Race Equity

ACLU: Ballot measure limit law unconstitutional, ‘squelches’ speech

BY: - February 14, 2019

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Michigan says a new law restricting the ballot initiative process is unconstitutional and will result in citizens’ speech being “squelched.” Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson has already requested that Attorney General Dana Nessel consider the constitutionality of the law. The ACLU was asked to weigh in and did […]

Black nonprofit to celebrate ‘shared history’ at awards gala

BY: - February 7, 2019

A nonprofit group is slated to hold an event honoring Michigan African-American leaders in honor of Black History Month. Last year, now-Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist was awarded with the the African-American Leadership Institute’s “Great Expectations Award.” This year’s gala is on Friday, Feb. 22 at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in […]

Benson reflects on legacies of Richard Austin and MLK

BY: - January 21, 2019

Prior to being elected secretary of state last year, Jocelyn Benson had a long career dedicated to both civil right and voting rights. A former intern and researcher with the Southern Poverty Law Center, Benson has served on the board of the organization dedicated to tracking extremist groups and “fighting hate and bigotry and to […]

Photo gallery: Scenes from the Women’s March

BY: - January 20, 2019

Women’s March events were held over the weekend for the third straight year in Michigan, including Grand Rapids, Detroit, East Lansing, Saugatuck/Douglas and Holland. Those at the Grand Rapids event had a scare when a car drove into the crowd, FOX-17 TV reported. Advance reporter Ken Coleman was at the snowy Detroit rally on Saturday and […]

Lawrence to help lead women’s caucus

BY: - January 17, 2019

U.S. Rep. Brenda Lawrence (D-Southfield) has been elected co-chair of the bipartisan Congressional Women’s Caucus. She will share duties with U.S. Rep. Debbie Lesko (R-Ariz.). “Working together to support the needs of women and families is a cornerstone of our country’s overall success,” Lawrence said. “I am committed to continue to collaborate in creating legislation […]

Neeley re-elected as Black Caucus leader

BY: - January 16, 2019

State Rep. Sheldon Neeley (D-Flint) has been re-elected to chair the Michigan Legislative Black Caucus (MLBC) for the 2019-20 session. Neeley was first elected chair in January 2017, following a stint as the caucus’ first vice chair during the 2015-2016 legislative session. “We’re moving forward in a positive and unified way, tackling the challenges of […]

Bliss seeks to expand racial equity as she nears re-election campaign

BY: - January 12, 2019

As the mayor of Michigan’s second-largest city prepares to run for a second term in office, she’s focused on continuing to make Grand Rapids a business-friendly city for enterprises of all sizes.   Mayor Rosalynn Bliss, a long time city commissioner who was elected as Grand Rapids’ first female mayor in 2016, has prioritized trying […]

MI Dept. of Civil Rights will take discrimination complaints during federal shutdown

BY: - January 10, 2019

The Michigan Department of Civil Rights (MCDR) on Thursday put out a notice that it is still handling discrimination complaints, even as federal agencies are shut down. On Tuesday, U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Detroit) held an event with people impacted by the partial government shutdown. Attorney Jack Schulz said he has a client whose discrimination […]

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer

Whitmer signs equal pay measure

BY: - January 8, 2019

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed an executive directive Tuesday that would stop state departments and agencies from asking about or investigating an applicants prior salary — a move the Democratic governor says will narrow the pay gap between men and women. “It’s pretty simple, women deserve equal pay for equal work,” Whitmer said in a statement. […]

Tlaib, workers talk impact of federal government shutdown

BY: - January 8, 2019

As long as the current partial federal government shutdown continues, Hodari Brown says his home mortgage is in jeopardy. “I haven’t been paid since December,” the Redford and federal government employee said Tuesday morning. “I also help to assist my parents.” Brown, a military veteran, joined U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Detroit) as the first-term Capitol […]

Peters staffer becomes 3rd Black legislative director in U.S. Senate*

BY: - January 7, 2019

Updated, 4:30 p.m. U.S. Sen. Gary Peters (D-Bloomfield Twp.) has promoted Zephranie Buetow to a top policy position in his Capitol Hill office. Buetow has served as deputy legislative director and counsel for Peters. Prior to joining his staff in 2015, she worked for former U.S. Sen Mary Landrieu (D-La.). She becomes one of only […]

Barrier breaker: When Wharton was named MSU president

BY: - January 2, 2019

Clifford Wharton Jr. officially assumed the presidency of Michigan State University on this day in 1970. He was the first African-American to lead a major American university. The Boston, Mass., native, who entered Harvard University at age 16, also became the first Black man to earn a master’s degree in international affairs from the Paul […]