KUNM

Marisa Demarco

Reporter

Marisa Demarco is a reporter based in Albuquerque, N.M. She's spent more than a decade in journalism, founding the New Mexico Compass, and editing and writing for the Weekly Alibi, the Albuquerque Tribune and UNM's Daily Lobo. She covered poverty and public health until September 2016 when she became a general assignment reporter at KUNM. 

Ways to Connect

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

  

When extremist speakers come to town, free speech advocates argue it’s their right under the First Amendment to say whatever they want. But what does it cost to have an event like that on a university campus? Ever since Milo Yiannopoulos' event in January sparked protests, KUNM's been trying to find out. 

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

People around the globe demonstrated and marched for workers rights on Monday in celebration of International Workers Day. In Albuquerque, hundreds gathered in Tiguex Park. The rally highlighted how education, labor and immigrant rights are entwined in New Mexico.  

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

May 1 is International Workers Day, a celebration of the working class and labor around the world. Here in New Mexico, civil rights organizations, religious leaders, unions and families will participate in a national strike and marches, and a rally in Albuquerque that’s expected to draw thousands.

Wolfram Burner via Flickr / Creative Commons License

KUNM Call In Show Thu. 4/27 8a. For years, the University of New Mexico’s been heavily criticized about how it handles sexual assault, and it’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month. This Thursday morning at 8, we’ll be talking about how UNM can do a better job of helping students who’ve been assaulted—and stopping this kind of violence on campus.

Students, we want to hear from you. What needs to change? How can trust be rebuilt between students and the university?

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Universities around the country are grappling with security risks and costs when student groups bring extremist speakers to town. Ever since Milo Yiannopoulos came to the University of New Mexico earlier this year, KUNM has been trying to find out how much security for the event cost. 

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

It’s been about a year since the Department of Justice released the results of its investigation into how New Mexico’s flagship university handles sexual assault cases. The federal report was heavily critical and said assault and harassment have caused students to leave the University of New Mexico. Last night, students stood in solidarity with survivors.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

All around the state, evidence from sexual assault cases sits untested. Per capita, New Mexico’s backlog of sexual assault evidence kits is the worst in the nation, according to our state auditor. Most of those kits are in Albuquerque. Even though legislators have passed measures about the backlog, and Mayor Richard Berry proposed putting $1 million toward shrinking it, advocates say it’s getting worse every month. 

Mark Woodward

Did Gov. Susana Martinez violate the state’s sunshine law by failing to provide public records to a Santa Fe newspaper? That’s one of two questions at the heart of a lawsuit brought by the Santa Fe Reporter against the governor. We talked about the paper’s discrimination claim in our first story. Here we dig into the lawsuit’s allegations of government secrecy. 

Mark Woodward

When she was running for office, Susana Martinez campaigned on open government and promises of transparency. But journalists here say her administration routinely blocks access to state experts and employees, and won’t respond to questions from news organizations that have published critical stories. According to a lawsuit filed by the Santa Fe Reporter against the governor, that kind of blacklisting is discrimination and censorship.

From the 2013 ACLU-NM report "Inside The Box"

Advocates around the country have been working to limit the use of solitary confinement in jails and prisons. The New Mexico Legislature passed a bill this year that would prohibit putting people who are under 18 or pregnant or who have a serious mental illness into solitary. But last week, Gov. Susana Martinez vetoed it.

Mark Woodward

Testimony ended today in the three-day trial of SFR v. Gov. Susana Martinez with Mark Zusman, who co-owns the newspaper and two other weeklies, saying all three prioritize the watchdog function of journalism. 

Mark Woodward

A former spokesman for Gov. Susana Martinez testified today in the Santa Fe Reporter’s public records and viewpoint discrimination lawsuit against the governor. He said pushing her message, not responding to inquiries from journalists, was his top priority.

Mark Woodward / with permission

The SFR v. Gov. Susana Martinez trial began today in state District Court with the governor’s high-powered, contract defense lawyer attacking the credibility of the journalists who filed the lawsuit, suggesting they were not precise, not knowledgable, not prepared and not invested in the profession.

Amador Loureiro via Pexels.com / Creative Commons License

President Donald Trump’s administration is sparring with the national news media lately, but those tensions have been growing in New Mexico for quite a while. It’s been over three years since Santa Fe’s alternative weekly newspaper sued Gov. Susana Martinez over press freedom and the public’s right to know. 

Wikimedia commons via CC

KUNM Call In Show 3/16 8a: President Trump has called the press the enemy of the American people. But that attitude from government leaders is nothing new here in New Mexico. It's Sunshine Week, so we’ll be talking about the essential local stories that reporters had to fight to get, and sunlight as a disinfectant in the dark corners of power.

Arianna Sena / Creative Commons

Who should investigate or prosecute controversial police use of force and shootings? That’s a problem that comes up in law enforcement departments everywhere. A bill introduced during this legislative session tries to address it, but the measure’s being hamstrung by this year’s budget crunch. 

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Last fall, a jury couldn’t reach a unanimous verdict for the two former Albuquerque Police Department Officers facing murder charges for shooting and killing homeless camper James Boyd. And that left the door open for another trial. 

Gwyneth Doland

Domestic violence gets a lot of attention in New Mexico after something really gruesome happens, but long-term health consequences often go overlooked. A measure in the Roundhouse draws attention to the effects of strangulation. 

Wikimedia Commons via CC

President Trump eliminated protections for transgender students that allow them to use the bathroom of their choice on Wednesday. In New Mexico’s largest school district, those rights are preserved. 

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Congress passed a law decades ago to apologize to people who were exposed to radiation when the U.S. tested nuclear weapons. New Mexico’s never been included even though the first detonation of a nuclear bomb in human history happened right here in 1945.

Courtesy Mayahuel Garza

A judge ruled Monday, Feb. 13, against temporarily halting the oil pipeline in North Dakota, though court battles are ongoing, and people there continue to protest. Mayahuel Garza from Los Lunas, N.M., has made many trips to North Dakota to stand with the water protectors, deliver supplies and offer traditional Aztec ceremony and dance. She spoke with KUNM late last week about her reaction to the news that the Army Corps of Engineers was clearing the way for construction of the pipeline to begin. 

Wikimedia Commons via CC

The first time an atomic bomb was ever detonated, it happened in New Mexico. The Trinity test spread radiation far and wide here in 1945. People fighting for the health effects of the blast to be acknowledged by the federal government released the first extensive report on Friday, Feb. 10.

Joe Gratz / Flickr via Creative Commons

Public defenders are strapped for cash, and some are saying things are so tight, it’s creating a constitutional crisis for New Mexicans facing charges. The Public Defenders Office made its case for more funding at the Roundhouse on Monday.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

People around the nation packed major airports this past weekend denouncing President Trump’s executive order barring refugees and—temporarily—immigrants from seven largely Muslim countries. The same was true in New Mexico. A huge and diverse group of demonstrators descended on the Sunport on Sunday.   

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Extremist opinion writer Milo Yiannopoulos delivered a speech at New Mexico’s flagship university in Albuquerque on Friday just hours after President Trump issued an executive order on immigration and refugees. Yiannopoulos champions free speech, but several dissenters were escorted from his event by police.   

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

President Donald Trump signed an executive action on Tuesday approving the Dakota Access Pipeline, which water protectors have been working to stop for months. In Albuquerque on Wednesday, people gathered outside the tall Wells Fargo bank Downtown to try and stanch the flow of money to the project known as DAPL. 

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

As more than half a million people turned up to the Women’s March in D.C., here at home, demonstrators gathered around the state. In Albuquerque, hail and wind did not deter thousands from streaming into Civic Plaza Downtown, in what has to be one of the biggest women’s rights-centric events ever in New Mexico. The message was inclusive of civil rights, protections for immigrants, health care and more. The massive crowd was jubilant. 

Marisa Demarco/KUNM

In Downtown Albuquerque, street lights reflected off wet asphalt as a couple hundred nonviolent demonstrators called for political revolution. Their ranks swelled, and at first, there wasn’t a police officer in sight.

Anna Lande/KUNM

The sky was grey as scores of students at the University of New Mexico gathered today to protest the inauguration of President Donald Trump. Speakers took turns at a microphone, promising scrutiny and resistance to his administration. A handful of patriotic pro-Trump students turned up, too.

publicdomainpictures.net via CC

The day after Donald Trump is inaugurated as the United States’ 45th president, hundreds of thousands of people are expected to flood in from around the country to march through the nation’s capital. The mission of the Women’s March includes advocating for human rights and pushing back against bigotry toward immigrants, Muslims and people of color. 

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