The Obama Administration has issued a directive protecting the civil rights of transgender students. Photo courtesy Flickr/Daniel Borman
There's never a slow news week in Jackson, Miss., and last week was no exception. Here are the local stories JFP reporters brought you in case you missed them:
- On Friday the Obama administration issued a directive offering "significant guidance" to school districts on curbing sex-based discrimination in schools, specifically against students who do not identify with the gender commonly linked to their biological sex.
- More than a dozen domestic violence activists gathered at the Mississippi Coalition Against Domestic Violence headquarters on May 11 in response to the failure of SB 2418, the 'divorce bill' that would have created legal provisions to make domestic violence grounds for divorce in the state.
- Gov. Phil Bryant signed Senate Bill 2238 on Tuesday, a law that blocks the state's Medicaid division from paying for "costs of care and services" at providers who also offer abortion services—anywhere in the state.
- Dr. Carey Wright, state superintendent of education, recently sat down with the Jackson Free Press to talk about education legislation, school funding and charter schools.
- The Jackson Department of Public Works has recommended a new "sludge" contract to haul away of waste stored in the wastewater plants. An Environmental Protection Agency consent decree gives the City until 2017 to remove the waste.
- The Mississippi Department of Corrections is ending the Regimented Inmate Discipline program, a paramilitary program for offenders with earned probation, and replacing it with a Recidivism Reduction Program, which will include cognitive behavioral therapy.
- Efforts to reduce the state's infant mortality rate—the highest in the country—will go on the chopping block if Gov. Phil Bryant signs the Legislature's version of the state budget into law, the state's top health officer told the Jackson Free Press.
- In the wake of fears raised after a parent pulled a gun at Forest Hill High School last week, JPD Chief Lee Vance said that Jackson Public Schools polices itself in a public One-on-One conversation at Millsaps College with Jackson Free Press Editor Donna Ladd on Monday night.
- The ACLU filed the first federal lawsuit contesting House Bill 1523 on Monday, naming the Mississippi State Registrar of Vital Records as the defendant because that state office would have to collect a list of clerks who are recusing themselves from issuing same-sex marriage licenses as allowed in House Bill 1523.
- Jackson City Council members today accused Mayor Tony Yarber and his administration of concealing information that could show whether or not the City's budget reserves are depleted.
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