Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Media Denied at Mock Debate

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    NEWSLETTERS

    City Colleges of Chicago blocked media access to a mock governor's debate among Chicago teenagers. 

    The teens held their debate at the Arturo Velasquez Institute on the City's West side as part of the Chicago Housing Authority's Summer Advantage Learn and Earn program program.
    These teen scholars played the roles of Gov. Pat Quinn, Bruce Rauner, reporters and campaign staffers. Quinn even showed up to the event to listen and to speak to the children, and he said he would have welcomed NBC cameras at the event.  
    Organizers of the event invited NBC 5 cameras to catch these teens in action, debating issues important to them. 
    But our cameras were turned away by City Colleges -- not Quinn, not CHA who invited us -- City Colleges. Closed to the press. 
    Though the Learn and Earn program is not hosted by City Colleges, their facility was used for the mock debate.  

    City Colleges of Chicago issued the following statement Thursday night apologizing for the situation:

    "Staff who turned the Channel 5 crew away from the event at Arturo Velazquez Institute was not authorized to do so and should have verified the wishes of our guest -- CHA's Earn and Learn Program -- before doing so. We apologize for the misunderstanding."