Mayor Lori Lightfoot announces 'Together We Rise' recovery initiative to help communities impacted by COVID-19

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Mayor Lori Lightfoot, the Chicago Community Trust and Chicago leaders from the business and non-profit communities announced the Together We Rise initiative, aimed to help communities disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The initiative will be led by a steering committee that will distribute more than $25 million in philanthropic contributions.

It will also work to create business practices and policies to foster economic equality, including procurement and hiring commitments and workforce and income support, such as an earned income tax credit and policies to invest in disinvested communities.

"COVID-19 has taken a devastating toll on our Black and brown communities, undoubtedly due to the disproportionate levels of poverty and inequity they have faced for decades," said Mayor Lori Lightfoot. "As a result, our response to COVID-19 must also address these deep-rooted issues. Thanks to the Together We Rise initiative, we will be able to do just that. I am proud to partner with The Chicago Community Trust and every philanthropy, business, nonprofit, and community that has signed onto this effort and look forward to working together to rise above COVID-19 and the systemic inequalities it has brought to the surface."

"There is no greater time than now for us to reimagine our future as we rebuild stronger by focusing on inclusive, resilient growth that places Black and Latinx communities, historically left behind, at the center of our recovery," said Helene Gayle, president and CEO of The Chicago Community Trust. "As the region's community foundation, we stand committed to working alongside diverse stakeholders to reimagine systems that perpetuate racial and ethnic wealth inequity.

The Together We Rise steering committee will be comprised of:
-Keating Crown, Sterling Bay
-Ghian Foreman, Emerald South Economic Development Collaborative
-Luis Gutierrez, Latinos Progresando

-Evan Hochberg, Crown Family Philanthropies
-Vickie Lakes-Battle, IFF
-Bruce McNamer, Builders Initiative
-Cindy Moelis, Pritzker Traubert Foundation
-John Palfrey, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
-Jim Reynolds, Loop Capital
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