Michigan Department of Civil Rights

MARQUETTE, MI--   Marquette County Prosecutor Matt Wiese says he supports Governor Whitmer’s expansion of the Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards. 

In an executive order last week, the governor added to the commission the director of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights and three residents from outside the law enforcement community.

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Governor Gretchen Whitmer wants answers regarding a controversy at the state Department of Civil Rights.

Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta says that’s after department director Agustin Arbulu was disciplined for misconduct.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   Michigan's civil rights chief is condemning President Donald Trump's immigration crackdown, saying the president's executive order "hurts us all."

Agustin Arbulu is director of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. He says the United States was built around the belief that "every person must be judged by the content of their character, not by the country of their origin."

LANSING, MI (AP)--   A Michigan Supreme Court justice and state civil rights officials are highlighting new rules that establish minimum certification levels for sign language interpreters that must be provided in courtrooms, doctor's offices and elsewhere. 

The requirements, which took effect two weeks ago, are designed to ensure that deaf and deafblind individuals can communicate effectively, especially in high-stakes settings.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   Governor Rick Snyder has approved a bill package that allows people who use service animals better access to places like restaurants, retail stores and health care facilities.  

One Senate bill signed Tuesday makes it illegal to assault a service animal and to refuse entry to a person using a service animal.

Another Senate bill exempts dogs from licensing fees if they are service animals to someone with a disability or a veteran with a service-related disability.


LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   New rules take effect Monday which govern the use of sign language interpreters in Michigan. 

The state Department of Civil Rights says people who are deaf or hard of hearing need interpreters with specific skills in different settings.

“There’s a significant difference in the communication that is shared between a doctor and a patient versus what might happen in a training at your workplace,” said Leslee Fritz with the Department of Civil Rights.

“Both communications are important. One has life-altering consequences.”

LANSING, MI (AP)--   A federal agency has dismissed a complaint seeking to ban the use of American Indian mascots in Michigan's K-12 schools. 

In February, the Michigan Department of Civil Rights cited 35 Michigan school districts for discrimination, saying their mascots reinforce stereotypes and hurt American Indian students' self-esteem and learning.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   A report released Monday shows that Michigan has made some progress toward improving the lives of the 90,000 migrant and seasonal farm workers living in the state. 

The report says the number of children participating in Migrant Education Programs has increased. The state has also expanded in-season inspections of migrant housing to ensure they follow proper guidelines and are safe.

A 2010 report by the Michigan Department of Civil Rights called the condition of Michigan's migrant workers "unconscionable."

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Republican lawmakers at the state Capitol have some harsh words for the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. The department has filed a formal complaint that names 35 school districts that have American Indian mascots.

More from Michigan Public Radio’s Rick Pluta:  


The complaint was filed last week with the U.S. Department of Education and it could cost school districts federal education funds. Republican lawmakers like Representative Anthony Forlini say the complaint is an abuse of the department’s authority.

LANSING, MI (AP)--   Michigan's House Education committee chairwoman is calling on a state department to rescind its complaint over the use of American Indian mascots in schools. 

Alto Republican Representative Lisa Posthumus Lyons released a statement Monday criticizing the Michigan Department of Civil Rights for taking its complaint to the federal level.