Category Archives: Section

Countering Disinformationhttp://publici.ucimc.org/wp-admin/edit.php to Build a Just Society

We have heard a lot about disinformation during this past year, but learning more about how information is manipulated, distorted and deployed to shape social debates can help you recognize when you are being targeted in a disinformation campaign. It … Continue reading

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“It’s Scary Having a Fifteen-Year-Old Son”: Community Voices on Gun Violence in C-U

In the midst of the global pandemic, Champaign-Urbana has its own local epidemic: gun violence. As of July 20, police had received 95 reports in 2020 of shooting incidents in Champaign alone. This is more than double the total for … Continue reading

Posted in African Americans, African Americans, Gun violence, incarceration, Poetry, Violence, Voices of Color | Comments Off on “It’s Scary Having a Fifteen-Year-Old Son”: Community Voices on Gun Violence in C-U

Polish Women Take to the Streets

Following an October 22 Polish Supreme Court decision cutting off the main route to legal abortion in the country, Polish women, and many supportive men and children, took to the streets in the biggest mass mobilization in Poland in 40 … Continue reading

Posted in abortion rights, Feminism, International, International, Poland, Women | Comments Off on Polish Women Take to the Streets

Urbana Police Chief Finally Admits Misconduct in Aleyah Lewis Arrest

  It has been more than seven months since the violent arrest of Urbana resident Aleyah Lewis. Tens of thousands of people have watched the videos of Urbana Police Officers throwing Lewis to the ground, pinning her, punching her in the … Continue reading

Posted in Justice, Police, police accountability, Police brutality, Policing | Comments Off on Urbana Police Chief Finally Admits Misconduct in Aleyah Lewis Arrest

“The Big Scary ‘S’ Word” is Coming for your Children

  Did you know that Abraham Lincoln and Karl Marx had a correspondence; that Helen Keller was a socialist, as was Francis Bellamy, who authored the Pledge of Allegiance; that North Dakota practices public banking; and that in the 1840s … Continue reading

Posted in Arts, film, socialism | Comments Off on “The Big Scary ‘S’ Word” is Coming for your Children

What I Learned While being the Poet Laureate for the City of Urbana . . .

I learned that the people of Urbana truly appreciated the emphasis on poetry in their public lives.  They felt it improved their town in a tangible way. I learned that many poets live in this community who don’t always interact … Continue reading

Posted in Arts, Local Arts, Poetry | Comments Off on What I Learned While being the Poet Laureate for the City of Urbana . . .

The UCIMC Disinformation Defense Campaign

IMC working groups, projects, and partners are working to fight the tide of disinformation. We have just received a grant and extensive educational materials from MediaJustice to do this work. We will focus on racialized disinformation: disinformation campaigns that specifically … Continue reading

Posted in Media, Racism | Comments Off on The UCIMC Disinformation Defense Campaign

Indymedia at 20

  It was twenty years ago, September 24, 2000, when a dozen people crammed into my apartment on Carle Park. We began dreaming about the Independent Media Center that now graces the heart of Urbana, nurturing new friendships, growing new … Continue reading

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The University and its Workers during the Pandemic

The coronavirus pandemic has affected universities all over the country and the world. Different institutions have chosen different approaches, from keeping all courses online and discouraging students from returning (Smith College, Harvard University, etc.) to a full opening of residential … Continue reading

Posted in COVID pandemic, health, Labor, Labor/Economics, University of Illinois, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign | Comments Off on The University and its Workers during the Pandemic

COVID-19: Local Responses and Lessons for the Future

The Public i asked Professor Weissman, in light of his involvement with helping doctors with statistics, for his thoughts on the local response to COVID-19 and any lessons learned from it for the future. First, I think it’s more important … Continue reading

Posted in COVID-19, pandemic, Public Health, University of Illinois, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign | Comments Off on COVID-19: Local Responses and Lessons for the Future

Governor Pritzker has the Power to Halt All Utility Shutoffs by Signing an Executive Order

Robin Brown’s utilities in Champaign were shut off by Ameren Illinois on September 18, 2020, in the midst of our historical COVID-19 pandemic. When asked about how utility shutoffs affected her, Brown said “I’ve had to give away and separate … Continue reading

Posted in Corporations, COVID pandemic, Economy, IL, Justice, Labor/Economics, State Government | Comments Off on Governor Pritzker has the Power to Halt All Utility Shutoffs by Signing an Executive Order

What Educational Values and Beliefs Underpin a Decision to have Armed School Resource Officers?

This article was previously published in Smile Politely,  On December 17, 2019, the Urbana Board of Education (BOE) signed an intergovernmental agreement to approve funding of two full-time armed police officers (called School Resource Officers, or SROs)—one at the middle … Continue reading

Posted in African American, Education, Education, Police, Policing, Urbana, Voices of Color | Comments Off on What Educational Values and Beliefs Underpin a Decision to have Armed School Resource Officers?

The Decline of African Languages at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

The University of Illinois used to be one of the best universities for learning African languages. Emeritus professor of Linguistics Eyamba Bokamba would always say, “here in Illinois we offer African languages from A to Z, Arabic to Zulu.” Unfortunately, … Continue reading

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Disruptive Shift Changes for UIUC Custodial Staff

Jenni Walkup is a public anthropology MA student at American University who lives in Champaign. She works in education and writes about movements and social change. She’s very good at Bananagrams. In August, 2020, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the University of … Continue reading

Posted in COVID-19, labor, Labor/Economics, University of Illinois, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign | Comments Off on Disruptive Shift Changes for UIUC Custodial Staff

SEIU Statement Regarding the Changes in the Building Services Department at UIUC

The University decided in mid-spring that it would reopen for the 2020 fall semester, a decision that would require drastic, “emergency” changes in our department and to the working conditions of SEIU members. Management didn’t notify union leadership until July … Continue reading

Posted in COVID-19, labor, Labor/Economics, University of Illinois, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign | Comments Off on SEIU Statement Regarding the Changes in the Building Services Department at UIUC

Police Unions: Solidarity and Accountability

The Police and Solidarity There are two major differences between police officers and other workers in both the private and public sector. The first is a truncated sense of solidarity, the second a lack of accountability. Unionized workers in both … Continue reading

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Chalk It Up to Protecting Property Over People

In July Michael Long, owner of the Rogue Barber Co. in downtown Champaign, implemented a discriminatory “membership only” policy. The issue came to public attention on July 23, when a female Champaign resident shared screenshots on social media of a … Continue reading

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How Are Violent Police Held Accountable in Champaign County?

On April 10, Urbana Police officers threw an African American woman, Aleyah Lewis, to the ground and punched her while she was down. She had protested the arrest of a friend. Caught on video, this led many people in the … Continue reading

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A Student’s Perspective on COVID-19

On January 21, 2020, the first case of COVID-19 within the US was confirmed. During the first few days of the University of Illinois spring break, it was announced that all courses would transition to online-only learning by March 23, … Continue reading

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Posted in COVID-19, Section, Students, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Voices | Comments Off on A Student’s Perspective on COVID-19

Is the Addition of a Larger Police Presence to Urbana Schools a Human Rights Violation?

On February 4, 2019, I was in class at Urbana High School when a student came in and said there were students fighting in the hall and a teacher had been knocked out. My teacher quickly locked the door and … Continue reading

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Posted in Education, Education, Police, Section, Students, Voices | Comments Off on Is the Addition of a Larger Police Presence to Urbana Schools a Human Rights Violation?