Julia LaRoe

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Opinion: Michigan expungement law will give many residents a new future

Bipartisan ‘Clean Slate’ legislation is now law after gaining signature from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, which will expand the eligibility for criminal record expungement. Having a criminal record has effects that reverberate throughout a person’s life, including long after the offense happened. This legislation is a needed step in the right direction to transforming Michigan’s criminal justice system.

Opinion: A vote for Joe Biden is a vote for a chance at the future

With the presidential election right around the corner, time is dwindling for voters that are on the fence about voting for Joe Biden to make their choice. With valid concerns about the effectiveness of the electoral process, undecided voters might question whether voting in 2020 matters. I’m here to argue the many reasons why a vote for Biden does effect the livelihoods of Americans, and why that is important even if you do not believe his presidency would bring radical change.

Opinion: prioritizing public health is not tyranny

Zooming in on the state of affairs with Coronavirus in Michigan, there is a standoff between the Governor’s ability to renew the State of Emergency without Legislative approval. The Legislature, with a Republican majprity, is arguing the use of emergency powers is an overreach, while Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and her administration says the law gives her the right to exercise those powers in a crisis. Who is interested in public health, and who is interested in political and financial gains for themselves?

Opinion: Universities are focused on wealth over health in campus reopening plans

The University of Michigan filed a lawsuit against its grad student employees for the “disruptive” strike to get better COVID-19 protections and reforming policing on campus. While cancelled classes do disrupt schedules, a large infection rate would be much more disruptive. This is all part of the larger phenomena of university administrations insisting on a safe return to campus without much consultation with those who it will affect most. 

Opinion: Incarcerated people are being left out of the COVID-19 conversation

 Amidst another spike in cases in Michigan’s correctional facilities, protections for incarcerated folks are few and far between. Inmates are facing neglect in both preventative measures and treatment for COVID-19. Someone’s criminal record should not prevent them from getting the care and protection they need during a global pandemic.