28 February 2014
President Obama has launched an initiative called "My Brother's Keeper" to help young, minority men in the United States. He said that these young men consistently do worse in society and urged stronger efforts to create more opportunities for them.
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America's first black president has generally avoided policies defined by race, but in an emotional speech Mr Obama said it's an outrage that young Hispanic and African-American men have the odds stacked against them in US society.
He cited what he described as heart-breaking statistics, saying that these young men were more likely to have no father in the house, more likely to end up in jail, and more likely to be victims of violent crime.
The unemployment rate for African-American men was 12% last month, more than double that for white men.
President Obama said that he could identify with this group, and announced a new federal task force to develop ways to keep minority youths in school and out of the criminal justice system.
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- defined by
(here) created because of; concerned with
anger and shock
- have the odds stacked against
be very unlikely to succeed due to difficult surrounding circumstances
mentioned information from a particular source
causing a lot of sadness
- identify with
understand someone's situation and feelings due to experiencing a similar situation
- task force
group of people brought together to carry out a particular mission