Some homeless advocates are voicing support for legislation that would classify violence against homeless people as a hate crime. Supporters of the idea say the issue has taken on new urgency following the recent brutal murders of Allison Gorman and Kee Thompson as they slept in a lot in Albuquerque.
The New Mexico Coalition to End Homelessness is the latest group to come out in support of enhanced sentences for people who attack homeless people. Other supporters include Albuquerque City Councilor Rey Garduño and state Senator Daniel Ivey-Soto.
The Doubleclicks, Angela and Aubrey Webber, play a studio concert for The Children's Hour
The Doubleclicks are a pair of sisters from Portland, Oregon who write songs that are all at once snarky, geeky and sweet. Aubrey and Angela Webber joined us on The Children's Hour during their summer tour and performed live for us. Their kid's CD, "Worst Superpower Ever" is available at iTunes, Amazon and their website, thedoubleclicks.com
Chris Dracup's full set from the 2014 Route 66 Summerfest main stage
Chris Dracup, a life long resident of New Mexico, began performing at the age of sixteen in his hometown of Taos, NM. Since then he has been a singer and lead guitarist with some of New Mexico's favorite bands, including "The Muttz", "The Rattle Cats", "The Chris Dracup Trio" and "The Chris Dracup Project". KUNM was there at the Route 66 Summerfest street festival to capture their live set. Mixed by Eli Willard. Find details on Chris Dracup at http://www.chrisdracup.com/index.html
Some New Mexico immigration lawyers are speaking out in opposition to the Obama administration’s proposal to expedite deportation proceedings for Central American women and children, some of whom are being detained in Artesia in southern New Mexico.
This month marks the 69th anniversary of world’s first atomic plume rising into New Mexico’s sky. The day the nuclear bomb went off, there were 19,000 people living near the Trinity test blast site, including Native Americans of several tribes and pueblos. Residents weren’t given any warning of the detonation, and the health effects lingered through the decades—but those facts aren’t yet part of public conversation or historic memory.
ICE Denies Late Night New Mexico Deportation Claim – The Associated Press
Federal immigration officials are denying allegations that immigrants held at a New Mexico detention center were being deported in the middle of the night.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokeswoman Gillian Christensen said Wednesday the women and children housed at the Artesia facility weren't being pulled from sleep to board removal flights to Central America.
Kirtland Air Force held their quarterly Citizen Advisory Board meeting on Tuesday to talk about cleaning up the fuel spill threatening Albuquerque's drinking water supply. People learned they may see more action in the coming months than they have over the past 15 years.
The evening kicked off with a brief power point presentation as one of Kirtland’s project managers went over various clean up efforts. Then the public was allowed to ask questions.
Members of a legal working group who visited the federal immigrant detention center in Artesia say some of the women and young children housed there are reporting a lack of access to medical care and legal counsel. Tannia Esparza, executive director of the advocacy group Young Women United, was a member of the group that visited the detention facility.
“At first glance the facility seems to be in working order,” Esparza said. “But the women told us the conditions are not adequate.”
Sick Immigrant Kids Reportedly Not Getting Meds - The Associated Press
Immigration advocates who were allowed to visit a New Mexico detention center say women there are complaining that children aren't getting proper medical care and people are being deported before they can see a lawyer.
UPDATE 7/24: A newly released video shows Albuquerque SWAT officers yelling at an armed man several times to drop his gun before he was fatally shot.
Videos made public Thursday showed two tactical officers running after a fleeing 33-year-old Jeremy Joe Robertson before at least two shots are heard. Another video shows what police say is a witness who was held at gunpoint by Robertson prior to his encounter with officers.
Albuquerque police said the ATF was seeking to take Robertson into custody when Albuquerque officers Anthony Sedler and Ramon Ornelas shot him Tuesday.
Southwest Retains Low Rankings In Child Welfare – The Associated Press
The Southwest continues to earn dismal marks for child well-being, with New Mexico, Arizona and Nevada ranking in the bottom five of an annual national report card on education, health care and poverty.
New Mexico, which last year was in last place, moved back up to 49th in this year's Kids Count Data Book. The report cited a slight drop in child poverty, improvements in high school graduation rates and a drop in the teenage birth rate.
UPDATE from The Associated Press: Violence Against Albuquerque Homeless Commonplace
The brutality of the killings on two homeless men shocked residents of New Mexico's most populous city, but homeless people and advocates for homeless services say violence is commonplace for those who live on the street.
Three teens are accused of killing two men whose heads were smashed with cinder blocks, and police say one of the three told police that they'd previously attacked other homeless people.
Albuquerque police are investigating whether three teenagers suspected of beating two homeless men to death with cinder blocks, bricks and a metal fence pole are responsible for dozens of other attacks on transients in recent months.
Police say 18-year-old Alex Rios, and two boys, ages 16 and 15, are being held in Bernalillo County detention facilities. A criminal complaint said one of the teens told police that they had attacked more than 50 people in recent months.
A four square-mile area in Albuquerque's Southeast Heights, the "International District," is home to recent immigrants from Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America, along with a sizable Hispanic community and the city's largest concentration of Native Americans. New Mexico poet Valerie Martínez and artists from the local non-profit organization Littleglobe have been working with members of the District since 2011 on a variety of community storytelling projects. The public is invited to view those projects, along with performances, exhibitions and other events, at locations all around the
The state Department of Health will not be moving forward with two proposed rule changes to New Mexico’s medical marijuana program. The program’s advocates say it looks like the Governor Susana Martinez's administration is finally starting to see things from the patient’s point of view.
At an interim legislative committee hearing on Thursday a spokesman from the Department of Health surprised virtually everyone in the room when he announced they had decided to back off some proposed changes, including reducing the number of plants a patient could grow for themselves.
Public television’s Antiques Roadshow visits the Albuquerque Convention Center Saturday as part of an eight-city summer tour. The show appraises antiques from locals who are hoping to cash in on their prized possessions.
KUNM's Chris Boros spoke with Marsha Bemko, the show’s Executive Producer. She says the show has visited New Mexico on multiple occasions. Antiques Roadshow is taping three episodes in Albuquerque for broadcast next year.
New Mexico Scaling Back Marijuana Program Changes – The Associated Press and Albuquerque Journal
Gov. Susana Martinez's administration is scaling back possible changes for New Mexico's medical marijuana program.
The Albuquerque Journal reports that a Department of Health official told legislators during a Thursday hearing in Taos Pueblo that the agency will scrap two proposals that had come under fire from pot producers and users.
New Mexico Incumbents Hold Campaign Cash Edge – The Associated Press
New campaign finance reports show that Democratic challenger Roxanne "Rocky" Lara has raised more money in the past three months than Republican incumbent Steve Pearce in New Mexico's 2nd Congressional District race.
However, Pearce still maintains an overall campaign cash advantage.
Pearce reported cash-on-hand of nearly $1.5 million at the end of last month and Lara had almost $712,000.
Senator Martin Heinrich discussed the Central American migrant crisis along the U.S./Mexico border Wednesday on the Senate floor in Washington, D.C.
"We have a human crisis at our southern border that requires immediate but compassionate response," the New Mexico Democrat said. He called on his Republican colleagues in the Senate to work with President Obama to deal with the crisis and demand that House Republicans bring the Senate’s immigration bill to the House floor for debate.
Sat. 7/19 7p: Once again KUNM broadcasts Summerfest, live from Nob Hill in Albuquerque. You’ll hear the phenomenal guitar work of singer-songwriter Raul Midon. Also, enjoy local musicians like bluesman Chris Dracup, women's voice and percussion ensemble Mala Maña and Albuquerque’s newest Salsa Group En-Joy. Grammy winners Arrested Development will end the show with their unique brand of positive hip-hop.
It’s the next best thing to being there! Live and local music from Summerfest, Saturday night starting at 7:00.
Santa Fe Vote Sought On Pot Decriminalization – The Associated Press and Santa Fe New Mexican
Activists have submitted thousands of petition signatures to try to force a November vote in Santa Fe on decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana.
ProgressNow New Mexico and Drug Policy Action on Tuesday submitted petitions bearing more than 7,100 signatures. They need at least 5,763 valid signatures from registered city voters to force a vote on their proposal.