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A petition campaign will launch this year add LGBTQ protections to the state’s civil rights law.

Fair and Equal Michigan needs to gather a little more than 340 thousand signatures from registered voters. Once those names are certified, the question goes to state lawmakers to approve, reject or ignore. If the initiative is not adopted by the Legislature, it goes on the November ballot, says Trevor Thomas of the Fair and Equal Michigan campaign.

“We believe it is finally time to either have them pass the bill, or hand it off to the people.”

Gamal Gasim portrait
Bernadine Carey Tucker / Grand Valley State University

The tension between the United States and Iran has geopolitical experts considering the probability of an escalating conflict between the two nations.

Gamal Gasim is associate professor of global studies and political science at Grand Valley State University. He explains that while neither is interested in war, Iran’s mission is Middle East dominance at a time when President Donald Trump is withdrawing U.S. troops from the region.

Homeless photo
flickr

In an effort to serve more people facing homelessness and extreme poverty, Grand Rapids based non-profits Mel Trotter Ministries and Heartside Ministries are merging. While the two homeless advocacy groups have had a partnership since 2017, representatives from both non-profits announced on Tuesday that the two are officially joining forces.

Image of the Kalamazoo River in Saugatuck.
Terry Johnston via Wikimedia | CC BY 2.0 / flickr.com via Wikimedia.org

 

   Federal officials are giving the public more time to comment on a proposed settlement with one of the companies responsible for polluting the Kalamazoo River in Michigan.

The Environmental Protection Agency and the Justice Department announced the deal last month. It calls for NCR Corp. to pay $245 million to continue a cleanup that began more than 20 years ago.

Unsplash

  An official with Michigan State University Federal Credit Union says 2,300 cards were charged with false transactions to an international televangelist network.

Officials with the Lansing-area credit union say it's unclear who was behind the fraudulent charges to LoveWorld TV.

Each charge was under $100 and will be refunded.

The credit union says it is also issuing new cards to members who were affected.

Chief Marketing Officer Deidre Davis says the credit union's security and fraud management teams are investigating, as are officials from Visa.

Michigan to host forums on state behavioral health system

Jan 7, 2020
Photo of a person receiving an injection from a doctor
Unsplash

The state of Michigan is holding public forums on ways to strengthen its Medicaid-funded behavioral health and developmental disabilities system.

Forums start Wednesday in Detroit, according to the Department of Health and Human Services.

Others are scheduled Thursday in Grand Rapids, Jan. 22 in Marquette and Jan. 30 in Saginaw. An online forum is planned for Feb. 6.

Mother pleads no contest to helping son despose of body parts

Jan 7, 2020
Scales of Justice photo
Tim Evanson via Wikimedia | CC BY 3.0 / wikimedia.org

A mother accused of helping her son move the dismembered remains of a woman pleaded no contest Monday before a trial in Grand Rapids. The mother is Barbara Chance, whose son, Jared Chance, made national headlines after he was convicted in September of killing and dismembering 31-year-old Ashley Young.

Young was last seen alive at a Grand Rapids bar with Chance the night of Nov. 29, 2018. According to police, two days later, Chance’s neighbor found her torso in the basement of Chance’s Grand Rapids rental home. Her head and other body parts have never been found.

migop.gov

Michigan’s two US senators have effectively blocked President Donald Trump’s pick for US attorney for western Michigan.

       Tom Leonard is a Republican who lost a bid in 2018 to be elected Michigan attorney general. President Trump then nominated Leonard to be the US attorney for a district that covers the western half of the state and the Upper Peninsula. That nomination was effectively blocked by US Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters – both Democrats – by using a congressional privilege.

Photo of student learning English
Kent County District Library

Today more than ever before immigrants are shifting Kent County demographics and the Kent County District Library wants to stay ahead of the curve.  Sara Proaño who works as the community engagement manager at KDL says one way they are doing this is by hosting a class to introduce non-English speakers to a job at the library. 

An official with Michigan State University Federal Credit Union says 2,300 cards were charged with false transactions to an international televangelist network. Officials with the Lansing-area credit union say it's unclear who was behind the fraudulent charges to LoveWorld TV.

Each charge was under $100 and will be refunded. The credit union says it is also issuing new cards to members who were affected. Chief Marketing Officer Deidre Davis says the credit union's security and fraud management teams are investigating, as are officials from Visa.

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