California Wants to Repeal Felony HIV Criminalization Laws. No, That Does Not Deserve Backlash.

Recently, California legislators took the first steps towards combatting HIV criminalization by introducing a bill that would downgrade the charge for failing to disclose positive status to sexual partners from a felony to a misdemeanor. The bill would also apply to penalties against non-disclosure to blood banks.

Desmond Phillips Killed By Police During Mental Health Episode

Many of the deaths at the hands of police are underscored by a common thread of mental health needs that often goes ignored by the public. The latest example of a black person being killed while suffering from an “episode” is Desmond Phillips, 25, who was shot after his father called police to their shared apartment in Chico, California. 

California Ends Statute of Limitations For Rape Following Bill Cosby Case

Bill Cosby has been accused of rape by dozens of women but only a handful of them will be able to take any kind of legal action due to statute of limitations that legally absolves rapists of any accountability of their crime(s) after a specified amount of time has passed. If that sounds like a problematic concept to you, you’re not alone.

California Governor Jerry Brown has now signed a bill that officially ended the state’s statute of limitations on rape cases, according to Reuters. The law takes effect on January 1, 2017. 

It Shouldn’t Be Surprising That Two Black Pitzer Students Didn’t Want White Roommates

Going to college at a predominantly White institution (PWI) as a queer Black woman was difficult on its own. However, when considering that I was also first-generation and low income, I was at a severe disadvantage academically, professionally and socially. This is why a recent story about a Pitzer College student’s request to live with non-white people struck such a chord with me.

Homelessness remains a serious problem in the state of California

By: Chaya Crowder

There is a homeless crisis in Los Angeles County. On a given night there are more than 46,000 people without homes in Los Angeles. Policy makers and community activists are drawing attention to this growing issue. A May 2016 poll by the African American Voter Registration, Education and Participation project found that 93 percent of African American voters in California view homelessness as a high priority for elected officials to address.

California Is Now Guaranteed A Female Senator of Color

The state of California has practically guaranteed some diversity to the U.S. Senate. Throughout the history of Congress, there has only been one black woman in the Senate and no Latinas – although there has been a handful of each as members of the House of Representatives. Thanks to a new law that places the two candidates with the most votes in a runoff, regardless of their party affiliation, California’s next senator will change all of that. 

Jasmine Richards’ ‘Felony Lynching’ Charge Is ‘Political Prosecution’, Lawyer Says

This morning, Jasmine [Abdullah] Richards, a 28-year-old Black Lives Matter organizer and founder of the Pasadena, California chapter was sentenced after being convicted on a charge of “federal lynching.” She is the first African American person to ever be convicted of this crime in the United States.

Fortunately, Richards will only serve 90 days for the charge, 18 of them having already been served compared to the six months that the prosecution requested.