Okemos Public Schools was closed due to Tuesday’s midterm election, but many Meridian Township parents still found themselves on school grounds. A total of 18 children came along with their parents as they cast their votes around noon at Murphy Elementary School. Stacy Liddick brought her children Nicholas and Allison. “We have to make decisions as people who want change,” 9-year-old Alison said. “They need to know that in order to see change, voices need to be heard,” said Liddick.
Due to recent fire statistics, Fire Inspector Tom Millerov is concerned about the safety of the community. He said: “The numbers currently are above average for the number of fire fatalities per year in Michigan. So there is a really big push right now to remind people to make sure that they have a working smoke alarm in their home and to make sure that they are practicing fire safety and know how to get out of their home in case of an emergency.”
On Oct. 13, the Meridian Township Fire Department had its fire prevention open house where community members had the opportunity to visit the fire station and learn about fire prevention techniques. Millerov said that this event is important because it allows kids to interact with the fire department in a nonemergency setting so that they can know what to do when an emergency does arise.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and the city of Lansing chose to go the distance and think pink. The Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk was held at the State Capitol building. The walk is a noncompetitive 3 to 5-mile walk that brings people together to make a difference for everyone who has been touched by the disease. What started as volunteering turned into a mission for Katie Jones. “I am a senior manager for community development at the American Cancer Society which means I get to work with thousands of volunteers across the mid-Michigan Lansing and Flint markets,” Jones said.
When Meridian Township voters opened their absentee ballot marking instructions, they were presented with directions on how to vote straight party even though straight ticket voting is banned for the Nov. 6 general election in Michigan. “I was contacted by a voter last week who was confused because the instructions that are included with the absentee ballot that was mailed to them included instructions on how to mark a straight party ballot,” said Ingham County Clerk, Barb Byrum. Although the instructions were incorrect, voters do not need to worry because the ballot is accurate. Meridian Township Clerk Brett Dreyfus said that there is no need for voter confusion because there is no straight party option on the ballot.
It’s sad how Michigan State knew about the sexual misconduct of Larry Nassar but didn’t do anything, said David Mittleman, attorney who represents 37 victims of Larry Nassar. Nassar was sentenced to 60 years in prison, three counts of 20 years each, for child pornography. He has seven counts against him and is waiting for trail to hear his sentencing for the other counts that he has not been charged for. Nassar sexually assaulted and abused members of the Michigan State University gymnastics team and members of the USA Olympic gymnastics team. “This is the biggest institutional sexual assault scandal in modern day history,” said Mittleman.
EAST LANSING, Mich. — During Halloween in 2016, Sharon Thomas, a human biology major at University of Michigan, was walking through the neighborhood of Cedar Village around 8 p.m. when a man called her from across the street. “He said, ‘Hey, baby, you look fine,’ then he ran over to me from across the road,” said Thomas. “I didn’t really register what he was doing at the moment.”
Thomas said the man ran up to her and grabbed her waist while complimenting her. She pushed him away physically, but she couldn’t get him out of her mind.
TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. — Human Rights commissioners of Traverse City are allegedly looking to make the northwestern Michigan city more “immigrant-friendly.” One way of doing so would be to declare sanctuary status, or making TC known as a “Welcoming City.”
“There are jobs in Northern Michigan that need immigrants to take them,” says Mark Dixon, who has been a citizen of Traverse City for over 60 years. “Faming here, especially with the abundance of cherry crops, attracts a lot of immigrants, as well as some jobs at Munson, the local hospital.”
“This had never been an issue before (President Donald) Trump’s presidency,” says Dixon. “I think this is because he initially campaigned with restrictions to countries like Mexico by ‘building a wall’ across the border.”
Early in Trump’s presidency, an executive order attempted to withhold federal grants to sanctuary cities. However, at the end of April, a federal judge in San Francisco put a nationwide end to this.