Civil Rights

Study: Pandemic led to absenteeism, challenges in Michigan’s lowest-performing schools

BY: - September 30, 2021

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, only about 12% of educators in some of Michigan’s lowest-performing schools believed that their students were on track academically last school year, according to a new study.  Michigan State University’s Education Policy Innovation Collaborative (EPIC) found that student absenteeism was pervasive and learning was greatly affected in Partnership school districts […]

Senate Dems slam GOP election bills for enshrining ‘lies into law’

BY: - September 30, 2021

Four GOP bills passed by the Michigan Senate again sparked 2020 election-related debate across party lines Thursday, as Democrats argued the legislation would enshrine “lies into law” by targeting non-issues within Michigan’s election system. “I think these types of bills are a sign of a do-nothing Legislature that pats itself on the back for doing […]

Whitmer signs remaining FY 2022 budget bills, vetoes ‘anti-choice’ line items

BY: - September 29, 2021

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed into law Wednesday the nearly $70 billion Fiscal Year 2022 budget, while axing Republicans’ cuts to abortion access and noting that budget language restricting COVID-19 mandates is unenforceable.  Whitmer vetoed what she termed seven “anti-choice” line items from the budget, totaling $16 million.  “These line items would create a gag rule […]

Mobile vaccine clinics aim to bridge the gap for Latinos, immigrants in Kent Co.

BY: - September 29, 2021

Before COVID-19 hit Michigan, registered nurse Melissa Bisel oversaw the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women Infants and Children (WIC), as well as immunization programs at the Kent County Health Department (KCHD).  Now, as a public health program supervisor in KCHD’s health clinics division, Bisel oversees mobile vaccination clinics to combat the spread of COVID-19. […]

House Education panel passes bill essentially banning ‘critical race theory’

BY: - September 28, 2021

Republicans on the House Education Committee advanced on Tuesday a bill that would prohibit schools from including “any form of race or gender stereotyping” in their curriculums.  House Bill 5097, introduced by state Rep. Andrew Beeler (R-Ft. Gratiot), follows a nationwide right-wing trend to ban “critical race theory” but does not mention CRT explicitly.  Beeler […]

Michigan GOP initiative to restrict voting access gets approval to gather signatures

BY: - September 27, 2021

A controversial, Republican-backed petition drive to restrict voting access in Michigan gained approval Monday, clearing the way for advocates to begin collecting signatures. The Michigan Board of State Canvassers approved the Secure MI Vote petition with a 3-0 vote. Canvasser Julie Matuzak, a Democrat, was absent from the meeting. The petition is intended to enable […]

Former Michigan GOP, Dem party chairs debut national popular vote ballot measure

BY: - September 27, 2021

The former heads of both major Michigan political parties are joining forces to help Michigan become the next state to ratify a National Popular Vote (NPV) amendment. Former Michigan Republican Party Chair Saul Anuzis and former Michigan Democratic Party Chair Mark Brewer say it would make elections more fair and democratic by doing away with […]

Biden admin. rolls out new rule to bolster DACA as lawsuit continues

BY: - September 27, 2021

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration on Monday unveiled a proposed new rule that would strengthen the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program to protect undocumented people in the program from legal challenges. The proposed rule, announced by the Department of Homeland Security, would “preserve and fortify” the DACA program, an Obama administration-era initiative that protects from deportation […]

Dingell blasts Greene for crashing press conference, says ‘try being a Christian’

BY: - September 27, 2021

U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Dearborn) lambasted fellow Rep. Marjorie Taylor Green (R-Ga.) on Friday after Greene harassed Democrats as they assembled on the Capitol steps for a news conference on the 218-211 passage of their bill codifying the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade ruling legalizing abortion. Democrats approved the bill after the Supreme Court allowed […]

Dozens of Michigan Dems sign brief to protect Roe v. Wade

BY: - September 24, 2021

Forty-five Michigan Democratic lawmakers signed onto an amicus brief demanding that the U.S. Supreme Court uphold Roe v. Wade. “Abortion is health care. We will not sit quietly while a certain small faction attempts to dismantle a person’s right to their own reproductive freedom,” Sens. Jim Ananich (D-Flint) and Stephanie Chang (D-Detroit) said in a […]

Black business leaders applaud Detroit chamber’s focus on equity but say more needs to be done

BY: - September 24, 2021

Black business leaders in Detroit on Thursday applauded the Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce for offering several Mackinac Policy Conference sessions centered on racial diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) but urged the business and financial lending communities to do more to support African American businesses.  “I’m new to the chamber, and I’m about inclusion,” said […]

LGBTQ+ advocates worry about fate of same-sex marriage as SCOTUS weighs overturning Roe v. Wade

BY: - September 24, 2021

As the U.S. Supreme Court plans to hear in December a challenge to Mississippi’s abortion ban that could overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision — some LGBTQ+ advocates are concerned that threats to same-sex marriage are on the horizon. The Supreme Court only ruled six years ago to legalize same-sex marriage in Obergefell […]