Civil Rights

Violence against Indigenous women is a crisis in the U.S., report finds

BY: - November 11, 2021

Violence against Indigenous women in the U.S. is a crisis, but the extent of the problem remains unknown, according to a report released by the U.S. Government Accountability Office. “There’s no one single database that has all this information,” said Gretta Goodwin, the director of GAO’s Homeland Security and Justice team. “So the full scope […]

If Missouri doesn’t spend its federal rental and utility assistance money it could lose it

BY: - October 29, 2021

Jill McCormick shook her head and lifted her eyes to the ceiling.  “What is the hold up for getting that money directly to [tenants]?” McCormick, a tenant advocate with the nonprofit Action St. Louis, asked St. Louis’ new director of human services, Yusef Scoggin, at a community meeting Tuesday. The city has received more applications […]

Broader tribal sovereignty at stake in federal Indian Child Welfare Act case

BY: - October 26, 2021

A federal law to protect Native families from being separated is on a likely path to the U.S. Supreme Court, where the 41-year-old law could be upended — threatening tribal sovereignty. And while child welfare is the specific issue at the heart of the case, tribal advocates contend the real goal of the deep-pocketed effort […]

First Lady Biden convenes charla in Kansas City to explore challenges of Latino trailblazers

BY: - October 13, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Kan. — First Lady Jill Biden toured a nonprofit serving Latino communities throughout Wyandotte and Johnson counties Monday for insight into challenges of trailblazing entrepreneurs, a university student and a poet. At the offices of the nonprofit El Centro, Biden marked Hispanic Heritage Month with Isbella Guzman, administrator of the U.S. Small Business […]

Judge blocks residency rule for Missouri medical marijuana licenses

BY: - October 12, 2021

A federal judge last week permanently blocked Missouri from enforcing a requirement that medical marijuana licenses go to businesses owned by residents of the state. Following a bench trial Thursday, U.S. District Judge Nanette Laughrey agreed to grant a permanent injunction. Her written order has not yet been filed. News of the injunction was first reported […]

A DOJ partnership is hoping to change how Kansas City handles violence prevention

BY: - October 11, 2021

This story was originally published by the Kansas City Beacon.  Several years after the embattled violence-reduction program known as KC No Violence Alliance faded from public view, Mayor Quinton Lucas’ administration is working with federal authorities and community partners to revive and broaden the strategies that for a time seemed to be making a difference in Kansas […]

For-profit federal prison an understaffed ‘hell hole’ of violence, death and drugs

BY: - October 7, 2021

LEAVENWORTH, Kan. — Dangerous understaffing, pervasive drugs and a stockpile of weapons have transformed a private detention center in Kansas into a “hell hole” where violence is routine and inmates are still on lockdown after one was beaten to death this summer. The Leavenworth Detention Center, a pretrial lockup run by the nation’s largest private […]

Jennifer Tidball and Joanie Rogers

Lawmakers seethe at Missouri agency over failure to report missing foster kids

BY: - October 5, 2021

Exasperated lawmakers slammed leaders of the Missouri Department of Social Services on Tuesday, accusing them of passing off blame for a federal review that found the state fails to adequately report missing foster children. Tuesday’s hearing of the House Children and Families Committee was spurred by a report issued last week by the U.S Department […]

St. Louis asks appeals court to force protestor to pay attorney fees for suing police

BY: and - October 5, 2021

An attorney for the city of St. Louis argued in court Tuesday that a woman who sued a police officer for excessive force must pay $57,000 in attorneys fees the city spent on the case. Kristine “Kris” Hendrix filed a lawsuit in 2017 claiming that two St. Louis officers used excessive force, tasing her repeatedly […]

As Missouri Hispanic population grows, building trust is key to bridging cultural gap

BY: - October 4, 2021

When Eduardo Crespi was working as a nurse at University of Missouri Hospital in Columbia more than 20 years ago, he’d have a full load of patients to care for. But on top of that, he would also get called to translate for Spanish-speaking patients who weren’t his own.  “That’s how it started,” he said. […]

Jennifer Tidball

Federal watchdog finds Missouri failed to adequately report, protect missing foster kids

BY: - September 30, 2021

A federal watchdog found that Missouri failed to sufficiently reduce children’s risk of going missing from the foster care system and frequently failed to notify local and federal authorities they were missing. A report by the U.S Department of Health Human Services Office of Inspector General issued Thursday found that the Department of Social Services’ […]

St. Louis fights to force protestor to pay thousands in attorney fees for suing police

BY: - September 30, 2021

Around midnight in May 2015, Kristine “Kris” Hendrix was walking to her car after a Black Lives Matter protest in downtown St. Louis. As a mother of three Black boys and an elected school board member, Hendrix says she was moved to march in the street alongside dozens of others to speak out against the […]