Social Justice | WGLT

Social Justice

Flickr

Riccardo Rosselló, the Governor of Puerto Rico, resigned this week after 12 days of protests and demonstrations. Puerto Ricans had already displayed dissatisfaction over the lack of government performance during Hurricanes Maria and Irma, but the tipping point was Rosselló’s chat room transcripts, which were recently published. The transcripts included hateful comments towards women, the working class, the LGBTQ+ community, and other marginalized groups in Puerto Rico that were made by Rosselló and members of his small governing clique.

Jim Pruyne
Kibler-Brady-Ruestman Memorial Home

A longtime social justice advocate in Bloomington-Normal is being remembered for his commitment to helping others.

Kavya and Olivia
Mary Cullen / WGLT

Bloomington-Normal students and Not In Our Town leaders will gather next week to honor school employees who work to “Stop Hate Together” and create inclusive environments for the Twin City youth.

Zakkiyyah Najeebah

Every year, Illinois Wesleyan University holds a Teach-In on Martin Luther King Jr. Day to honor the civil rights leader.

Ashley Shannon with Jalon Jones at ISU's 2016 homecoming
courtesy of Illinois State University

Ashley Shannon said she didn't choose to attend Illinois State University. The school chose her.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

A Blue Lives Matter rally outside Bloomington City Hall on Monday evening drew about 15 people.

Hope Center For Fair Housing

A fair housing group is calling the city of Peoria's nuisance ordinance racially discriminatory. The Wheaton-based Hope Center has filed a federal lawsuit against the city.

Tari Renner gestures
Staff / WGLT

The final draft of a police citizen review board may leave advocates on both sides of the issue feeling like they have lost something.

Chief Heffner talks to aldermen
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

A citizen review board for police will not be a slam dunk in Bloomington, if early council discussion is a guide.

Several Aldermen said they wanted to learn more about the options during a work session on the issue. A couple want to move ahead and have staff draft an ordinance. Alderman David Sage said he sees no case for the panel.

Cristian Jaramillo / WGLT

A Facebook group called "Bloomington Deserves Better Than Kevin Lower" is attacking the mayoral candidate for a 3-year-old response to an alleged racist post on a page titled the Marcus Garvey Society.

On the page was a comment suggesting that "if African Americans really wanted to escape racism, it might be time for them to move to the land of the ancestors."

Sharvelle Bullock / WZND

Life-long Democrat Jerry Springer says, for the first time in his 73-years, the very idea of what America stands for is being challenged.

Staff / WGLT

Illinois State University is fielding a lot of questions from international students concerned about the Trump Administration executive orders on immigration and visa enforcement.

About ten ISU students come from the seven countries specifically banned in the Executive order. Others from those nations have also been accepted for admission to ISU in the fall.

Staff / WGLT

The Not In Our Town movement in Bloomington Normal is objecting to the Muslim ban and borders the Trump administration has closed for people from seven nations.

Mike Matejka of Not in Our Town said there will be a solidarity rally Wednesday.

Mike Miletich / WGLT

A large group of Bloomington residents are upset with the City Council's decision to unanimously approve a lease from Mid-Central Community Action for the property at 828 W. Jefferson Street to serve as a community house.

Cristian Jaramillo / WGLT

Bloomington Alderman Scott Black says he is ready to vote on the West Jefferson Street Community House next week.

The property was originally proposed as a police substation. The WGLT interview with Black is part of series of interviews on the west side house and its proposed use. 

Facebook

Monthly vigils for social justice are returning to the twin cities.

After a several year break, organizer Linda Unterman is bringing back gatherings the second Tuesday of the month, outside the Bloomington Center for Performing Arts. Unterman helped organize similar events in the aftermath of the Iraq war, in conjunction with moveon.org

Group of 25 sits in a circle on the south side of downtown Bloomington courthouse.
Colleen Reynolds / WGLT

Tears flowed around a Black Lives Matter talking circle in downtown Bloomington Wednesday night as some 25 residents, most of them white, gathered in response to the most recent fatal police shootings of black men --  Keith Scott, a father of seven in Charlotte and Terrance Crutcher in Tulsa.

Creative Commons

LGBTQ advocates indicate there is a big need for a clinic to serve transgender people in central Illinois.

Central Illinois Pride Health Center Director Len Meyer said they are trying to qualify for non-profit status, because most go to Chicago to get hormone replacement therapy.

ISU Chief Attends White House Meeting On Policing

Jul 27, 2016
Illinois State University

Illinois State University Police Chief Aaron Woodruff was among about 70 law enforcement officers from around the nation invited recently to the White House to discuss critical issues facing the police.

Jennifer Wong/Network

 

The Nuns on the Bus who are touring the country rolled into the Republican Convention this week, hoping to talk with attendees and delegates about the nation's social issues.

Sister Mary Ellen Lacy said the sisters generally received a warm reception from those they encountered.

The sisters walked around the convention grounds with a lemonade wagon and invited attendees to talk with them about the issues they believe are important to the nation.

A Ride With The Nuns On The Bus

Jul 14, 2016
Judith Valente

Welcome to the Nuns on the Bus tour, 2016.

The socially-conscious nuns who gained national attention during the last presidential election, rolled through Bloomington-Normal this week as part of a 13 state tour that will include stops at both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions.

Lincoln Award Recipients Announced

Feb 12, 2016
Staff

A former U.S. transportation secretary, the founder of a breast cancer charity and an NPR host are recipients of this year's Order of Lincoln Awards. Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner is announcing today the six people receiving the state's highest honor this year for professional achievement and public service.

OSF Healthcare

OSF Healthcare is raising the lowest wage it is paying workers to $10 an hour. That's $1.75 per hour higher than the minimum wage in Illinois. Kristin Williams is the OSF's Vice President for Compensation and Benefits. Williams says the move stems from the religious organization's social justice values.

She says the federal poverty line for full time workers with families was one of the guides used to establish the new minimum.

Flickr user tvnewsbadge

Attorney, author and justice advocate Sister Simone Campbell is best know for leading Nuns on the Bus tours across America to draw attention to the concerns of low income workers, immigrants and people with disabilities. She's known to many in McLean County too, having given the 2013 Jim and Gwen Pruyne Lecture at New Covenant Community Church in Normal.