Southwest Michigan Today: Monday September 17, 2018

Sep 17, 2018

Catholic Diocese of Kalamazoo Bishop Paul Bradley
Credit Catholic Diocese of Kalamazoo

Will the lack of straight party voting cause confusion in the November election? The Catholic Diocese of Kalamazoo issues a “plan to protect.” Governor Snyder seeks more trade with China amid threats of more tariffs. 

(Michigan Radio) A county clerk is predicting confusion when absentee ballots start arriving in the next few weeks. Genesee County Clerk John Gleason says about half of his county’s residents regularly use the straight party voting option. But that option is not available this year. The U.S. Supreme Court declined a request earlier this month to keep the option on the November ballot.

The Catholic Diocese of Kalamazoo has released what it calls a “Plan to Protect” in response to allegations of sexual abuse in the church. Last month a Pennsylvania grand jury report detailed decades of abuse by religious leaders, and how those allegations were concealed in several churches across that state. Diocese of Kalamazoo Bishop Paul Bradley says the ten point plan includes evaluating programs for providing a safe environment and reporting of allegations of misconduct. The Diocese also plans to establish a “Consultative Body of Lay Experts” and to create a code of conduct for all clergy and lay leaders in the church.

(WKAR) The Diocese of Lansing says it will hire an independent agency to audit its sexual abuse investigation procedures. Bishop Earl Boyea says an outside audit is necessary to show its transparency to the public. The Lansing Diocese follows a national sexual abuse policy adopted by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in 2002.

(MPRN) A handful of Michigan groups are renewing their fight against the travel ban which restricts people from several Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States. In June, the United States Supreme Court said the travel ban that limits people from 7 countries can continue while its constitutionality is decided in court. The ACLU of Michigan had already filed a lawsuit with organizations including the Arab American Civil Rights League and the American Arab Chamber of Commerce. Their goal is to keep families together by proving religious discrimination. Recently they amended their lawsuit to contest President Trump’s latest version of the travel ban. The White House has said the areas cited in the ban failed to meet minimum requirements for screening and vetting.

(Michigan Radio) A pilot project in suburban Detroit will offer people struggling with opioid addiction a possible path to recovery. The Rescue Recovery program involves access to a detox program, and long term peer coaching from recovering addicts. Eighteen law enforcement agencies will refer potential candidates to the program. So will Livonia's Saint Mary Mercy Hospital. The hospital will also offer specialized detox treatments.

(WDET) Governor Rick Snyder continues a trade mission to China this week just as President Donald Trump is reportedly preparing to impose huge new tariffs on Chinese goods. Snyder says he and a contingent of business representatives will outline the manufacturing…automotive and agricultural opportunities available in Michigan, as they have on past trade missions. But Snyder’s pitch comes just as the trade war between the U.S. and China appears ready to escalate. The Wall Street Journal reports the Trump Administration is set to impose new tariffs on about 200 billion dollars’ worth of goods that come from China…citing unfair trade practices.