“We’re hoping anyone interested in learning more about these issues and what they can do to assist in defending, furthering and supporting the maintenance of the democratic process, bargaining rights and the LGBT rights will attend.” -Paulette Hatchett, Acting Chair of the ACLU Lansing Education and Outreach Committee
EAST LANSING – The Lansing branch of the American Civil Liberties Union will host “Rights at Risk in Michigan,” a panel discussion to address threats to civil liberties in the state and what can be done to oppose them, during the branch’s annual meeting on April 5 at the East Lansing Public Library.
The panel consists of Brandon Jessup, chairman and chief executive Office of Michigan Forward; Karla Swift, president of the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO); and Jay Kaplan, staff attorney for the ACLU of Michigan’s LGBT Project.
According to Paulette Hatchett, acting chair of the branch’s Education and Outreach Committee, the panel’s three facilitating experts intend to inform the public about recent legislative actions and objectives threatening their civil liberties, such as the Emergency Manager Act and the rescission and prohibition of domestic partner benefits.
“We’re hoping anyone interested in learning more about these issues and what they can do to assist in defending, furthering and supporting the maintenance of the democratic process, bargaining rights and LGBT rights will attend,” said Hatchett.
Jessup will discuss the petition drive and efforts of Michigan Forward to repeal the Public Act 4, legislation imposing a state appointed Emergency Manager over local governments. Michigan Forward is a non-profit organization specializing in creating progressive public policy initiatives for state and local governments.
Swift will discuss how “Right to Work” laws threaten workers and middle class families and the how threats to collective bargaining rights are spreading nationwide.
Kaplan will address the recent legislative actions eliminating domestic partner benefits of public employees and the provision of such benefits for LGBT workers. Kaplan will also discuss other legislation that could have potential negative impacts on LGBT citizens in Michigan.
The program begins at 6:30 p.m. in the Community Room of the East Lansing Library, 950 N. Abbot Road, East Lansing. The public is welcome to participate and refreshments will be served.
The ACLU Lansing Branch also has begun scheduling presentations of its “School-To-Prison Pipeline Project,” an attempt to address issues related to the expulsion of students from public schools.
More information on the Rights At Risk in Michigan panel discussion and the School-To-Prison Pipeline Project is available at http://mi.aclu.org.