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MSU amplifies summer camp

Families can register youth now for one of two weeklong summer music day camps held at the Michigan State University Detroit Center in Midtown. MSU Rock Camp takes place June 16-20 from 1-5 p.m. each day, and the Aspiring Musicians Program Camp is June 23-27 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily. Both camps are part of MSU’s Community Music School program. Rock Camp, led by professional rockers and music educators Th ...

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Jackson Rising

The first weekend in May, I was able to attend the Jackson Rising: New Economies Conference in Jackson, Miss., with an incredible Detroit delegation. The conference was birthed out of the vision of late Jackson Mayor Chokwe Lumumba (Baba Chokwe), the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement (MXGM), which he founded, and the Jackson Peoples’ Assembly. ...

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Michigan fast-food workers join international call for a $15 wage

While high profile morning protests and strikes took place May 15 at McDonald’s restaurants in Pontiac, Lansing, Detroit and Flint, smaller walkouts happened in at least two dozen Michigan cities, organizers said. Workers from all the major brands — from Subway to Burger King to Wendy’s — joined in the worldwide rally for wages that took place in 150 cities nationwide and at least 33 countries. ...

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Oklahoma executions reveal secrecy, inhumanity

The state of the flawed executions in America was by no means a secret, but it took a botched attempt in front of a tweeting reporter and witnesses to bring the true depth of this problem into the public eye. Though Oklahoma prison officials tried to pull the curtain to block the view of those watching a man, who was supposed to be killed quickly and “humanely” as required by the law, quiver, shake and try ...

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Marissa Alexander was a Mother’s Day symbol for Black women victims

Mother’s Day is an annual day to recognize all mothers, but a group of activists this year asked the special day for mothers be used to acknowledge two special groups — mothers who are victims of domestic abuse and those who are in prison. “Mother’s Day is special time to remember all mothers no matter where they are,” said Sumayya “Fire” Coleman, national organizer of the African American/Black Women’s Cul ...

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Keeping control

The debate currently underway in Lansing is focusing on how long the state will retain control over the city of Detroit. If the legislature is going to contribute more than $350 million to Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr’s so-called “grand bargain” that is part of his bankruptcy plan, then it wants “oversight” long after Orr leaves office. Twenty years of oversight. ...

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‘It won’t be a quiet summer’ as groups campaign for voters

The civil rights community’s get-out-the-vote machine is slowly reawakening. But, given what’s at stake in this year’s mid-term elections, activists say, GOTV campaigners need to shake off the malaise — ASAP. “It is too quiet, and we’ve got to get busy really fast,” said Melanie Campbell, president and CEO of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation, adding many groups seem to be in the planning ...

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Tough getting a job after 55

If you’re 55 or older and hunting for a job, good luck. Michigan is one of the worst states for your employment prospects. Governing Magazine recently reported data showing nationwide employment-to-population ratios, a common economic measure of what proportion of a state’s eligible working-age population is employed. Michigan is the third worst in the nation for older workers, at 32.3 percent of residents ...

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Michigan cuts to higher ed among worst in country

Michigan has cut funding to public universities and colleges deeper than 37 other states since the start of the Great Recession, according to a new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. As a result, tuition has risen dramatically, making it harder for many to go to college and for the state to attract businesses that rely on a well-educated workforce. ...

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