The Bankruptcy of Detroit
As teachers narrowly ratify concessions deal
By J. Cooper, 2 August 2017
Detroit public schools will lose millions of dollars due to continuing handouts to the city’s billionaire developers.
By Kathleen Martin, 1 August 2017
Data from the Henry Ford Global Health Initiative found that patients are 1.55 times more likely to get a water-borne illness if they live on a block where a water shutoff occurs.
26 July 2017
The SEP and the IYSSE are holding public meetings Thursday in Detroit and Flint, Michigan to review the experience of the Grenfell fire tragedy in London and its broader implications for the working class.
By Phyllis Steele, 3 July 2017
The Detroit Federation of Teachers is attempting to impose yet another round of concessions on teachers who have suffered years of givebacks, layoffs and eroding school conditions.
By Tim Rivers, 29 June 2017
An apparent electrical fire took the lives of an adult and two small children in a working-class neighborhood of Detroit Tuesday.
By Debra Watson, 24 June 2017
Local Democratic administrations have been using what amounts to a scam to fleece homeowners in the Detroit metropolitan area in order to increase tax revenues.
While one in six homes have no running water
By Kathleen Martin, 6 June 2017
The Quicken Loans CEO is raking in cash from the city and the state to fund his real estate development enterprises downtown, two and a half years after Detroit's bankruptcy.
“This is a new world we’re seeing with Betsy DeVos”
By Debra Watson, 5 June 2017
Teachers at the Southfield, Michigan school learned only last week that Renaissance, which calls itself a school turn-around specialist, has run out of money.
By James Brewer, 1 June 2017
Some 400 households had their water service disconnected in the one-week period following the city’s resumption of water shutoffs earlier this spring.
One third of American households cannot afford water bills
By Kathleen Martin, 29 May 2017
Recent reports show major sustainability issues, with rising costs of water and affordability for millions of US households.
By Phyllis Steele, 22 May 2017
So egregious were the school board’s demands that the Detroit Federation of Teachers executive board could not bring it back to rank-and-file educators.
By Marissa Ross, 20 May 2017
The announcement of unprecedented mass closures sparked outrage among students, parents and educators across the state.
By Kathleen Martin, 15 May 2017
The new biosolids waste facility has violated one-hour EPA sulfur dioxide emission standards over 2,500 times in the last year.
By Jerry White, 15 March 2017
At its peak last week, more than a million homes, schools and businesses in the metropolitan Detroit area and outstate areas had no electricity.
By Kathleen Martin, 13 March 2017
Tens of thousand of residents remain in the dark and without heat in below freezing temperatures following high winds last week that crippled the aging electrical grid in the Detroit area.
By Shannon Jones, 11 March 2017
Michigan residents once again had their lives disrupted by a fairly routine weather event, testifying again to the longstanding neglect of US infrastructure.
By Kathleen Martin, 2 March 2017
The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department issued a boil water advisory Tuesday due to concerns over bacterial contamination affecting a large section of the city.
By Shannon Jones, 15 February 2017
Behind the official paeans to the late billionaire Mike Ilitch lies the reality of a city devastated by the ruthless workings of capitalist “free enterprise.”
“There are a lot of struggling people in the Detroit Metro area”
By Shannon Jones, 25 November 2016
As we enter the holiday season, residents of Detroit and surrounding suburbs face continued high levels of unemployment, food insecurity and homelessness.
By Debra Watson, 23 November 2016
Following the rejection of a lawsuit on a moratorium, thousands of Wayne County, Michigan residents may soon face eviction as officials seize properties for back taxes.
By Nancy Hanover, 19 September 2016
Educators greeted the agreement with anger and skepticism in the face of the concerted attempts by the union to derail their struggles over the course of the last year.
By James Brewer, 14 September 2016
The ruling upholding a law used to force Detroit into bankruptcy and switch Flint to a toxic water source was based on the assertion that the population does not have a right to vote.
By Nancy Hanover, 12 September 2016
The American Federation of Teachers is demanding that educators acquiesce to low pay, overcrowded classrooms, unsafe buildings and more school closures.
By Marissa Ross, 8 September 2016
Detroit teachers received contract “highlights” at a mass meeting called by the Detroit Federation of Teachers and will begin voting next week.
After the destruction of the Detroit Public Schools
By Nancy Hanover, 6 September 2016
The reorganization of DPS has established the precedent that debt-ridden schools can be dissolved, reorganized and/or replaced with private entities.
By Marissa Ross and Nancy Hanover, 25 August 2016
In the wake of the dissolution of the DPS and the launching of the Detroit Public Schools Community District, the court case against teacher protests has been wrapped up.
By a WSWS reporting team, 18 August 2016
WSWS reporters uncovered landlord neglect at a government-subsidized retirement building in Southwest Detroit.
By Debra Watson and Catherine Long, 8 August 2016
An acute lack of affordable housing along with deplorable conditions in existing housing stock has left tens of thousands without a safe and healthy place to live out their retirement.
By James Brewer, 30 July 2016
These six indictments bring the number of criminal indictments to nine.
Judge Rhodes, Democrats try to pacify Detroit teachers
By Nancy Hanover, 27 June 2016
Hundreds of teachers and parents turned out for a town hall informational meeting called by local Democrats to explain the legislative deal which will terminate the Detroit Public Schools.
“Public education is not a business, it is a right”
By a WSWS reporting team, 27 June 2016
Teachers and parents spoke to the WSWS at a public town hall meeting held in the wake of the legislative deal to dissolve the 174-year-old Detroit Public Schools.
27 June 2016
Michigan public school teachers express their support for teachers in Oaxaca and throughout Mexico in the face of last week’s government massacre.
By Nancy Hanover, 18 June 2016
The Michigan legislature uses debt crisis as the pretext to dissolve the district and rewrite the rules governing education in the nation’s largest poor city.
By Shannon Jones, 11 June 2016
The bill safeguards the interests of hedge funds and other large investors at the expense of students and teachers.
26 May 2016
At this meeting on May 31, Socialist Equality Party presidential candidate Jerry White and vice presidential candidate Niles Niemuth will speak about the critical issues facing workers and youth.
By James Brewer, 20 May 2016
Residents of Flint spoke out in anger during a board meeting of the KWA pipeline authority.
By Nancy Hanover, 13 May 2016
Detroit Public Schools emergency manager Judge Steven Rhodes is ramping up pressure for a legislative deal in the state capitol.
By Jerry White—SEP candidate for US president, 13 May 2016
The struggle of Detroit teachers poses the need to unite all sections of the working class in a movement against big business and its political servants in both parties.
An interview with LeeAnne Walters
By our reporters, 6 May 2016
Walters, her husband, and another Flint resident, Keri Webber, angrily walked out of Obama's event Wednesday after he arrogantly declared, “The kids will be just fine.”
By Nancy Hanover, 5 May 2016
The Detroit teachers union shut down a two-day sickout as Michigan legislators debated new attacks under the guise of “rescuing” the public schools.
By our reporters, 4 May 2016
Detroit public school teachers spoke to the WSWS at a demonstration on Tuesday, the second day of their walkout.
In midst of water shutoffs, Flint water crisis
By Thomas Gaist, 4 May 2016
The new attack on Detroit teachers is part of a wider assault on the working class being carried out by both big business parties and the Obama administration.
By Niles Niemuth, 4 May 2016
The attack on Detroit teachers is just one part of an assault on every section of the working class throughout the region and beyond.
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“Our money is literally being stolen”
By Shannon Jones, 3 May 2016
Nearly all of the Detroit schools were shut down Monday as teachers protested the announcement by DPS Emergency Manager Steven Rhodes that they will not be paid over the summer months.
By Nick Rodriguez, 3 May 2016
Detroit, which lies next to one of the largest bodies of fresh water on the planet, is resuming a policy that denies thousands access to one of the most basic requirements of life.
“Everyone feels very betrayed by the union right now”
By Walter Gilberti, 29 April 2016
The Detroit Federation of Teachers’ mobilization to support new Detroit Schools legislation fizzled as teachers largely boycotted the demonstration at the state capitol in Lansing.
A crime of capitalism
By Shannon Jones, 25 April 2016
April 25 marks the second anniversary of the criminal decision to shift the city of Flint’s water supply to the polluted Flint River, setting in motion a social catastrophe.
By Shannon Jones, 21 April 2016
Two low-level state officials and a city of Flint employee face multiple felony and misdemeanor charges in relation to the lead poisoning of city residents.
By Nancy Hanover, 19 April 2016
One third of DPS schools are reporting lead or copper contamination of drinking water, with one sample at 100 times the EPA toxic level.
By Nancy Hanover, 14 April 2016
Amid a continuing drive to dismantle Detroit Public Schools, a lawsuit charges that state officials have deprived students of a “minimally adequate” education.
“What’s happening here is emblematic of what’s going on across the country”
By Shannon Jones, 31 March 2016
Detroit Free Press and Detroit News journalists held a protest Wednesday over company concessions demands, including increases in health care costs and conversion of full-time to part-time work.
By Nancy Hanover, 24 March 2016
With funding for Detroit schools in question, Judge Rhodes and Republican Governor Rick Snyder are backing legislation for an unprecedented reorganization of the impoverished city’s schools.
As April 8 fiscal deadline approaches
By Nancy Hanover, 14 March 2016
As Wall Street demands action on the reorganization of Detroit Public Schools, Judge Steven Rhodes threatened that schools could “go dark.”
By our reporters, 14 March 2016
Detroit teachers spoke to the World Socialist Web Site at the DFT emergency meeting on Thursday, March 10.
By Dan Coles, 10 March 2016
A series of fires has broken out at the facility in southwest Detroit.
By James Brewer, 9 March 2016
Clinton and Sanders said nothing about the US Environmental Protection Agency, which concealed its findings of high lead levels in Flint’s water.
By James Brewer, 5 March 2016
LeeAnne Walters, whose four children still experience symptoms from exposure to lead, named three companies and three officials in her suit.
By James Brewer, 1 March 2016
The examination of uncovered documents, combined with the thousands of newly-public emails released by Governor Rick Snyder, begin to uncover the economic interests behind the poisoning of Flint.
By Shannon Jones, 27 February 2016
Newly released emails show that top aides to Michigan Governor Rick Snyder advocated switching the Flint water supply back to the Detroit water system by October 2014, a year before the public disclosure of contamination.
By our reporters, 26 February 2016
The Detroit Federation of Teachers brought the judge who oversaw the city's bankruptcy to a meeting of school employees to sugarcoat the bipartisan attack on public education.
Who is Judge Steven Rhodes?
By Jerry White, 24 February 2016
Detroit teachers were brought to a meeting Wednesday to listen to retired judge Steven Rhodes, who, during the Detroit bankruptcy, did the dirty work for Wall Street while posturing as a neutral and even-handed arbiter.
By James Brewer, 18 February 2016
A report by a national water advocacy group surveys comparative rates in the country’s largest water systems.
By James Brewer, 16 February 2016
Eight days before switching to the heavily polluted river as a water source, a city official warned that the water system was not ready for the change.
By Nancy Hanover, 15 February 2016
Michigan’s governor, facing the twin crises of Flint and Detroit public schools, has called in Judge Steven Rhodes to reorganize the Detroit schools.
By Lawrence Porter, 13 February 2016
During a meeting of the district-sponsored Detroit Parent Network, audience members denounced the appalling conditions in the schools.
“It’s not just a fight for teachers or students, it’s a fight for education”
By Nancy Hanover, 11 February 2016
DPS students use Michigan “Count Day” to emphasize their fight to defend their teachers and the right of all young people to a decent education.
By Lawrence Porter and Nancy Hanover, 11 February 2016
The American Federation of Teachers is seeking to divert opposition into fruitless appeals to state Democrats and Republicans—the very forces seeking to dismantle public education.
By Andre Damon, 9 February 2016
Retired truck drivers and delivery workers said in a hearing in Detroit Monday that they had been notified their pension benefits would be reduced by between 50 and 70 percent.
“This is a dog and pony show”
By a WSWS reporting team, 9 February 2016
Retirees denounced both political parties along with the Teamsters union for the devastating pension cuts being demanded by the Central States Pension Fund.
By Carlos Delgado, 9 February 2016
One of the first doctors to describe the effects of lead on children called the disease “a toxicity of habitation.” Today it might be more accurately termed a toxicity of poverty.
By Nancy Hanover, 6 February 2016
As Emergency Manager Darnell Earley resigns, union officials and Michigan politicians are working overtime to try to derail the struggle of Detroit teachers.
By E.P. Bannon, 29 January 2016
The meeting, which was attended by teachers, city workers, autoworkers, students and other sections of the working class, discussed a political strategy for the entire working class.
By E.P. Bannon, 28 January 2016
Leaders of the group, We the Students, at Cass Technical High School in Detroit explained the reasons behind their student walkout on Monday.
28 January 2016
Over a hundred workers, retirees and young people, including representatives of teachers and students participating in a sickout protest in Detroit Public Schools, as well as autoworkers and Flint residents, attended an emergency meeting called by the Socialist Equality Party and the International Youth and Students for Social Equality in Detroit Wednesday. A full report on the meeting will follow tomorrow.
By E.P. Bannon, 27 January 2016
As teachers were forced to appear in court, high school students staged walkouts in protest of repression against teachers and the deplorable conditions in city schools.
By Jerry White, 26 January 2016
In a highly political decision, a Detroit judge denied the request by the emergency manager over the Detroit schools for legal action to halt the wave of teacher “sickout” protests.
“This isn’t just our fight, it’s for public education across the country.”
By Lawrence Porter, 26 January 2016
Detroit teachers in court Monday spoke with the World Socialist Web Site after a judge rejected a request for legal action against sickout protests.
”Democracy is being taken away in Michigan”
By Nancy Hanover, 25 January 2016
Teachers face a hearing Monday as the Detroit Public Schools seeks an injunction against sickouts and legislators ramp up efforts to ban opposition to the destruction of public education.
By Andre Damon, 23 January 2016
At least 10 people have died from an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease, which has been linked to the poisoning of Flint residents covered up for more than a year by the government.
By Eric London, 23 January 2016
DPS is threatening to fire all protesting teachers, encouraging teachers to snoop on each other and employing reactionary legal arguments to attack public education.
By Eric London, 22 January 2016
The catastrophe in Michigan, including the lead poisoning of thousands of residents in Flint, has provoked outrage across the country.
By Jerry White, 22 January 2016
While a judge denied an initial request for a temporary injunction, 23 teachers have been ordered to appear on Monday morning to answer accusations that they organized “illegal strikes.”
22 January 2016
The Socialist Equality Party and International Youth and Students for Social Equality are calling a public meeting in Detroit, Michigan on January 27 to discuss a political strategy to unite the working class.
By Jerry White, 21 January 2016
Twenty-eight defendants are named in a legal action, which could result in large fines if teachers continue “sick out” protests.
“We are all in this together. This is class warfare”
By Jerry White and Buster Haycook, 21 January 2016
Hundreds of teachers shut down the school system in a “sick out” protest Wednesday against decaying buildings, overcrowded classrooms and years of pay and benefit cuts.
By Jerry White, 20 January 2016
In a State of the State address, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder sought to cover up and evade responsibility for the poisoning of an American city.
By James Brewer, 18 January 2016
Workers in Flint and surrounding areas are incensed at the continued crisis around the poisoning of Flint’s water.
By Nancy Hanover, 18 January 2016
Fearing that the sickouts could trigger a broader rebellion by the working class, the enemies of teachers spent last week trying to quash the movement.
By Jerry White, 15 January 2016
After three straight days of “sick-out” protests, hundreds of determined teachers attended a union meeting Thursday, where officials tried to smother resistance.
By Jerry White, 15 January 2016
Rank-and-file teachers have taken their own initiative and acted independently of every faction of the Detroit Federation of Teachers and political establishment in Detroit and Lansing.
By Jerry White, 13 January 2016
It is no accident that social opposition is taking the form of a rebellion against the trade unions, which have long served as industrial police for the corporations and government.
By Nancy Hanover, 13 January 2016
Despite the attempts by Michigan politicians and the Detroit Federation of Teachers to end teachers’ growing protests, the sickouts are continuing.
“For too long we looked to the union… now we have to do it ourselves”
By Jerry White, 12 January 2016
The struggle has erupted outside of the control of the Detroit Federation of Teachers, which has a long and sordid history of collaborating with state and local officials.
By James Brewer and Jerry White, 8 January 2016
The poisoning of the population in the former manufacturing center for General Motors—and the cover-up by state officials—highlights the socially destructive character of American capitalism.
Behind the Detroit Public School’s debt numbers
By Nancy Hanover, 8 January 2016
The Detroit Public Schools have been the target of both sordid profit-taking and deliberate destabilization by privatization forces.
By Nancy Hanover, 8 January 2016
Pro-privatization politicians and financial interests are seeking to use the crisis at the Detroit Public Schools to ram through a reorganization of the district.
By Matthew Brennan, 31 December 2015
The resignations are an attempt by Republican governor Rick Snyder to obscure the criminal role he and his "Emergency Managers" in Flint and Detroit have played in creating a public health crisis.
By By our reporter, 17 December 2015
Dwayne Cole and Siretha Lattimore made the wrenching decision to hand their children over to state custody after being homeless for a year, despite Dwayne’s full-time job at an auto parts factory
By James Brewer, 17 December 2015
Detroit's policy of mass water shutoffs has been called a human rights violation by the United Nations.
By Kathleen Martin, 17 December 2015
With 40 percent of residents living in poverty, many Detroit workers are forced to find alternative ways to make money, including selling their plasma.