Stories

First-grades focus on reading in their Chrysler Elementary School classroom in Detroit.
At this high-achieving Detroit elementary school, parents and teachers fear a state reading mandate will still leave kids behind
By Damon Mitchell On a Friday afternoon earlier this month, Gwendolyn Harris recited vowel sounds from her brightly decorated classroom overlooking a grassy expanse of Detroit’s Lafayette Plaisance Park. First-graders listened as Harris directed them to observe her tongue and lip movements for each sound, then wrote the matching letters on their worksheets. With each
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Detroit artist Sydney G. James in her studio.
Painter Sydney G. James is making her mark on Detroit’s art scene — and celebrating the black women that inspire
If you haven’t memorized the name Sydney G. James, it’s time to take notes. James, a native Detroiter and College for Creative Studies graduate, returned to the city from Los Angeles in 2011 and immediately started making her mark on the local art scene. You’ve probably seen her paintings, larger than life, adorning buildings in
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A program to cut down back taxes for Detroiters may be too little, too late
At first glance, the Pay as You Stay program — which would dramatically cut down on back taxes for low-income homeowners in Detroit and attempt to stave off tax foreclosure — seems like a great idea.  The initiative was announced by Mayor Mike Duggan, Wayne County Executive Warren Evans and County Treasurer Eric Sabree last week. It will need state
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Dexter Grinds coffee shop interior
When an out-of-state owner nearly closed this Detroit coffee shop, neighbors united to save it
Dexter Grinds owner Pastor Clete Bontrager wants the coffee house to be a community hub -- and a catalyst to revitalize the formerly bustling Dexter Avenue commercial corridor.
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Illustration of boy using computer with 404 screen. One in four Detroiters doesn't have internet at home.
How Joshua Edmonds plans to ‘Connect 313’ and get almost all Detroiters online
One in four Detroit households don't have any internet access. In just five years, the city’s new digital inclusion director wants to flip that.
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7 Detroit Changemakers You Can’t Miss at the 2019 Net Impact Global Conference
#ad from our content partner, the Net Impact Conference The largest global convening of young social impact leaders is coming to Detroit in just three weeks! Hear from world-class leaders discussing the climate crisis, gun violence, sustainable fashion, corporate social responsibility and much more. Explore new career opportunities and get inspired to take the next
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Self Care Project flyer
The Self Care Project will give Detroit activists $25,000 to take care of themselves
Kerry Ann Rockquemore started the Self Care Project to give out $500 each to 50 “activists, organizers and change makers” who live in Detroit, Hamtramck or Highland Park this month.
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Detroit resident Geraldine Hasan is pictured at a neighborhood meeting where she shared concerns about the cannabis industry and what she sees as lax regulations.
Detroiters demand more equity — and answers — from Michigan’s budding cannabis industry
By Jess Jackson, Detour Emerging Voices Fellow As Michigan prepares for the emerging recreational cannabis industry and attempts to level the field for minority business owners, Detroit’s budding “cannapreneurs” are eager to take part — but still face mistrust from residents who’ve seen the corrosive effects of drug enforcement in communities of color.  Those tensions
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RollerCade skating rink in Southwest Detroit is a family-owned business that's been open for three generations.
RollerCade, a black-owned skating rink in Detroit, has survived for generations with ‘neighborhood-first mindset’
To neighbors and Detroiters in the know, RollerCade isn’t just a great place to skate. It’s a legendary community hub.
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east warren tool libarary
Need to do home repair on the cheap? At this new Detroit library, you can borrow tools
The E. Warren Tool Library opened on Detroit's east side in July 2019, letting residents borrow tools and supplies to repair their homes and beautify their blocks for little cost.
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Chef Maxcel Hardy gets real about what Detroit’s restaurant industry needs right now
We spoke to Chef Maxcel Hardy a few days after a massive hurricane leveled the Bahamas, where much of Hardy’s extended family still lives. Hardy said that his family’s homes were all pretty much destroyed in Hurricane Dorian, which has left more than 70,000 Bahamians homeless. Click here for more information on how to donate
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Detroit’s libraries are no longer charging late fees
A little good news for the frequent book borrowers out there: the Detroit Public Library is no longer charging late fees when patrons keep books (and other media) past their due dates. Though DPL’s announcement came without warning, it follows a nationwide shift away from late fees, with policies implemented by dozens of other libraries since the early
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