Allison R. Donahue

Allison R. Donahue

Allison R. Donahue covers education, women's issues and LGBTQ issues. Previously, she was a suburbs reporter at the St. Cloud Times in St. Cloud, Minn., covering local education and government. As a graduate of Grand Valley State University, she has previous experience as a freelance researcher for USA Today and an intern with WOOD TV-8. When she is away from her desk, she spends her time going to concerts, comedy shows or getting lost on hikes in different places around the world.

Redistricting commission goes into another closed session to discuss Detroit lawsuit

By: - January 14, 2022

The Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission went into another closed session Thursday to discuss a lawsuit filed by the Detroit Caucus regarding the MICRC’s interpretation of the Voting Rights Act (VRA). The commission decided Thursday, with a 9-2 vote, to go behind closed doors to discuss the lawsuit, which alleges that the commission’s maps, which […]

How omicron is making another COVID school year even worse

By: - January 14, 2022

Kathleen Lucas, a mother from Zeeland, was nervous about sending her daughters back to school after the holidays, especially since Ottawa County rescinded its school mask mandate earlier this month, even with COVID-19 cases fueled by the highly transmissible omicron variant surging.  Lucas’ 7-year-old daughter, Emerson, tested positive for COVID-19 Thursday morning after being exposed […]

State education board passes measure countering GOP’s ‘critical race theory’ bills 

By: - January 12, 2022

The Michigan State Board of Education passed a resolution Tuesday to counter the anti-critical race theory (CRT) bills introduced in the Legislature last year, but it didn’t happen without lengthy debate among board members and hours of public comment.   Tuesday’s meeting stretched nearly 10 hours due to hundreds of public comments.  There was an organized […]

Details surface of former Speaker Chatfield’s alleged sexual abuse of sister-in-law

By: and - January 10, 2022

The person former House Speaker Lee Chatfield (R-Levering) is accused of sexually assaulting for more than a decade, beginning when she was a child, is his sister-in-law. The Michigan State Police is investigating the complaint, which was first filed with the Lansing Police Department on Dec. 24, 2021. Rebekah Chatfield, now 26, said the assaults […]

Breaking: Group to file 2022 proposal protecting abortion access in Michigan Constitution

By: - January 7, 2022

A coalition of abortion rights groups are hoping to enshrine the right to reproductive freedom in Michigan by amending the state Constitution. The ballot committee, Reproductive Freedom for All, a coalition of Planned Parenthood of Michigan, the ACLU of Michigan, Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan and Michigan Voices, filed paperwork Friday morning with the Board […]

Michigan reports 27,346 new COVID-19 cases since Monday

By: - January 5, 2022

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reported Wednesday that a total of 1,595,919 Michiganders have tested positive for COVID-19 and 27,563 have died from the virus — an additional 27,346 cases and 277 deaths since Monday. The new numbers combine Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s recorded cases and deaths, with an average of 13,673 […]

Whitmer again tests negative for COVID-19 after her husband tests positive

By: - January 5, 2022

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer tested negative in a PCR test for COVID-19 Wednesday after her husband, Marc Mallory, tested positive on Tuesday.  “Like many Michiganders in the past few weeks, my husband Mark has tested positive for COVID-19 yesterday after feeling a little under the weather. I just received my test results from a PCR and […]

As omicron spreads in Michigan, overwhelmed doctors urge vaccinations, boosters

By: - January 4, 2022

As the omicron variant spreads rapidly through the state, hospitals continue to be overburdened with COVID-19 patients and staffing shortages, doctors from Henry Ford Health System in Southeast Michigan say.  “The continuous spread of covid within our community not only puts a strain on our health systems because of the bed occupancy, but also the […]

Here’s how new districts could shape Michigan’s 2022 election

By: - January 4, 2022

Now that the Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission (MICRC) approved final state and congressional maps, the contours of the 2022 election are becoming clearer for candidates.  The 13-member commission, which consists of four Republicans, four Democrats and five independents, approved the “Chestnut map” with eight commissioners voting in favor of this map.  The final congressional […]

Dem lawmakers announce lawsuit against redistricting panel for ‘watering down Black votes’

By: - January 3, 2022

The state’s independent redistricting commission approved the final congressional and state maps last week, but some voting rights activists — including a group of Democratic lawmakers who are filing a lawsuit — say the new maps unconstitutionally disenfranchise Black voters. The Michigan Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission (MICRC), a 13-member commission consisting of four Republicans, four […]

From the schoolhouse to the state House: Burned-out teacher finds new way to advocate for students

By: - January 3, 2022

When Kyle Zawacki first started teaching nine years ago, he thought he would retire as a teacher. Then came a pandemic and politicized fights about critical race theory (CRT) between school districts, parents and teachers, which became too much for Zawacki to bear.  Zawacki, who was a social studies and Native American studies teacher at […]

More abortion restrictions were introduced in 2021 than ever. Here’s a look back at the debate.

By: - December 29, 2021

Conversations around access to abortion took centerstage this year after the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear a challenge to  a Mississippi law banning abortions after 15 weeks that could result in the court overturning the landmark Roe v. Wade decision. If justices uphold the Mississippi ban in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the […]