Civil Rights

to COVID-19 and lifting the statewide disaster declaration allowing suspension of speedy-trial rules would overwhelm the judicial branch. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

COVID-19 infects Kansas judicial system with backlog of more than 1,700 trials

BY: - October 7, 2020

At least 1,700 criminal trials have been delayed due to COVID-19 in Kansas, and lifting statewide disaster declaration will overwhelm judiciary.

Supreme Court ruling on Voting Rights Act opened floodgates for new restrictions

BY: - October 7, 2020

It hadn’t even been a day since the U.S. Supreme Court dismantled one of the pillars of voting rights in America, and North Carolina lawmakers weren’t wasting any time. Republican legislators had been contemplating a bill that would require photo identification to vote. The bill had plenty of support, but it had spent the past […]

Black Lives Matter casts doubt on independence of Topeka’s police auditor

BY: - October 6, 2020

TOPEKA — Leaders of Black Lives Matter Topeka say the city’s police department must shift its focus to correcting unjust policing systems and practices to achieve meaningful reform. More than 50 people gathered Tuesday evening in front of the Statehouse before marching in near silence to City Hall, where they called for increased accountability from […]

Voter fraud myth persists despite constant failure to prove claims

BY: - October 6, 2020

TOPEKA, Kan. — Scott Moore had never heard of the Interstate Voter Registration Crosscheck program before election officials in Kansas and Florida exposed his personal information, along with 944 other Kansas voters. The now-defunct Crosscheck was designed to help county clerks clean up registration lists by looking for voters who had moved to neighboring states. […]

The Kansas Board of Barbering ran into problems at a joint House and Senate committee hearing on proposed rules allowing the board to offer a preliminary assessment of whether a person's civil or criminal history could disqualify them for a state license. This shop in Lawrence is operated by Rep. Mike Amyx, a Democrat in the Kansas House. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Bipartisan scorn for barbering board’s style of grading potential licensees

BY: - October 6, 2020

Kansas legislators are skeptical of the state barbering board's plan for weighing civil and criminal records to decide suitability for a barbering license.


Black girls in Kansas face harsher discipline than their white peers — this needs to change

BY: - October 6, 2020

The Kansas Reflector welcomes opinion pieces from writers who share our goal of widening the conversation about how public policies affect the day-to-day lives of people throughout our state. Jazmine Rogers is a youth leader with the Kansas juvenile justice group Progeny. Growing up in Kansas, I’ve witnessed the heartbreaking relentlessness of our state’s youth […]

Republican nominee for U.S. Senate Roger Marshall speaks to potential voters about abortion and other issues Saturday at the outset of a Kansas GOP bus tour one month before voters decide outcome of his campaign against Democratic U.S. Senate nominee Barbara Bollier. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Abortion a blunt instrument in Bollier, Marshall battle for open U.S. Senate seat

BY: - October 3, 2020

Abortion politics driving wedge into U.S. Senate showdown in Kansas between Republican Roger Marshall and Democrat Barbara Bollier.

Former Topeka resident Kevin Young, a poet and author, will become director of the director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. (Melanie Dunea/Smithsonian Institution)

Former Topekan to lead Smithsonian’s museum of African American history, culture

BY: - September 30, 2020

The new director of Smithsonian's National Museum of African American History and Culture is poet and author Kevin Young, a former Topeka resident.

Biden says he’ll support election outcome, but Trump urges supporters to ‘watch very carefully’

BY: - September 30, 2020

Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden pledged Tuesday night to accept the outcome of the election, while President Donald Trump urged his supporters to “watch very carefully” what happens as voters cast their general-election ballots.  Those comments were in response to a question at the first presidential debate from moderator and Fox News anchor Chris Wallace, […]

Clockwise from top left, Sean Gatewood, Tim Carpenter, Barbara Hickert and Rocky Nichols during a recording of the Kansas Reflector podcast on public reporting on COVID-19 clusters by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment. (Sherman Smith/Kansas Reflector)

Kansas long-term care advocates view public COVID-19 report as ‘life-or-death’ guide

BY: - September 28, 2020

Kansas advocates for the elderly and disabled in long-term care facilities praise KDHE reporting on clusters, but would welcome more data.

Kansas public defender not convinced of need for blanket suspension of speedy-trial law

BY: - September 25, 2020

A Kansas defense lawyer is frustrated by suspension of speedy-trial law, while the state's attorney general expects a flood of lawsuits on that point.

Kansas organizations advocating for people with disabilities and elderly individuals are urging Lee Norman, left, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, and Gov. Laura Kelly to resume and expand public disclosure of COVID-19 clusters. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Disabled, elderly advocates eager for KDHE reporting of site-specific COVID-19 outbreaks

BY: - September 21, 2020

Advocates of elderly and disabled people in Kansas are urging KDHE to resume facility-specific reporting on spread of COVID-19 infection.