Group Rallies For Chicago 2016 Commitments

More than two-dozen supporters from a group called Communities for an Equitable Olympics 2016 rallied at Chicago City Hall Tuesday asking for binding commitments on housing and contracts related to Chicago’s bid for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

The group wants to make sure the commitments are in place when the International Olympic Committee (IOC) members arrive in the city in April. It wants City Hall to assure income and minority residents in the South Side that should Chicago host the 2016 Olympics, the Games will not displace them.

Among other requests the ordinance reportedly wants to ensure that 30 per cent of the Olympic Village housing for athletes will be converted into affordable housing so that residents are not forced out of their neighbourhoods by rising costs once the Games are over. Also that 50 per cent of construction and operation contracts be awarded to minority and female-owned businesses.

When asked by a reporter whether residents would protest at the Olympics should the ordinance not pass, a city alderman said she thought it would be inevitable.