MIAMI-DADE – A common rallying cry among blacks is a desire for unity; an interest in collaborating to address areas of concern to the black community. The desire to unite, however, has often been overshadowed by a seeming inability to make it happen. Several black local politicians as well as community stakeholders from civil rights and social service organizations have scheduled an event that they hope will chip away at the perceived inability and replace it with a “collective action” plan spurred by a “unified agenda.”

Miami-Dade County Commission Chairman Jean Monestime, County Commissioners Barbara Jordan, Audrey Edmonson and Dennis Moss, and Miami City Commission Chairman Keon Hardemon are co-hosting a free daylong conference in April to bring together black Miamians of all backgrounds and nationalities to discuss issues affecting the African Diaspora.

The “ONE HERITAGE: State of Black Miami” community forum will take place on Thursday, April 7 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Florida Memorial University, Smith Conference Center, 15800 NW 42nd Ave., in Miami Gardens. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m.

The conference will feature four separate panel discussions to assess Black Miami’s state of economic prosperity, community development, quality of life, and youth-next generation. The expert panelists will cover a range of topics including job creation, business opportunities, housing, transportation, education, health, youth violence, and criminal justice reform.

A number of key stakeholder organizations will participate in the forum conference, including the Miami-Dade Branch Chapter of the NAACP, the Urban League, the Miami-Dade Chamber of Commerce, the Black Affairs Advisory Board, Sant La Haitian Neighborhood Center, and the Collective Empowerment Group. The event is sponsored by Florida Memorial University, and New York Life AfricanAmerican Empowerment Plan and Jackson Healthcare System. For more information or to RSVP, call 305- 694-2779, email, or visit