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Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Union Membership Hits New Low

Fewer American workers belong to labor unions than at any time since the government began tracking membership, according to a new report released Thursday.  The Bureau of Labor Statistics said just 10.7 percent of American workers were members of labor unions in 2016, down from 11.1 percent the previous year, and down from 20.1 percent in 1983, the first year the bureau collected union statistics. Continue reading.
The City of Detroit is weighing in on a high-profile literacy lawsuit that accuses state officials of denying Detroit students access to literacy.  Eli Savit, an attorney representing the city, filed an amicus brief today in U.S. District Court in Detroit that argues access to literacy is a fundamental right. It asks Judge Stephen J. Murphy III to shoot down the state's request to dismiss the case. Continue reading.
Philadelphia is the first city in the nation that prohibits employers from asking about a job applicant's prior earnings.  Mayor Kenney signed the Wage Equity Law on Monday, after City Solicitor Sozi Tulante issued an 11-page opinion arguing for the legality of the ban. The law was created to bridge the gender pay gap. Continue reading.
On President Barack Obama's last full day in office, the U.S. Department of Transportation said it would conduct a sweeping review of Maryland's transportation policies to determine whether they violate federal civil rights rules. Continue reading.
A federal court ruled that 12 of Alabama's legislative districts were unconstitutional, citing an improper use of race in their composition.  The three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals enjoined the use of the districts in future elections but stopped short of intervening in the drawing of new districts. Continue reading.
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up Texas’ effort to salvage its strict voter identification law, handing at least a temporary victory to civil rights advocates who have successfully argued that the law discriminates against minorities. Continue reading.
Gov. Scott Walker wants parents who receive food stamps to work at least 80 hours per month to continue to receive full benefits.  Walker made the announcement Monday in appearances around the state promoting changes dubbed “Wisconsin Works for Everyone” that he plans to make to the state’s welfare programs. Continue reading.
The seven lucky balls that popped out of the Arizona Department of Health Services lottery machine in October produced big winners — not in the state’s Powerball game, but in the competition to make money in the medical marijuana industry. Continue reading.
African Americans make up only 4.2 percent of Colorado’s population but account for 12.4 percent of arrests and criminal summonses in the state, Reuters reports. Continue reading.
A group of Maryland lawmakers is pushing Gov. Larry Hogan and the General Assembly to increase financial assistance for families struggling to cover child-care costs, noting that the state ranks among the least generous in the nation for such aid. Continue reading.

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