Stateside: LGBTQ civil rights protections; Native American tuition waivers; oldest state parks
Today on Stateside, we talk to a business leader who wants legal protections for LGBTQ people, and a gay politician who says they are not needed. Plus, an updated system for driverless cars is being tested on the streets of Detroit. Are people ready for them?
Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below.
Herman Miller CEO: Michigan struggles to attract talent without LGBTQ civil protections
- In Michigan, you can be denied employment, housing, and services because you’re gay. Michigan’s civil rights legislation, known as the Elliot-Larsen Civil Rights Act, does not currently extend to the LGBTQ community. But this could be changing. There's a bill in the state Legislature that would add sexual orientation and gender identity to protected categories under Elliot-Larsen.
- Andi Owen, the CEO of Herman Miller, talks about why she's urging lawmakers to expand civil rights protections, which she says are good for business. Leon Drolet is a Macomb County commissioner, who is himself gay. He says expanding Elliot-Larsen to include protections for LGBTQ Michiganders is unnecessary. Drolet argues that cases of job and housing discrimination are rare, and that many private companies already include workplace protections for LGBTQ employees.
The must-sees of Mackinac Island State Park
- This year marks the 100th anniversary of the Michigan State Park System. Some of the oldest parks are by the Straits of Mackinac, including Mackinac Island State Park. Dominick Miller, marketing manager for the Mackinac State Historic Parks, talks about what makes the state's oldest parks some of its most special.
Driverless cars hit Detroit streets thanks to partnership between Ford, Argo AI
- Driverless cars are making their way to the streets of Detroit. Argo AI is an autonomous vehicle manufacturer working with Ford to test new vehicles in the city. Peter Rander, the president of Argo AI, joins Stateside to talk about the challenges of navigating a complex city like Detroit, and what he expects in the future from driverless cars.
- Stateside host Lester Graham and Tammy Coxen of Tammy’s Tastings mix up a “Beer’s Knees,” a beer-based twist on a Prohibition-era cocktail.
After two decades of shortfalls, lawmakers propose full funding for Native American college tuition waivers
- The state has been shortchanging four year colleges and universities for nearly two decades. It is supposed to pick up the cost of tuition for Native American college students who qualify. But this is the first year in nearly two decades the state Legislature is proposing picking up the full tab.
- Representative Scott Van Singel is the Republican Chair of the House Appropriations Subcommittee. He talks about the reasons for the lapsed funding, and the decision to include full funding in this year's House budget. Martin Reinhardt is the president of the Michigan Indian Education Council and a professor at Northern Michigan University's Center for Native American Studies. He shares the specifics of the waiver law, and what it means for the state's Native American students.
Political roundup: Michigan House budget proposes cuts IT, rides for seniors, transportation money
- The Michigan House passed its version of the state budget last week. We talk about the good, the bad, and the ugly with our Friday political commentators.
- Vicki Barnett is a former mayor of Farmington Hills and a former Democratic state representative. Ken Sikkema is a senior policy fellow with Public Sector Consultants and a former Republican majority leader of the Michigan Senate.