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Two Michigan cities tapped for national economic mobility initiative

steve carmody
Michigan Radio

Detroit and Lansing are among ten U.S. cities picked to be part of an effort to improve economic mobility.

Foundations linked to billionaires Michael Bloomberg, Bill Gates, and Steve Ballmer are behind the effort to improve the future of America’s children.

“We have to be very thoughtful about where our investments go to make sure that kids have access to the things that are going to help them be competitive and successful in the economic realities of today,” says Andi Crawford, the director of the city of Lansing’s Neighborhood Organization office.  

In Detroit, the initiative will assist the city in people living in affordable housing units to economic opportunities.

“In Detroit, it’s one of our top priorities to develop and preserve affordable housing across the city,” says Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. “Now were going to take a closer look at best ways to connect residents in these units to the services Detroit has to offer, such as job training through Detroit at Work.”

Detroit will have access to a $150,000 grant made to the project partner What Works Cities. 

In Lansing, the program will identify, pilot, and measure the success of interventions to promote upward economic mobility.

“Lansing has developed its Office of Financial Empowerment (OFE) to provide opportunities for economic mobility for our residents,” says Lansing Mayor Andy Schor. “This national initiative allows us to test and eventually scale solutions to continue to increase financial opportunities for Lansing residents.”

The ten cities participating in the economic mobility initiative are: Albuquerque, NM; Cincinnati, OH; Dayton, OH; Detroit, MI; Lansing, MI; New Orleans, LA; Newark, NJ; Racine, WI; Rochester, NY; and Tulsa, OK.

Steve Carmody has been a reporter for Michigan Public since 2005. Steve previously worked at public radio and television stations in Florida, Oklahoma and Kentucky, and also has extensive experience in commercial broadcasting.
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