Miami, Fla. – Florida state Sen. Shervin Jones has been appointed to the Florida Council on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys, a group created by the Florida Legislature to improve conditions for the Black community throughout the state.

The council, which debuted in 2006, needs more members to examine financial and social challenges impacting Black men and boys and vote on ideas to improve their well-being.

The group is supposed to comprise 19 members but only has 14 to debate and vote during virtual meetings.

They are due to meet a minimum of three meetings per month.

The group is led by Chairman Jerome Hill, who’s currently a program administrator for the Miami Medicaid Fair Hearing United in Doral and a former law enforcement officer.

Former Miami state Rep. James Bush III and T. Willard Fair, president and CEO of the Urban League of Greater Miami, also serve on the committee.

Florida Senate President Kathleen Passidomo appointed Jones, a Democrat representing part of Miami-Dade County, to the group.

“Shev (Shevrin) is a caring and passionate leader who never met a stranger,” Passidomo said in a statement. “He wants the best for each person he meets and will work hard to assist the Council’s mission of engaging, educating, equipping and encouraging all black men and boys to successfully achieve their full potential.”

Jones responded on Twitter, “Thank you Madam President @Kathleen4SWFL for this appointment! I look forward to representing you and my colleagues on the council.”

According to Florida Phoenix, legislative efforts to provide funding for the group’s ideas and initiatives have failed since 2021.

An estimated $150,000 proposed in the group’s budget for last fiscal year was rejected in the state budget, but it shows $350,000 in recurring funds for 2022-23.

The council has concentrated its efforts on developing programs and services based on sound practices that will improve the lives of Black males.

In 2013, the council focused its efforts on researching strategies to help reduce high dropout rates in schools, violent crime rates and reduce incarceration rates among black males.

It is the group’s hope to bring awareness to both citizens and the leaders of Florida about socioeconomic disparities and the disproportionate number of minority children in the state’s child welfare system.

The council also hopes that this awareness will encourage community partnerships throughout the state to help local communities and grassroots organizations model effective programs and best practices that will have a positive impact on the lives of Florida’s Black males.

The council also works with the Agency for HealthCare Administration, Florida Department of Health, Department of Children and Families, Florida Department of Corrections, Florida Department of Education, Florida Department of Employment Opportunity, Department of Juvenile Justice and Department of Management Services.