05-27-2020  6:05 pm   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Huge Washington Unemployment Fraud Warning to Other States

Officials hint that hundreds of millions of dollars have been paid out in fake unemployment claims.

Spike in Coronavirus Cases in Oregon Traced to Gatherings

Most of Deschutes County’s new cases can be traced to social gatherings with extended family, like barbecues and celebrations.

Oregon Supreme Court Gives Judge Deadline on Virus Ruling

Baker County Circuit Judge Matthew Shirtcliff ruled Gov. Brown's stay-at-home orders are invalid but Supreme Court want explanation

Three-Car Derailment in North Portland Signals Ongoing Safety Concerns

A train derailment in North Portland Tuesday morning resulted in no injuries, but damaged a Lombard Street overpass. It also served as a reminder of the safety hazards of living alongside railways.

NEWS BRIEFS

Oregon Health Authority Investigating COVID-19 Increase at Unnamed Business

Oregon reports 71 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases today, no new deaths ...

Some Columbia River Gorge Trails, Parks Reopen Today

Crowded sites including most waterfall viewing areas, campgrounds, and visitor’s centers will stay closed because of the coronavirus...

Over 60 Percent of U.S. Households Have Responded to 2020 Census

Washington is one of the 6 states with the highest self-response rates and both Seattle and Portland are one of the top 8 cities with...

Federal Court Rules Florida Law That Undermined Voting Rights Restoration Is Unconstitutional

The law required people with past convictions to pay all outstanding legal fees, costs, fines, and restitution before regaining their...

Washington issues new guidelines for religious services

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Washington Gov. Jay Inslee announced Wednesday that churches, mosques and synagogues can resume in-person services, with those in counties in the second stage of the state’s COVID-19 reopening plan allowed to have smaller in-building services and the remainder...

Virus outbreak at unnamed business could disrupt reopening

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Multnomah County said Wednesday that it hopes to begin reopening in about two weeks, but a mysterious coronavirus outbreak could hinder those plans.The Oregon Health Authority said Wednesday afternoon that it is working with county health authorities to investigate...

Kansas, Missouri renew Border War with 4-game football set

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas and Missouri are resuming their bitter Border War in football after the former Big 12 rivals agreed to a four-game series in which each school will play two home games beginning in September 2025.The fourth-longest rivalry in college football dates to 1891, but...

OPINION

Ballot Measure 26-210 is Needed Now

Though this measure was referred to the ballot by Metro, it was written by the HereTogether coalition ...

The Skanner News May Primary 2020 Endorsements

Read The Skanner News' midterm election endorsements for Oregon, Multnomah County, Portland, and ballot measures ...

A New Earth Day

Happy Earth Day. If we actually mean it, we will elect representatives who will force the military to clean up their pollution ...

Covid-19 Financial Warning: Consumers and Banks Should Stay Away From Payday Loans

When living costs exceed available financial resources, tough times lead to tough decisions ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Mayor: Officer who put knee on man's neck should be charged

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The mayor of Minneapolis called Wednesday for criminal charges against the white police officer seen on video kneeling against the neck of a handcuffed black man who complained that he could not breathe and died in police custody.Based on the video, Mayor Jacob Frey said...

False news swirls around Minneapolis officer in fatal arrest

A Minneapolis police officer videotaped on Monday holding a black man to the ground with his knee during an arrest has become the target of false claims on social media that attempt to tie him to political agendas and racist ideologies.Twitter and Facebook posts with hundreds of thousands of views...

US Congress approves China sanctions over ethnic crackdown

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congress voted Wednesday to toughen the U.S. response to a brutal Chinese crackdown on ethnic minorities, adding another factor to the increasingly stormy relationship between the two countries.The House passed a bipartisan bill that would impose sanctions on Chinese...

ENTERTAINMENT

Larry Kramer used voice, pen to raise consciousness on AIDS

NEW YORK (AP) — Time never softened the urgency of Larry Kramer’s demands.Theatergoers leaving a celebrated revival of Kramer’s “The Normal Heart” in 2011 were greeted by the playwright himself, deep in his 70s by then, handing out leaflets outside the Broadway...

Summertime, and the living is uneasy for Jason Isbell

NEW YORK (AP) — Jason Isbell had big plans for this summer, between a new album specifically designed to introduce his music to a wider audience and a schedule that had him onstage most nights from May to September.Like millions of others, many of Isbell's dreams are on hold because of the...

Review: 'The Vast of Night' is a cunning lo-fi sci-fi noir

“The Vast of Night,” a micro-budget noir set in 1950s New Mexico, crackles with B-movie electricity. The film is one of those little miracles: a directorial debut, made for nothing, that establishes a young filmmaker of self-evident command. With atmosphere and cunning, director...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Keselowski looks to heat up market with 2nd Charlotte win

CONCORD, N.C. (AP) — The caution that sent the Coca-Cola 600 to overtime both continued Chase Elliott's bad...

AP PHOTOS: Funerals become lonely affairs amid pandemic

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — Mohammad Altaf, the generous spirit. Eudiana Smith, the trailblazer. Servius...

'Bummed out': SpaceX launch scrubbed because of bad weather

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — The launch of a SpaceX rocket ship with two NASA astronauts on a history-making...

5 killed in fire at Bangladesh coronavirus treatment tent

DHAKA,Bangladesh (AP) — Fire swept through a through a unit of a hospital in an upscale area of the...

French lawmakers endorse the country's virus tracing app

PARIS (AP) — France's lower house of parliament endorsed Wednesday a contact-tracing app designed to...

UK unveils test and trace plan; Johnson refuses aide inquiry

LONDON (AP) — After two months of lockdown and more than 37,000 coronavirus deaths, Britain on Wednesday...

McMenamins
Lisa Loving of The Skanner News

An alleged campaign of racial harassment against a preteen Gladstone middle school student has touched off a federal Civil Rights Act lawsuit against the school district.
The unidentified girl of African and Haitian descent alleges her white schoolmates spent all of last school year calling her racial epithets, pushing her around physically, and insulting her based on the color of her skin.
The girl's lawyer, Jill Odell, says the harassment continued despite multiple attempts by the girl and her parents to make teachers and administrators intervene.
"My client, a young African American girl, was -- it's hard to describe what she was exposed to last year in middle school – from the first day of school to the last day of school," Odell told The Skanner News.
"Students taunted her, called her the n-word, pushed her into lockers, spit into her food, told her she put mayonnaise in her hair, told her that she smelled bad because she was Black – the things you'd think students don't do anymore that occurred to my client all throughout the school year."
The girl, now 13, has transferred to a different school district for this school year.
Gladstone School Superintendent Bob Stewart did not return calls for comment Tuesday.
The suit charges that the district and a handful of teachers at Walter L. Kraxberger Middle School violated civil rights laws prohibiting discrimination by a public school which receives federal funding.
"She repeatedly went to the principal and the teachers and asked for help and they didn't do anything about it," Odell said.
State laws and regulations require schools to put processes in place to try to prevent discrimination in the schools, she said, but "they did not follow those guidelines at all."
When the girl's mother went to the district to complain and asked for a complaint form, staff didn't even have a complaint form for her to fill out, Odell said.
"That's just basic state law, they didn't even comply at that level," she said. "They gave her a scrap piece of paper and told her she could write on the back of it."
According to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, public schools that receive financial assistance from the federal government cannot discriminate based on race, sex and other factors.
"Personally, I grew up in the Deep South in a very segregated town, and the facts of this case even shock me," Odell said. It sounds like something that would have happened in the 60s, in the Deep South.
"You don't think this happens anymore."
District statistics show Kraxberger Middle School's student body is 79 percent White, and one percent African American – lower than the statewide demographic that shows three percent of middle school students are Black.
Kraxberger students post above-average test scores, and the school includes 38 percent free or reduced-cost lunch students.
"Because there was no reaction from teachers, little if any discipline imposed on the students, the students were emboldened to continue the discrimination," Odell said.
"I think the message, unfortunately, is that racism is well and alive in our community. And we all need to do our part in getting rid of racism."

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