Thursday, March 30, 2023


Nebraska attorneys develop a workers rights program, the FDA approves over-the-counter sales of the overdose-reversing drug Naloxone, and mayors look for new ways to partner with the federal government.


The Senate repeals authorization of military force in Iraq, the former CEO of Starbucks testifies about the company's worker policies, and Kentucky overrides the governor's veto of gender-affirming care for children.


Small towns respond to a hidden housing and homelessness crisis, a new national weather prediction system will help close the gap between urban and rural forecasting, and more rural communities are eligible for a design project to boost economic development.

WI Lawmakers Reintroduce 'Economic Justice Bill of Rights'


Tuesday, March 22, 2022   

Wisconsin's legislative session has concluded, but Democrats still are pushing for a so-called "Economic Justice Bill of Rights."

Among other things, the resolution holds people are entitled to the right to unionize and access affordable health care and housing. It is nonbinding and essentially an affirmation of support for those principles.

Rep. Francesca Hong, D-Madison, said a previous version of the resolution, which stagnated in the Legislature, served as inspiration for several bills in this past session.

"We are fighting for these values outlined in the Economic Justice Bill of Rights because we value humanity, Wisconsinites, their dignity, and we know that everyone deserves a right to safety," Hong outlined.

The chances of the measure passing through the Republican-held Legislature are slim at best. When the first version of the resolution was introduced last March, it was referred to a legislative Rules Committee, where it stagnated for a year before expiring with the end of the session a few weeks ago.

Rabbi Bonni Margulis, president of Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice, said the COVID-19 pandemic exposed deep economic inequities, and the resolution could be a first step toward addressing disparities. Hers is one of several social-justice organizations supporting the measure.

"As we have seen low-income and communities of color bear the brunt of COVID, we've had to acknowledge that disparities in health outcomes are directly linked to lack of access to good-paying jobs, health insurance, safe affordable housing, clean air and clean water," Margulis explained.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Wisconsin's unemployment rate hit 3% in January, matching pre-pandemic levels, which were the lowest since at least 2002.

Unless Gov. Tony Evers convenes a special session, and Republican leaders agree to take up new bills, lawmakers are not scheduled to return to the Capitol until 2023.

get more stories like this via email
The report outlines ways that higher education could be creative and flexible with how schools are using their platforms to reach students. (Adobe stock)

Social Issues

New findings confirm suspicions about the top reasons many students considered dropping out of college over the last six months. The Gallup and …

Social Issues

Two reports confirm a troubling trend in terms of Black students attending college. According to the University System of Georgia, enrollment among …

Health and Wellness

States such as Minnesota continue to grapple with recent spikes in fatal overdoses tied to opioids. Now, a federal agency has taken what aid groups …

The Warrior Way Back program at Wayne State University works with older students who may have families or jobs competing for their study time. (digitalskillet/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

Everyone starts college with pretty much the same dream - to earn a degree and have a better life. But sometimes life gets in the way, and dreams get …

Social Issues

Food assistance is integral for families - but it's also important that the food available makes sense culturally. The American Heart Association …

The Castner Range contains cultural sites that document the history of Native tribes, while also providing habitat for wildlife such as the golden eagle, mountain lions and the western burrowing owl. (Dale/AdobeStock)


A celebration will be held in El Paso Friday after five decades of activism paid off, when President Joe Biden designated Texas' Castner Range a …

Social Issues

The Iowa Senate has advanced a bill to outlaw handling a cellphone while driving. The state already has a distracted driving law, but it allows …

Social Issues

With an average hourly wage of under $15 in 2021, many Nebraska agricultural workers would be hard-pressed to afford an attorney if they needed one …


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021