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Sarah Cwiek

Sarah Cwiek - Detroit Reporter/Producer

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Radio in October, 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit. Before her arrival at Michigan Radio, Sarah worked at WDET-FM as a reporter and producer.

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Photo by Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

One Detroit city council member is putting forth a slew of proposals she says will help correct some major inequities in the city.

Council President Pro-Tem Mary Sheffield’s bills aim to address a widely-held perception: that while pockets of Detroit boom with new development, most of the city’s longtime residents aren’t seeing any benefits. These bills deal with some of the city's most pressing "socioeconomic and human rights issues," Sheffield said.

Melissa Benmark / Michigan Radio

A pilot project in western Wayne County will offer people struggling with opioid addiction a possible path to recovery.

The Rescue Recovery program will provide people referred from St. Mary Mercy Livonia hospital or one of 18 participating law enforcement agencies with the opportunity to go through specialized detoxification treatment at the hospital.

Diane Newman

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement will allow a deaf, cognitively-disabled Detroit man to “make arrangements to depart the U.S. voluntarily,” the agency said Wednesday.

Francis Anwana faced an initial deportation deadline Tuesday. But ICE backed off that deadline after pushback from Anwana’s advocates and at least one member of Congress.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Detroit has a new four-year plan to deal with the city’s transportation challenges from end-to-end, city officials announced Friday.

“For the first time in many years, the city of Detroit has a strategic transportation plan,” Mayor Mike Duggan said.

University Research Corridor / via Facebook

The presidents of Michigan’s three major research universities talked about state funding and campus sexual assault, and touted their combined research contributions and economic clout at the Detroit Economic Club Wednesday.

Nikolai Vitti
Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Michigan’s largest school district was back in session Tuesday, as around 50,000 students in the Detroit Public Schools Community District headed back to class.

Students and staff came back to a handful of big changes, some more visible than others.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

It’s Labor Day, and that means political candidates are stumping for votes at events around the state – and many Democrats were in Detroit for the city’s annual Labor Day Parade.

Gubernatorial candidate Gretchen Whitmer and running mate Garlin Gilchrist met with skilled trades, Teamsters, and UAW union members.

They also rallied with Service Employees International Union President Mary Kay Henry and SEIU members, where Whitmer pledged to use the governor’s office to champion the interests of labor.

The Tricycle Collective is working to help keep families in their homes through the tax foreclosure crisis in Detroit.
Michele Oberholtzer

515 Detroit families have the opportunity to stay living homes that were headed to tax foreclosure auction this fall.

They’re on the list for a buy-back program that involves the city of Detroit, Wayne County, and a non-profit housing group.

Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

There’s now a larger pot of money to help households struggling to pay water bills in Detroit and Flint. It comes from the Great Lakes Water Authority’s Water Residential Assistance Program, known as WRAP.

The GLWA board had $1.2 million dollars in WRAP funds dedicated to other communities left over from its last budget year. So it’s channeling that money into Detroit and Flint, where the need is greatest.

A SMART bus.
SMART

A razor-thin vote to continue supporting the SMART bus system has survived a recount in Macomb County.

Macomb voters approved the millage by just 39 votes this month. That prompted the group Michigan Taxpayers Alliance to  request a partial recount.

The University of Michigan Health System has been hit with a $4.3 million fine for violating federal drug control laws, per a new legal settlement with the U.S. government.

The settlement lays out just a portion of what the government calls, at minimum, thousands of violations of the Controlled Substances Act over a period of years.

Students at computers
User: Extra Ketchup / creative commons

When it comes to standardized testing, Michigan’s students don’t seem to be performing any better than in recent years — or too much worse.

The Michigan Department of Education released the results of the 2018 M-STEP test Wednesday.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Detroit officials say they are continuously upgrading bus service after it was gutted by years of cutbacks and bankruptcy.

The city announced Tuesday that starting September it will offer 15-minute service and new buses with Wi-Fi along the city’s ten busiest routes next month.

Christopher Graveline
cg4ag.com

The Michigan Secretary of State must place an independent candidate for Attorney General’s name on the November ballot if he submits the right paperwork, a federal judge ruled Monday.

Independent candidate Christopher Graveline submitted nominating petitions with over 14,000 signatures by the state deadline in July. But those were rejected because Graveline did not meet the 30,000-signature threshold required by state law.

insurancequotes.com

In nearly every state, your credit score impacts how much you pay for car insurance.

But according to a new report from insurancequotes.com, it matters more in Michigan than anywhere else.

detroit police car
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

An African-American police officer is suing the Detroit police department, claiming rampant racial discrimination, a hostile work environment, and an atmosphere of retaliation against black officers.

11-year department veteran Johnny Strickland lays out that case in a new federal civil rights lawsuit. It accuses Detroit police of fostering widespread racial discrimination, where white supervisors retaliate against black subordinates who complain.

U.S. Centers for Disease Control

While official data is still coming in, it appears that Michigan’s drug overdose deaths are continuing their upward trajectory since the start of 2017.

According to projections from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control released earlier this month, Michigan saw 2,662 drug-related deaths in 2017.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Michigan school districts are still racing to fill teaching positions before the new school year starts.

The Michigan Department of Education hosted a teacher hiring fair in Lansing last week.  Around 100 public school districts and charter schools attended, as did around 475 job-seekers, said Rebekah Emmerling, manager of the educator evaluation and professional growth unit at MDE.

Aretha Franklin
flickr user ktkatrina

Memorial and funeral plans have been announced for Detroit’s own Queen of Soul.

Arethan Franklin will lie in state at Detroit’s Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History on August 28 and 29. The viewing will be open to the public.

That will be followed by a private funeral at Greater Grace Temple on August 30.

Aaron Salter
Michigan Department of Corrections

After spending 15 years behind bars for a murder he didn’t commit, Aaron Salter walked out of prison a free man Wednesday, as Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy dismissed charges against him.

Salter was convicted of shooting at four people on a Detroit porch 2003. One man was killed, and Salter was tried and convicted of the murder based solely on eyewitness testimony from one of the victims.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

Another 50 Detroit families will own the homes they currently live in, thanks to a city program.

ballot
Emma Winowiecki / Michigan Radio

The Wayne County Board of Canvassers heard what went wrong with the county’s election results website last Tuesday, as questions and concerns linger about problems with the Aug. 7 primary election.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

A new federal grant will help Detroit expand the historic district around the site of an iconic civil rights battle.

That battle took place in 1925, when African-American doctor Ossian Sweet’s family moved into a new home on Garland Street on Detroit’s east side. At the time, it was an all-white neighborhood.

Detroit brought in new voting equipment for 2017 elections after rampant problems with 2016 vote.
Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

The Wayne County Board of Canvassers wants to know what went wrong with the county’s election website during last week’s primary.

The board is expected to meet Monday with the CEO of ElectionSource, the Grand Rapids-based company that runs the county’s election results reporting website, to try and get answers.

Sarah Cwiek / Michigan Radio

A small crowd rallied in front of Detroit’s U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement office on Friday, calling on the agency to release Banny Doumbia.

Doumbia is an Ivory Coast native and Detroit father who has been in the U.S. for nearly 30 years. His family says he was detained without explanation after a routine ICE check-in last week.

A SMART bus.
wikipedia

A recount looks likely for a bus service millage renewal that just barely passed in Macomb County this week.

Voters in Wayne and Oakland counties overwhelmingly approved the millage to continue SMART bus service in metro Detroit. But according to unofficial election results, Macomb County voters approved it by just 23 votes.

Detroit City Council

A split result between a special and regular election in Michigan’s 13th Congressional District has led to an odd and potentially sticky situation.

Detroit City Council President Brenda Jones won the special election fill out the rest of Congressman John Conyers’ term starting in November.

Rashida Tlaib for Congress / via Twitter

Rashida Tlaib has declared victory in the 13th Congressional District race.

Tlaib faced off against five other Democrats in the primary that should be decisive in the heavily-Democratic district, where no Republicans are running for the U.S. House seat vacated by John Conyers.

a map of Michigan's 13th Congressional district
Federal Election Commission

Since longtime Detroit Congressman John Conyers stepped down in December in the wake of sexual harassment allegations, Michigan’s 13th District hasn’t had a representative in Congress.

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