BY DOMINICK SOKOTOFF AND SHANNON STOCKING
October 4, 2021
GOOD MORNING, HAPPY OCTOBER and WELCOME BACK to A2 Outlook. We hope you all enjoyed a quieter weekend as U-M football beat Wisconsin in Madison for the first time since 2001. October crept up on us all, bringing the first taste of fall weather and a chill in the air over the past week.
We decided to take a much needed break last week to acknowledge and work to resolve burnout in the workplace. Our editor-in-chief published a powerful piece on burnout last week as well, but we’re back and better than ever.
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Supporters of reproductive rights gathered for a rally and march in downtown Ann Arbor Saturday afternoon. Anna Fuder/Daily. Buy this photo.
SHOOTER SCARE: A violent threat against women at the University of Michigan circulated Saturday morning, but UMPD and the FBI identified the residence the threat was posted from as being out-of-state. An update from UMPD stated, “based on the investigation, there is nothing to indicate imminent harm to our community.”
In a Sunday night email to The Michigan Daily, Mara Schneider, a field agent with the FBI’s Detroit office, confirmed that the authorities have no suspect or individual in custody regarding the shooting.
PRO-CHOICE PROTEST: Pro-choice advocates marched across downtown Ann Arbor as part of a nationwide protest to protect women’s abortion rights. U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell, D-Mich., spoke at the protest, as well as Lori Carpentier, CEO of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan. The Ann Arbor protest was one of many across the country held this weekend before the new U.S. Supreme Court term begins today.
BOOSTER APPOINTMENTS: Following the CDC’s recommendation for immunocompromised individuals to receive a COVID-19 booster shot, Washtenaw County and Michigan Medicine are offering appointments for individuals in need of a third shot.
Third dose vaccines are currently being offered at Washtenaw County Community Mental Health. Additionally, Washtenaw County plans on expanding drive-thru vaccination clinics in October for broader distribution.
MANDATE DEBATE: Ann Arbor Public Schools is facing criticism from parents who believe that AAPS should mandate COVID-19 vaccines for all faculty and staff. Since the first day of school in August, AAPS has had a total of 98 confirmed COVID-19 cases with a significant upward trend in recent weeks. AAPS currently requires all unvaccinated staff to get tested once a week, but parents say this preventative measure is not enough.
VIRTUAL REBOOT: Ann Arbor’s Pittsfield Elementary will begin virtual learning today through Oct. 8, following elevated COVID-19 case levels. Additionally, AAPS reported that there have been a significant number of absences from the student body, with more than 30% of students out of school on Friday and at least 50 students in quarantine. Pittsfield Elementary is the first school in the district to take such a measure this semester.
AAPS ASBESTOS ALERT: State investigators discovered evidence of asbestos in AAPS’s Community High School Tuesday morning, according to WXYZ. These claims follow previous suspicions of asbestos present in AAPS elementary schools in the late summer. Currently the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration is conducting an investigation to determine whether students and workers were exposed to the cancer-causing substance.
ADMINISTRATOR APPOINTMENT: Following the resignation of former city administrator Tom Crawford, who allegedly made discriminatory remarks, City Council voted last Monday to hire Milton Dohoney as the next city administrator, according to MLive.
Dohoney was one of two finalists for the position when City Council unanimously voted him for the position, citing his experience across many states. Dohoney will be Ann Arbor’s first Black city administrator since Sylvester Murray in 1979.
COUNCIL RECAP: City Council approved the new Ann Arbor Renters Commission last Monday night to improve representation of tenants in city decisions. The commission was implemented after months of debates between renters and landlords, specifically over the Early Leasing Ordinance which restricts how early landlords can show currently occupied units to prospective new tenants.
City Council also passed an ordinance that would require users of e-bikes and e-scooters to yield to pedestrians, but also allow them to be driven on sidewalks and parked in motor vehicle parking spaces.
IN THE RUNNING: Carrie Rheingans, a lecturer at the U-M School of Social Work, announced that she will be running for the Ward 5 City Council seat currently held by Councilmember Ali Ramlawi, D-Ward 5, according to a Sept. 16 press release. Rheingans will need to collect at least 100 nominating petition signatures to be eligible.
“Carrie decided to take this step after years of trying and failing to enter the expensive Ann Arbor housing market and learning that despite comprising more than half of city residents, no council members are currently renters,” the press release states. “In addition to housing affordability, Carrie wants to help Ann Arbor live up to our progressive and inclusive ideals, meet our A2Zero climate goals, and ensure that all of us who are eligible can cast our ballots freely, safely, and equally.”
FRESH OPTION: The long-awaited downtown Target opened on Sept. 21 on State Street underneath the State Theatre. The location is a small format store with selection catered to the needs of college students. Students have specifically expressed excitement about the store opening following long-time concerns over the lack of access to grocery stores on campus.
“Dingell announces legislation to hold colleges accountable for sexual misconduct” … The Michigan Daily
“The Dystopian Delta University” … The Chronicle of Higher Education
“Bivouac celebrates its 50th anniversary” … The Michigan Daily
“New Standard dispensary opens on N. Main St.” … The Michigan Daily
“Home invasion, sexual assault reported near Ann Arbor’s Kerrytown neighborhood” … The Michigan Daily
a2Tech360 is presenting a week full of events related to technology and innovation.
The Ann Arbor Farmers Market is holding its second food truck rally this year, which will take place on Wednesday from 5 to 8 p.m.
A2 Artoberfest will take place in Kerrytown and along Fourth Avenue this Saturday and Sunday.
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