Sister Space

Don’t Depend On An ‘Amber Alert’ To Save Black Girls

By Qiana X | Last updated: Apr 12, 2017 - 9:50:58 AM

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If the response to the girls missing in D.C. hasn’t even prompted the same news coverage that is of the same magnitude of a jersey missing from a professional football player, then I would imagine that the media is not interested in exposing the prevalence of human trafficking as a probable cause as to why these girls are missing. This gives me reason to believe that a nationwide Amber Alert should not be expected anytime soon in seeking to save these victims! In the past few years Houston has had the highest number of human trafficking victims, so there is definitely cause for alarm as we see what is being done to find these girls in our nation’s capital.

Mayor Sylvester Turner has created a task force, the Houston area Council on Human Trafficking because Texas is high on the list of states for the number of calls received by the national human trafficking resource center. Thus, what is happening in another state with the abduction of Black girls does give reason for all Texans to be alarmed, especially when in 2015 there are statistics that indicate most of the victims here were women and more than half were minors.

Queendom Come, Inc. recognizes that there is limitless immeasurable value in the female. Queendom Come, Inc. is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit female empowerment and mentoring organization established to teach, train and nurture girls as they transition to adults and are committed to sound the alarm about our missing girls. The organization founders strongly believe that working with other organizations to bring attention and awareness to this issue is crucial.

Queendom Come founders know that they cannot do it alone so a theme repeatedly reiterated by the directors is that “Queens don’t compete, we collaborate.” Thus, these women continue to find ways to raise awareness to gender specific issues and unite with other organizations to better serve the community.

In February of this year, women and girls of various ages, religions, and social economic backgrounds came together as one sisterhood at the Shrine of the Black Madonna to support Queendom Come, Inc.’s  fundraiser “The Crowning.” The Shrine was the perfect gathering place for this royal affair hosted by the founders of Queendom Come Inc. as it’s a purposeful space of enlightenment and love. As women were walking in the venue throughout the day wearing headpieces, scarves, wraps, turbans, weaves, afros, dreadlocks and braids, to support the organization it was evident that each felt welcomed and a sense of belonging.

The décor was modernly regal as purple African fabric draped the furnishings and weaved around candles lightly burning to illuminate the stage as Queen Wakiti opened up the gathering with prayer. The beaded crystals cascading along the stairs with a gold crown placed in the center of a small glass table attracted the audience into the sacred setting where Queen Oshea gave a succinct introduction of the mission of the nonprofit and spoke on the purpose for the occasion. The purpose of  The Crowning Fundraiser was to provide women of color with a space to embrace their natural beauty and empower others to do the same. The intention of the gathering was to celebrate women of color who’ve made a choice to cover their heads based on consciousness of culture, historical pride, religious significance, or freedom of creativity. All those in attendance were able to listen to a diverse panel that openly discussed topics: such as, “cultural identity,”  “the trend in head wrapping as a fashion in relation to historical significance,”  “religious beliefs and value in women covering their hair,”  as well as “the stigma against natural hairstyles in corporate America” and “the negative reaction of the beauty industry against ethnic styles.” 

The esteemed panelist consisted of the Student Southwest Regional M.G.T. and G.C.C. Captain of the Nation of Islam, Sister Valerie Muhammad, along with Coco Bates, an editor and fashion blogger. Also on center stage were, Joy Ekhator, a natural hair product entrepreneur of Nigerian descent and a wise scholar and matriarch of the community and Dr. Daa’iyah Farooq, who offered insightful remarks on these sensitive gender issues.

The benefit received by the community with this type of event, is that it allowed collaboration with diverse groups of women from various professions and organizations. It was a united front as Queen Sadiyah instructed the women to gather together to close the gaps and connect in their shared space, then she directed them to hug each sister on the left and right. You could observe the mutual adoration that the women held for each other by simply knowing that they had agreed and made a commitment to unite for a common cause.

Queendom Come Inc. is dedicated to working with girls across this city and state, so the recent horrific abduction of Black and Brown girls requires a demand for a plan of action from our community. Based on the nonchalant response of the media and authorities in finding these missing girls, it is evident that there is a need to establish long-lasting partnerships with other women with a shared interest to address specific problems that females are facing.

Therefore, this burgeoning organization, is interested in the expansion of a valuable sister circle that is needed to help sound the alarm about important issues affecting women and girls, since it appears that no one cares to send an “Amber Alert,” when the girl that is missing is young and Black.

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Qiana X Manns, is a Child Welfare Law Specialist, with offices in Houston, Texas. She obtained her Juris Doctorate from Whittier Law School in California. Mrs. Manns is passionate about issues affecting children and minorities. She is the managing attorney of Manns Law Offices PLLC, a corporation offering legal self-help solutions and mediation services. Other legal services provided include divorce, custody, CPS and child support matters. She is involved in volunteering in the community with Queendom Come and organizing CLE courses and legal advice clinics. She is known as a strong advocate in the judicial system. For more information on Queendom Come, visit myqueendomcome.org, or on Facebook at MyQueendomCome or Twitter @Queendome_Come.

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