civil rights

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On MLK Jr. Day, a look in Connecticut at challenges ahead

Connecticut's replica of the Liberty Bell rang three times at noon to honor Martin Luther King Jr.

A suburban pastor recalled Monday how Connecticut was the place where a teenaged Martin Luther King Jr. first escaped the Jim Crow laws of the racially divided South, a bittersweet experience that would profoundly shape King’s view of racial injustice in America. And a gay, white adoptive father of three black sons spoke of living a “transcultural life.” It was all in observance of the 30th Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday. Continue Reading →

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Hartford police begin New Year with old civil rights problem

Graduates of a Hartford Police Department Academy class in 2012.

It was the late 1960s and many American cities were ablaze with racial tensions involving police that often resulted in rioting and violence. Hartford was no exception. The result was a lawsuit and a legal agreement for the city to make a number of changes, including hiring more minority police officers. But after more than 40 years, the police force is still bound by the agreement and struggling to more closely mirror its community. Continue Reading →

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Hartford mayor, police chief, help Obama sell policing initiative

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra, left, outside the White House with Bishop Jeremiah Torres and Police Chief James Rovella, right.

WASHINGTON – Mayor Pedro Segarra and Hartford Police Chief James Rovella were among dozens of officials invited to the White House Thursday to help President Obama promote a policing initiative aimed at preventing the types of police shootings that touched off riots in Ferguson, Mo., and Baltimore. Continue Reading →

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Murphy hopes to amend education bill to address civil rights concerns

Sen. Chris Murphy speaking on the floor of the U.S. Senate about ISIL.

WASHINGTON – Sen. Chris Murphy hopes to amend a new federal education bill so that problem schools and under-performing students could be more clearly identified — and given the help they need. The new bill before the Senate would replace the controversial No Child Left Behind Act. Continue Reading →

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Esty to join Obama, Bush and dozens of lawmakers in Selma

A sign marking the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail.

WASHINGTON – President Obama, former President George W. Bush and dozens of lawmakers, including Connecticut’s Rep. Elizabeth Esty, plan to converge on Selma, Ala., this weekend to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the historic march that led to approval of the Voting Rights Act. Continue Reading →

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State to review CT police use of military equipment

The Willimantic Police Department's SWAT vehicle given to the town by the Department of Defense.

WASHINGTON – Connecticut’s police chiefs assured the state’s U.S. senators that the abuses of police authority that occurred in Ferguson, Mo., would likely not happen in Connecticut. But it’s likely Connecticut cops’ use of military equipment to fight crime is soon coming under review. Continue Reading →

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