Be the Match seeks donors
African American need is critical
Patients seeking bone marrow donations to fight diseases such as leukemia and lymphoma will typically find a match within their family only 25 percent of the time; the other 75 percent of matches are made with compatible strangers.
That’s where Be the Match comes in. This national registry of 9 million donors is one way those seeking marrow can find it.
But according to Be the Match spokesperson Donna Collins, the number of ethnic minorities in the registry is low. In fact, the likelihood an African American person has of finding a match who is willing and able to donate is 66 percent compared to 72 percent for Hispanics, 73 percent for Asians, 82 percent for American Indians and Alaskan Natives and 93 percent for Whites.
“Of the 9 million people in the national registry for Be the Match only 7 percent are African Americans, and there is a great need in the African Americans. But (the need) is not just for African Americans but minority communities,” noted Collins adding that 10 percent of those in the registry are Hispanic; 7 percent are Asians and Native Americans represent 1 percent.
“Mixed race people have more complicate genes, noted Collins and represent about 3 percent of those in the registry,” explained Collins.
According to the website blackbonemarrow.com, the more complex gene mixture African Americans possess makes finding a match more challenging.
Be the Match is also looking for donors and hold events year round to solicit interested people. Indivi-duals can also go to the organization website at bethematch.org, put in a zip code and find the next event.
Online registration is also available, and Collins says a kit will be mailed out.
The first step for potential donors between ages 18 and 60 is to visit the site and register. That is done by supplying a family history and returning a swab sample from inside your cheek. Then, if you are found to be a match, you must willing to donate marrow or peripheral blood stem cells.
Donating the latter is done through a non-surgical, outpatient procedure similar to donating platelets or plasma. Donating marrow is a surgical process that takes place at a hospital and required general or regional anesthesia.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—Reported hate crimes in Los Angeles County increased by 15 percent in 2011 from the previous year, but the total is the second lowest in 22 years, according to the county Commission on Human Relations’ annual report released today.
The commission defines a hate crime as one where hatred or prejudice toward a victim’s race or ethnicity, religion, disability, gender or sexual orientation was a substantial factor in the crime.
LOS ANGELES, Calif.—Reported hate crimes in Los Angeles County fell by 28 percent in 2010 to the lowest level in 21 years, according to the county Commission on Human Relations’ annual report released.
The commission defines a hate crime as one where hatred or prejudice toward a victim’s race or ethnicity, religion, disability, gender, or sexual orientation was a substantial factor in the crime.
According to the 2010 Hate Crime Report, there were 427 reported hate crimes countywide last year, a decline of 166 from the previous year.
The official unemployment rate is 15.8 percent among Blacks and 13 percent among Latinos; Blacks earn only 57 cents for each dollar of White family income, Latinos earn 59 cents; and Blacks have only 10 cents of net wealth while Latinos have 12 cents to every dollar of net wealth that Whites have.
According to a new report by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC), in 2011 more than 37 million American households were either unbanked or under-banked. African American households represent 34 percent of all under-banked consumers, the highest percentage among demographics surveyed. When under-banked African American and Latino households are combined, these two communities of color comprise more than 60 percent of the nation’s under-banked households.
In a petition filed Monday with the California Public Utilities Commission, The Greenlining Institute asked the CPUC to hold a proceeding before the end of 2012 to consider policies regarding background checks for workers in CPUC-funded energy efficiency programs. Greenlining expressed concern that without CPUC guidance, utility companies could unilaterally implement policies that exclude qualified, responsible workers and discriminate against Latino and African American job-seekers.