society," said Douglas Hoffman.

"My parents are starting to feel the problem of relapse," said Giovanni Tello. "Their mortgage shoots to one percentage from another. They can't really make the payments, they're struggling."


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