Eli Savit masked while holding vaccination card

A Full COVID-19 Recovery Requires Investment in People by PEG Guest Contributor Eli Savit

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, government entities, community leaders, and schools in Washtenaw County worked together to slow the spread of the virus and distribute the vaccine. More than 60% of Washtenaw County residents over 16 years of age have now received at least one dose of the vaccine. This public health achievement is in no small part due to the efforts of these groups to expand access and locate pop-up clinics in schools, churches, and community centers. Cross-sector collaboration allowed the county to overcome traditional barriers in serving the hardest-to-reach communities.

June is pride month

Pride Month and actions you can take beyond shopping the rainbow

June is Pride Month. In part due to this national declaration, awareness and information on acceptance and equality has increased. However, Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in America continue to face discrimination in their daily lives. Check this June blog regularly to see what all of us can do to support this community beyond buying pretty rainbow decor.

CENSUS – the ongoing saga of delayed results and the impact on the 2022 election

date changes have created angst for the political parties and its’ constituencies and placed states in difficult positions to legally and accurately complete their responsibilities.  Some states have constitutional deadlines for redistricting and/or statutory filing deadlines for primaries.

Michigan’s redistricting commission will hold an open meeting at 1 PM on March 5th to discuss the conflict between when Census data will be available and constitutional deadlines. Complicating matters, voting rights advocates have said, is that this will be the first redistricting cycle since the Supreme Court eliminated the preclearance requirement of the Voting Rights Act that required states with a history of racial discrimination to prove to the Department of Justice that their electoral maps weren’t drawn to dilute the power of voters of color. The shortened redistricting window leaves less time to challenge maps in the courts as discriminatory.

Lunar-New-Year

Rise in Hate Crimes on Asian Americans

Shortly after his Inauguration, President Joe Biden signed a memorandum denouncing xenophobia and violence against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, but the recent violence has caused communities to hunker down again during the normally celebratory time of Lunar New Year.

The increase in hate incidents is a particular concern in urban areas, especially in New York and California. However, activists are angered not only by the violence but by the lack of media attention the cases received. It is deemed unclear to police whether the spate of crimes are racially motivated, however, the similarity and volume of the attacks speak to an increased bias rather than a series of individual events.

The Unseen Heritage of Black Women Working for the Vote

Although the subject of Black female activists fighting for voting rights has been rehashed in the media in the 2020 Presidential Election and the US Senate runoffs in Georgia. It was clear that Black female voting rights activists were pivotal in affecting the change to a new administration. In January, coinciding with the runoffs, Time reprinted a November article illuminating the chronicle of Black women activists that started out fighting for the women’s vote, a story that begins long before the recent historic efforts in Georgia. It is this overlooked history of dedication to progressing forward that today’s Black female organizers fighting for the vote recognize, build upon, and respect. It was evident in November and January, that the under-recognized work by Black women activists, past and present, opens doors and impacts people of all races and genders and will be the key in the continued fight for voting equality.