Civil Rights

Exterior of the state prison in Concord

Officials outline preliminary plan for $30 million, 24-bed hospital for forensic patients

BY: - October 8, 2021

Patients with mental illness being held at the prison’s forensic hospital for security reasons could be moved to a new 24-bed hospital on the state hospital grounds by late 2023, state officials said Thursday.  The hospital will be managed by the Department of Health and Human Services – not a private company – and a […]

Gavel in a courtroom

Attorney general files complaint accusing Dover woman of violating Civil Rights Act

BY: - October 7, 2021

Attorney General John Formella filed an enforcement action on Thursday against Kristina Graper of Dover, who is accused of violating the New Hampshire Civil Rights Act. The complaint against Graper, 51, accuses her of threatening a Black 9-year-old child in a Dover park on May 10. Graper told the child she would “kneel on his […]

The state house as viewed through a stone arch

Bill to bar discrimination based on hairstyle fails to gain committee’s support

BY: - September 28, 2021

A proposal to bar “discrimination based on hairstyles relative to a person’s ethnicity” was deemed “inexpedient to legislate” by the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday in an 11-10 vote along party lines. Rep. Alexis Simpson, an Exeter Democrat, spoke in support of the bill, as well as an amendment that was introduced to broaden the […]

A sign saying vote here in a red arrow that points toward a line of people in a building

ACLU criticizes New Hampshire AG for signing letter threatening legal action over voting act

BY: - September 20, 2021

New Hampshire is one of 23 states, each with a Republican attorney general, that signed on to a letter threatening legal action if the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act becomes law. Devon Chaffee, executive director of the ACLU of New Hampshire, called the threat “unconscionable.” “Attorney General [John] Formella’s opposition to this critical legislation […]

Ken Burns speaks at a lectern during the Tribeca Film Festival

Muhammad Ali and us: A conversation with Ken Burns

BY: - September 7, 2021

Ken Burns was never a boxing fan, yet when the idea of making “Muhammad Ali” was first suggested, he knew immediately that he had to make it. This was not the norm for Burns, who always has several film projects going at once and often takes months or even years to say yes to a […]

Muhammad Ali lies on his stomach making a fist

Commentary: Burns’s ‘Muhammad Ali’ tells a story that teems with relevance

BY: - September 7, 2021

Although Ken Burns’s “Muhammad Ali” opens during the age of black-and-white television, Ali’s spirit remains so alive today that it is jarring to see him dancing about in colorless footage as Sonny Liston stalks the ring seeking to land the blow that will shut the kid’s mouth. That is what much of the crowd and […]

A graphic showing blending genders

State eliminates documentation requirement for gender X marker on licenses, identification cards

BY: - August 18, 2021

Since 2014, the Division of Motor Vehicles has required the signature of a health care provider from anyone making a gender change. Beginning last year that also applied for those choosing X as their gender. But it was never required by law. A Granite State College student has put an end to that practice.  Rho […]

Indigenous students load loaves of bread into a wheelbarrow outside of a bakery in 1880

A federal investigation seeks to uncover the painful history of Native American boarding schools

BY: - July 8, 2021

WASHINGTON – The Native American children traveled on trains, thousands of miles from their homes, to Pennsylvania’s Carlisle Indian Industrial School in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Many had been forcibly taken from their parents and communities.  Once there, they had to hand over their belongings, put on uniforms, cut off their braids, adopt […]

Closeup of handcuffs

Bill barring release of mug shots approved by Judiciary Committee

BY: - May 25, 2021

Senators on the Judiciary Committee approved a measure Tuesday that would bar police from releasing most mug shots after arrests, in a 3-2 committee vote that defied party lines.  House Bill 125 would still allow police departments to take post-arrest photographs of accused perpetrators. But the bill would prohibit the release of the mug shots […]

Manny Espitia

Targeted by white supremacists, lawmaker seeks solidarity

BY: - May 25, 2021

Early last week, Rep. Manny Espitia’s friend – Nashua Alderman Tom Lopez – told him that white supremacists had left a tag on a community mural near the rail trail, in a neighborhood that is predominantly Latino. The messages included “Keep New England White,” “Defend New England,” and “Death to Israel.” Espitia’s first reaction was […]

Closeup of handcuffs

‘Qualified immunity’ amendment added to police reform bill

BY: - May 12, 2021

A Democratic state lawmaker is pushing to overhaul “qualified immunity” in New Hampshire in a last-minute amendment to a bipartisan police reform bill.  In an amendment released Tuesday, Rep. Paul Berch of Westmoreland proposed making New Hampshire public employers liable for any actions by their employees that are unconstitutional. The change would mean a town, […]

John Lewis

Commentary: Pass the For the People Act to fight voter suppression, root out corruption

BY: - May 6, 2021

The late congressman John Lewis once said: “The vote is precious. It is almost sacred. It is the most powerful nonviolent tool we have in a democracy.” I couldn’t agree more. I’ve said before that voting is not just a right but it is our civic duty, and voting should be conducted safely, fairly, and […]