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bellant vs. snyder

Ken Lund / Flickr Creative Commons HTTP://MICHRAD.IO/1LXRDJM

Michigan's emergency manager law violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and should be struck down, according to a lawsuit recently filed in federal court.

The suit charges that the law, formally known as the Local Financial Stability and Choice Act (Public Act 436), discriminates against majority black communities. 

The lawsuit claims the state unequally applied the emergency manager law to majority black cities and school districts – even when majority-white communities had the same or worse financial problems.

Three days ago, the Michigan Civil Rights Commission asked the highest court in the land to decide whether our state’s emergency manager law is unconstitutional.

Specifically, the issue is whether the law violates the federal Voting Rights Act by lessening the voting power of minorities. Nearly all the cities and school districts where emergency managers have been appointed had black majority populations.