Civil Rights & Social Justice

Pa. House Speaker Mike Turzai will reintroduce Down syndrome abortion ban bill

BY: - February 13, 2019

Pennsylvania’s state House Speaker has fired the first shots of 2019’s culture war, saying he plans to reintroduce a controversial bill that would ban abortions based on a diagnosis of Down syndrome, even though critics say the legislation is practically unenforceable and most likely unconstitutional. Rep. Mike Turzai, an Allegheny County Republican, sponsored a similar […]

This is what hate and extremism looked like in Pennsylvania last year | The Numbers Racket

BY: - February 12, 2019

Welcome to The Numbers Racket, an occasional Capital-Star feature offering deep, but user-friendly, dives into some important data.

Could this be the year Pennsylvania lawmakers ban LGBTQ discrimination?

BY: - February 11, 2019

The legislation, nicknamed the Fairness Act, has never been brought up for a vote. This year could be different.

COMMENTARY

Pa. can’t be a role model on criminal justice reform if we undermine peoples’ rights | Opinion

BY: - February 9, 2019

By Andy Hoover Elected officials and corrections administrators in Pennsylvania have been doing a bit of a victory lap after the recent announcement that our state prison population dropped by 1,000 people in 2018. On the heels of the passage of the Clean Slate Act — a new law to automatically seal some people’s criminal records […]

Philly lawmaker wants Major League Baseball to honor Roberto Clemente

BY: - February 8, 2019

In 298 career games against the Philadelphia Phillies, Roberto Clemente — baseball’s first Latino star and a Pittsburgh Pirates great — slashed a .330 average against the cross-state rivals. That was his second best against any team. But even if Clemente tormented the Philly fanbase in life, Rep. Angel Cruz, a Democrat from the city, […]

As the fight over Trump’s Wall rages in Washington, Pa. Rep. Mary Gay Scanlon is headed for the Border

BY: - February 7, 2019

The delegation headed by House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer "will meet directly with immigrant advocates about the humanitarian situation as well as receive a border security briefing."

Can the Pa. Legislature be trusted to investigate its own #MeToo allegations?

BY: and - February 6, 2019

There is still no system to investigate sexual harassment complaints uniformly in the Pennsylvania General Assembly. Bipartisan lawmakers are floating proposals to change that.

COMMENTARY

Wolf, lawmakers have to step up this budget season to help survivors of sexual abuse | Opinion

BY: - February 5, 2019

The time is now to provide additional, sustained resources to help survivors weathering the storm both today and in the future.

COMMENTARY

Pa. voters spoke: On Budget Day, it’s time for Wolf, lawmakers to turn those words into action | Anwar Curtis

BY: - February 5, 2019

As the draw up a new state budget for 2019-2020, Gov. Tom Wolf and the General Assembly need to hear the voices of all Pennsylvanians. Not just special interests.

Black Caucus celebrates past, present and future with Black History Month kickoff

BY: - February 5, 2019

One month after Pennsylvania swore in its most diverse class of lawmakers ever, members of the state’s Legislative Black Caucus aren’t just celebrating Black History – they’re also making it. Pennsylvania’s Legislative Black Caucus (PLBC) kicked off Black History Month yesterday with 90 minutes of song, dance and speeches Monday in the Capitol Rotunda. Lawmakers […]

Can doctors and rising suicide rates convince Pa. lawmakers to act on guns?

BY: - February 5, 2019

When more than a dozen moderate Republican lawmakers lost their re-election bids in 2018, some advocates worried that the new makeup of Pennsylvania’s General Assembly could stymie legislation on progressive policy issues. As one of the state’s leading advocates for gun-control, Shira Goodman, executive director of CeaseFire PA, knows that moderate lawmakers can drum up […]

This powerful Capitol committee has a new chair. He’s not Daryl Metcalfe 2.0

BY: - February 5, 2019

Colleagues expect new House State Government Chair Garth Everett will bring decorum and cooperation to Metcalfe’s old committee