Identifying the Origins to the Labeling of Community Center/ Agencies as Being “Ghetto” through Co-operative Inquiry Research Gathering

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The purpose of this paper is to identify the origins to the classification of community centers in Syracuse New York as being “ghetto” and its connections to unethical behaviors and actions within these agencies. The community centers of Syracuse New York and centers located in other urban neighborhoods that are economically deprived are experiencing a labeling trend. Many of these agencies are labeled by their community and even employees as being “ghetto” and are associated with the stereotypes of this label. The labeling of this title on these agencies is causing both internal and external conflicts for community centers. The labeling of community centers as being “ghetto” creates stereotypes to develop that are often associated with unethical behaviors and actions, which influences the quality of services provided by the agency. The labeling problem has even attributed to funding, partnerships and sponsorship problems by larger groups not wanting to associate themselves with problems and behaviors that are developed and experienced in a “ghetto” agency. The research will examine possible internal and external influences through co-operative research gathering by interviewing different groups within these agencies. The results from the study will be used to help community agencies identify the origin to this labeling problem. The agency can then use the information to develop solutions such as policy changes and action steps to mitigate or eliminate current problems or procedures that will prevent the classification to occur.


Keywords: Labeling, Stereotypes, Urban Community (inner city), Under Representative Population, Human Service Agencies, Diversity, Ghetto, Co-operative Inquiry
Stream: Race and Racism
Presentation Type: 30 minute Paper Presentation in English
Paper: “Being Ghetto”: Identifying the Labeling Origins of Urban Community Centers, ,


Dr. Emad Rahim

Faculty/ Instructor, School of Business, Colorado Technical University
Syracuse, NY, USA

Instructor of business and project management courses for Colorado Technical University. An experience lecturer, teaching graduate and undergraduate courses using multi-media presentational tools. A Consultant for Innovative Development Incorporated providing services for small businesses and nonprofit organizations, specializing in the areas of project management, technology, programming, leadership, marketing and service development.

The previous President of the Human Service Association of Central New York, with over 10 years of nonprofit and public service management experience. Currently pursing a Doctorate of Management (D.M) in Organizational Development at Colorado Technical University, Colorado Springs, CO. Dissertation focusing in nonprofit organizational transformation; applying corporate methodology to improve nonprofit and public service programming and delivery of services.

Ref: D08P0263