MCHR represented by board member Kim Redigan at recent events in solidarity with Muslims and incoming refugees

MCHR was proudly represented by board member Kim Redigan at Monday’s “One Nation, One Voice Against Bigotry and Hate Coalition”; a group of speakers from civil rights organizations, government officials, and religious communities that gathered to speak out against discrimination and xenophobia experienced by our Muslim neighbors and incoming refugees.

There was also a rally in Ferndale on Monday to show solidarity with our Muslim neighbors, incoming refugees, and to defend democracy against voices of hate.

Kim wrote a short letter stating her feelings about both experiences:


Dear Friends,

I was honored to represent MCHR in Saeed’s stead yesterday at the Wright. It was a well-organized press conference that allowed me to stand with many in my own community (Dearborn Heights). Osama invited me to promote the Ferndale rally after those of us who were not primary speakers introduced ourselves and spoke a short word. Saeed, you were missed by many.

I should also mention that I represented MCHR at the ICA rally and
conversation hosted by #dearbornstrong on Saturday. Before that
meeting, I was engaged in a teacher-to-teacher talk inside the mosque
when someone took this picture without our knowing it.


Finally, thanks for all the support in Ferndale yesterday and for
bringing the MCHR banner. The hatred in response to the Oakland
Press coverage offers a chilling slice of solidarity with what
Muslims and immigrants are dealing with daily.

Here are links to the Oakland Press coverage Kim referenced, as well as coverage of the “One Nation, One Voice Against Bigotry and Hate Coalition” event.


MCHR wants to hear from you! What can we do to stand in solidarity with our Muslim and Arab neighbors, incoming refugees, and all those who face hate everyday? Reach out to us on social media, call or email us, or leave a comment below!

Join us as we walk from Detroit to Flint and demand clean, affordable water for all!



Detroit to Flint Water Justice Journey

The Detroit to Flint Water Justice Journey is about lifting up the need for clean and affordable water in Michigan. The walk will begin on Friday, July 3 in Detroit where tens of thousands of citizens have had their water shut off and where the 2005 Water Affordability Plan has been passed by the Detroit City Council but never implemented. From there, the walk will continue to Highland Park where the community has been threatened with mass water shutoffs after years of administrative mismanagement. The journey will conclude on Friday, July 10 in Flint where residents reporting serious health problems related to unsafe water from the Flint River – hair loss, autoimmune disorders, skin burns, and children with lead poisoning – share their stories. Along the way, the walk will pass through cities, rural areas, lakes, rivers, and watersheds.

The walk itself is simply the thread that weaves together a series of important public events to highlight the issues by hearing from people on the front lines – local residents personally affected by unsafe and unaffordable water, concerned citizens, people committed to water justice including public health workers, attorneys, pastors, elders and youth. The key events include: the sendoff from Detroit on July 3, a cultural event and town hall meeting in Highland Park that same afternoon, a public cross-county speak out in Pontiac on Sunday, July 5, and a rally at Flint’s Town Hall on July 10. The focus is on connecting caring communities at these public events and sharing our collective concern for clean, affordable water upheld as a human right and to affirm that water is a sacred trust that should be held as a common rather than a commodity.

Governor Snyder has been invited to Flint on July 10 to hear from citizens from the cities of Detroit, Highland Park, and Flint.

Weeks ago, members of the state legislature were invited to a public hearing on water that involved testimony from these communities. Now, concerned citizens will return to Lansing via bus after the Flint rally to call for clean and affordable water at the state capitol.


Parents and teachers: Have your children or students color this page and take a picture of them holding it to post on social media using the hashtag #Detroit2Flint! Don’t forget to Tweet it to Governor Rick Synder (@onetoughnerd) to show your family or community’s support for clean and affordable water for all in Michigan!




8:00 AM: Spiritual water ritual, Underground Railroad Monument (Hart Plaza), led by indigenous Water Women

9:30 AM: Meet-up at Central United Methodist Church, walk to Water Department, and Spirit of Detroit.

10:00 AM – 11:00 AM: Send-off at Spirit of Detroit Statue (send-off is scheduled for 11:00 AM)

2:30 PM- 3:30 PM: Cultural Celebration, Nandi’s Café, 12511 Woodward Ave, Highland Park, MI 48203

4 PM to 5:30 PM: Highland Park Town Hall Meeting and Rally, St. Luke’s A.M.E., 363 Labelle St, Highland Park, MI 48203

9:00 PM Detroit Light Brigade, 9 Mile and Woodward, Ferndale, MI


7:00 PM to 9:00 PM: Meet for a Cross County Speak out, Baldwin Center, 212 Baldwin Ave, Pontiac, MI 48342


10:00 AM to 11:00 AM: Rally for clean, affordable water, Flint City Hall, 1101 S. Saginaw Street, Flint, Michigan 48502.

11:00 AM: Bus to Lansing. Arrive in Lansing 1 PM.



Friday, July 3:

8:00 AM: Underground Railroad 1 Hart Plaza Detroit, MI 48226 (Indigenous Water Women Ceremony)

9:30 AM: Central Methodist Church 3 E Adams Ave, Detroit, MI 48226 (Deliver letter to water board)

10:00 AM: Spirit of Detroit (Rally and walk sendoff at 11 AM)

*NOTE: Cars parked at Central Methodist need to be moved by noon. Will try to assist with shuttling people.

Noon (approx.): ACLU Offices 2966 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48201 (Curt Guyette/possible film)

2:00 PM (approx.): Cathedral of the Most Blessed Sacrament 9844 Woodward Ave, Detroit, MI 48202 (IHMs)

2:30 – 3:30 PM: Nandi’s Knowledge Café (Cultural Event)12511 Woodward Ave, Highland Park, MI 48203

4:00 – 5:30: St. Luke’s AME Church (Highland Park Town Hall and Rally) 363 Labelle St, Highland Park, MI 48203

9:00 PM: Nine Mile and Woodward (Light Brigade)

Saturday, July 4:

8:00 AM: Ferndale First United Methodist Church 2331 Woodward, Ferndale, MI 48220

Sunday, July 5:

Noon: Birmingham Unitarian 38651 Woodward Ave., Bloomfield Hills, MI 48304

All are invited to join service at 10:30 AM


Monday, July 6:

8:00 AM: Baldwin Center 212 Baldwin, Pontiac MI 48342

*NOTE: Park in gated lot. Gates locked at 5 PM.

Tuesday, July 7:

8:00 AM: Grange Hall Public Carpool Lot (exit 93 off I-75), Clarkston

Wednesday, July 8:

8:00 AM: Call 313-579-9071 that morning to arrange meeting place in Holly.

Thursday, July 9:

8:00 AM: Grand Blanc UMC 515 Bush Ave., Grand Blanc, MI 48439

*NOTE: Park on outer edges of lot; senior activity scheduled that day

Friday, July 10:

9:00 AM:  Woodside UCC Church 1509 Court St., Flint MI 48503 (Walk to City Hall begins at 9:30)

11:00 AM: City Hall Rally 1101 S. Saginaw St. Flint, MI 48502




Sponsored by:

People’s Water Board Coalition

Highland Park Human Rights Coalition

Flint Coalition for Clean Water

Michigan Coalition for Human Rights

and other orgs listed on PWB website



Be a part of history; we need YOUR help. We still need people to help with driving support on July 5, 7, and 8. We also invite people to contact us ( who are interested in walking and then staying nights at our host churches along the way as part of the core walk team.

We also are in great need of people getting the word out to everyone to take part in the Detroit – Highland Park – Ferndale events on Friday, July 3, the Pontiac Town Hall on July 6, and the final rally in Flint on July 10. The final rally will be followed by a bus to Lansing- please consider joining as a day walker for an hour, a half day, or more. Healthy snacks are always welcome.  

The Future of Energy- Watch the movie, connect with resources

The Future of Energy is a positive film about the renewable energy revolution and a story about the countless people and communities building jobs, justice, and resilience.


Theo-Badashi_Bio_Photo_CU.jpgListen to MCHR’s interview with Theo Badashi, host and co-writer of the film “The Future of Energy”, touching on Detroit’s role in the future of community-based renewable energy solutions:


Check out the film, below, and afterwards check out these resources to learn how to help affect change in your community and shift towards a healthier, saner, and more inclusive energy future with things like community choice aggregation (CCA) and zero net energy (ZNE) systems. MCHR would like to thank Theo Badashi and the rest of the cast and crew of “The Future of Energy” for coming to Detroit with this inspiring film and having a real conversation about energy and democratic power on Earth Day 2015!


MCHR Freedom Tour 2016 Official Poster Contest Rules

Michigan Coalition for Human Rights
2016 Freedom Tour Poster Contest


Official Rules


1. Basic Information


The contest is open to all Michigan residents aged 15-25.

No shared work or entries are allowed.


Entry Limit

One poster per student.


Entry Deadline

Sunday, March 20, 2016 is the submission deadline.


Address for Poster Submission

Entries must be submitted to:

MCHR Freedom Tour Poster Contest, 117 West 4th Street,

Suite 200, Royal Oak, Mich. 48067

Digital submissions are also acceptable and should be emailed to “” with the subject line “Submission for MCHR poster contest”.

Back of Poster Must Include the Following Information (if  submitting a digital file, this information should be included in the submission email):

-Student Name

-Student Age

-Student Address (home and e-mail)

-Student Phone Number and/or E-mail Address

-Student School



A $1,000 first prize and a $500 second prize will be presented for the selected poster designs. The winners will be announced in early-mid April 2016 (date TBA).

2. Poster Requirements


Posters must have a theme or message representing civil rights and/or the civil rights movement, the history, places and monuments of the civil rights movement and/or the meaning and importance of the 2016 Freedom Tour. (See “What is the 2016 Freedom Tour?”) All subject matter must be in good taste.


There is no word limit, but submitted posters must include, at minimum, the following copy/words:

– “2016 Freedom Tour”

– “June 19-29, 2016”

– “Civil Rights”

– “Michigan Coalition for Human Rights”

A credit line on front of poster with student’s name will be allowed.



Poster must measure approximately 18”x 24.”

Poster presentations can be horizontal or vertical.

Poster must be mounted on matte board. (or foam core, etc.)

Digital submissions must also conform to these same size specifications.



Any mixed media suitable for print reproduction as a poster is allowed, including

computer-generated graphics.

All artwork must be camera-ready.

Posters must be two-dimensional.

All posters must be original art.

Digital submissions must be print-ready (proper resolution) and must also follow all of the above requirements.


3. Rights

All entries become the property of the Michigan Coalition for Human Rights. Except as used by the Michigan Coalition for Human Rights, all artists, including contest winners, will retain the rights to their work. Entry in the contest constitutes full permission to publish the name and photo of the winner and reproduce and sell copies of the poster without further compensation. The determination of eligibility of entries and any interpretation of these rules is at the sole discretion of the Michigan Coalition for Human Rights and shall be final and binding upon all entrants.

By participating, the entrant agrees to abide by and be bound by these rules.

For additional information on poster contest, send e-mail to

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Additional Information on 2016 Freedom Tour and U.S. Civil Rights Movement

What is the 2016 Freedom Tour?

The 2016 Freedom Tour is a ten-day educational trip (June 19-29, 2016) for Michigan high school students to learn and experience the history of the U.S. civil rights movement.  It will also enable students to become knowledgeable and deeply engaged with the civil rights movement and its rich history – and what it means for them, their peers, and their communities today.

The bus tour will take students from Michigan to the states where much of the country’s civil rights history was made, including Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Tennessee.

The 2016 Freedom Tour will visit multiple cities and sites, including:

*The King Center & Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia.

*Rosa Parks Center, Southern Poverty Law Center & Viola Liuzzo Memorial in Montgomery and Lowndes County, Alabama.

*Edmund Pettus Bridge & National Voting Rights Museum & Institute in Selma, Alabama.

*Tougaloo College & Medgar Evers House & Museum in Tougaloo and Jackson, Mississippi.

*National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, Tennessee.

*Alex Haley Museum and Interpretive Center in Henning, Tennessee.


Media Coverage of 2013 Freedom Tour

*“Trip to Selma Connected Local Students to Civil Rights” from Detroit Free Press.

*“Michigan Youths Follow Freedom Riders’ Civil Rights Journey” from Toledo Blade.

*“Local Attorney Leads Local Teens on Freedom Tour of South” from Legal News.


Additional Information on U.S. Civil Rights Movement

*American Civil Rights Movement

*“The Abolitionists” online video from PBS’ American Experience

*“Freedom Summer” online video from PBS’ American Experience

*Civil Rights Movement at Channel

*Honoring Detroit’s Revolutionary Civil Rights Fighter from Detroit Free Press

Downloadable resources:


Activist Delegation Provides MCHR Board Members Global Perspective, Moving Accounts of Human Rights Challenges in Middle East and Africa

Detroit, Mich. —

On January 23, 2015, MCHR board members met with a U.S. State Department-sponsored International Visitor Leadership Program delegation from the Middle East and North Africa exploring Human and Civil Rights Advocacy and Awareness.

The delegation consisted of 16 individuals from Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Mauritania, Palestinian Territories, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. They met with board members at the International Institute in Detroit. Prior to their visit here, the delegation had made stops in Alabama and Washington D.C. and will finish their U.S. tour in Arizona.

ivsp delegation
The State Department had specific objectives for the delegation throughout its U.S. tour and meeting with the MCHR Board, including:

*Examining the historical context of human rights advocacy in the U.S.

*Illustrating the influence of human and civil rights activists on policy at national, state and local levels.

*Exploring the role and structure of associations, NGOs and religious groups in advancing civil rights and equal opportunity.

*Analyzing a variety of human rights concerns related to critical issues, including disability rights, freedom of press/religion/speech, access to education and due process.

The delegation consisted of 12 men and 4 women, most of them appearing to be in their 30s and early 40s, visiting the U.S. for the first time. The group included human rights attorneys, NGO executives, government employees, labor and refugee experts and advocates for women, children and the impoverished. All experienced, dedicated and enthusiastic activists working in a region characterized by some of most extreme and catastrophic human rights violations imaginable.

Through simultaneous translation, MCHR board members Cary McGehee, Abayomi Azikiwe, Kim Redigan, Eric Hood, Dorothy Aldridge, Saeed Khan, Marge Sears and Lila Cabell of the People’s Water Board addressed the delegation providing a brief overview of MCHR. This included: Our role in the community, history of MCHR, current issues/activities (cited participation/support for the People’s Water Board), regular events (film series, lectures, annual dinner), special events (Freedom Tours), and our use of publicity, the Internet and social media to promote human rights and MCHR. The delegates listened closely to each speaker and most took notes.

Then, through the interpreter, we listened for nearly two hours as individual members of the visiting delegation provided first-hand accounts of their work and challenges. They spoke to a number of serious (some shocking) human rights violations and situations in their regions, including:

*An Egyptian attorney pointed-out that Arab Spring has brought turmoil with its promise and that regular Egyptian citizens are not being represented in the government, which has become more oppressive (no matter who is in power). He deals with many freedom of the press/free speech issues and says the government has been arresting and illegally detaining more journalists and known activists. He said that this trip to the U.S. may very likely result in his own arrest upon returning to Egypt.

*A human rights activist and law professor from Mauritania and a teacher from Yemen said their countries still deal with a legacy of slavery and indentured servitude, long entrenched in their cultures. In their two countries, they said, there are over 3 million black people in slavery.  For far too many in the West, these accounts of slavery in the year 2015 are simply incredulous.

*An attorney with the Palestinian Bar Association’s legal clinic said she and others have filed over 100 lawsuits against the Israeli government for the wrongful deaths and injuries of Palestinians and the destruction of homes and property during Israel’s latest military action. She said the cases must be brought in Israeli courts, where it is not only almost impossible to prevail, but equally difficult to actually be cleared to enter Israel and file a lawsuit. To date, three Palestinian plaintiffs have prevailed.

*Another attorney from Palestine talked about other possible actions, including the need to put international pressure on the Israeli government to change its Palestinian policies. This led to a discussion on the various BDS initiatives being undertaken by U.S. and European groups. She said that U.S. support of this type is much needed and

*An attorney from Jordan expressed deep concern about the negative impact of terrorist actions on Islam and all Muslims. He says Islamaphobia has worsened as religious terrorist violence continues and that politics has hijacked Islam.

*A number of delegates also described serious water availability and water rights issues in their countries. Problems include both water scarcity and competing political and corporate interests vying for control of the resource, trumping the basic water rights of the people. Privatization interests and plans complicate the situation in the Middle East and North Africa, as well.

As the delegation’s members related their efforts to address the many extreme human
rights violations in their region, each also expressed thanks and gratitude to MCHR for meeting with them and listening to their stories. Each delegation member who spoke also said that any kind of help or counsel would be much appreciated.

The human rights issues that these activists face are on a vast scale — and often
appear to be overwhelming, nearly hopeless situations. But these people will go back
home continue their efforts.

MCHR thanks the delegation for sharing their stories with us. Their visit and narrative
clearly remind us – again — that the human rights struggle is universal and ongoing.
As we consider the significance of their visit, the question for us should be: What can
MCHR do to assist and support these extraordinary activists?

Ground the Drones

Ground the Drones

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Reaper Drones, like those piloted by remote control nearby in Battle Creek, have killed thousands of civilians, terrorized entire populations, and increased the atmosphere of fear and hatred in the Middle East.

It is time for us to tell our leaders– and our neighbors– that it is time to Ground the Drones and seek more productive, nonviolent alternatives.


Nonviolent Demonstration Battle Creek

Air National Guard Base 3367 W. Dickman Rd.

A peaceful gathering at the gates of the base where drones are remotely piloted. We will ask our friends and neighbors at the base to end their participation in drone warfare and we will call for an end to war and for the development of peaceful alternatives.


Lend Your Voice,
Plan the Movement!
1st United Methodist Church 111 E. Michigan in Battle Creek

Join the conversation about how to continue speaking out against drone warfare. We will discuss strategies and next steps for reaching out to our leaders and to the public, in the name of finding peaceful alternatives to drones. Light Supper will be provided.

(From the base, drive 3 miles east on Dickman Rd. Turn Left on Capital SW. East Michigan will be the 3rd right.)

For more info, call (269) 492.1206. or email

To learn more about drones go to


URGENT: Call for volunteers to assist with phone surveys of Detroit communities affected by water shut-offs


Dear friends of Detroit,

A call has come to us from We The People Of Detroit for help in
researching the repercussions to Detroit families of the water
cut-offs. Volunteers will need to make phone calls and conduct surveys
from their own home phones in the next month; information and analysis
of these surveys will be forwarded to the UN special delegation and
used in the lawsuit aimed at stopping the shut offs.

A special app will be forwarded to all volunteers that will easily
connect them to an online, user friendly questionnaire / survey.

Please respond to Monica Patrick Lewis at We the People
( and both an app and instructions will be forwarded
to you.

Show Solidarity with ASOTRECOL


The GM-Colombia 8 autoworkers announced on February 1st that they are resuming their water-only hunger strike, with their lips sewn shut, on Tues., Feb. 11th. That’s the date in 1937 when militant UAW workers in Flint ended a historic 44-day sit-down strike, after GM agreed to recognize the UAW as the workers’ exclusive bargaining agent.

Their first fast in August 2012 ended after 22 days when GM agreed to a mediation with the workers’ association, ASOTRECOL – which ended without a settlement. Citing the workers’ rejection of their paltry “final offer,” GM has since refused the workers’ demand to go back to the table.

Out of the 68 members who formed ASOTRECOL in 2011, eight are holding steadfast and remain in
the fight today. Employed an average of 8 years, they suffered debilitating injuries working 12-14
hours/day on an antiquated assembly line. 4-6 years ago GM devised illegal ways to get rid of them.

With no union to turn to, and stonewalled by the Colombian legal system, the workers in August 2011 set up a tent encampment in front of the US Embassy in Bogota – where they’ve been ever since – (as of Feb. 1st) 914 days.


The working conditions in their factory were eerily similar to those in Flint in the 1930s. These
include: hazardous and unhealthy work conditions, job insecurity, extreme speedup, firings, anti-union policies including espionage and intimidation, and displacement of workers at an extremely early age – all with the backdrop of no government oversight and weak or no unions. This is what gave rise to the struggle by the GM workers 80 years ago in Flint – and today in Colombia.

After these conditions were exposed by ASOTRECOL, GM made safety improvements, corrected
some management practices and changed management personnel at the Colmotores plant. GM
must now end its war of attrition against the GM-Colombia 8, and make them whole!

Let’s Demonstrate Our Solidarity on the UAW’s Anniversary



For more info please see, or contact Kevin Young at (607) 857-5677

Oppose Citizens United

Who would you rather have wielding the power in our elections: (A) the people or (B) outside special interests and private corporations?

No, this isn’t a trick question. And yes, the correct answer is (A).

Yet since 2010, when the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Citizens United, outside special interests and corporations have been able to pour money, with virtually no oversight, into federal elections all across the country.

Which means, if you chose (A), then we’ve got some work to do: Add your voice to mine — tell Congress that it’s time to end Citizens United, now.

Expose the Trans-Pacific Partnership and say NO to fast-track authority

The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) has been called “NAFTA on steroids” – and for good reason.

Negotiated behind closed doors by the governments of a dozen countries (including ours) colluding with corporate interests, this secret “trade” deal would eviscerate broad swaths of regulations that protect consumers, workers, the environment and the soundness of our financial system. And it would set up a legal regime where corporate profits trump the policy priorities of sovereign governments.

The first stage in the plan to pass the TPP is a big push for Congress to pass fast-track trade authority, which would short-circuit the typical legislative process when trade deals like the TPP come up for a vote.

Tell Congress: Say NO to fast-track trade authority.