Local News Archives

Agency For Children Gets New Service Dog

The Children’s Advocacy Center of Southwest Michigan has received a service dog. “Pawnee” is a 15-month-old female chocolate lab who came to the agency through the Canine Advocacy Program in collaboration with Leader Dogs for the Blind out of Rochester, Michigan. The Children’s Advocacy Center — or CAC — tells us Pawnee is a “career change dog” who was deemed not compatible with Leader Dogs for the Blind. She is trained to provide emotional support to people, and especially children. She will be used as a support animal in a therapeutic setting, and as a calming presence for children and adults in the community who are taking part in abuse prevention lessons offered by the CAC. Pawnee will also be able to work with clients during their court prep in the mock courtroom at the agency. Once at the courthouse, the children will be able to testify with the help of another CAC dog, known as Mr. Weeber. The Children’s Advocacy Center works with children who have been victims of sexual or severe physical abuse. It was established in 2002.. ...Read Full Story

SHAES: Stay Off The Ice

South Haven Area Emergency Services is warning everyone not to go out on Lake Michigan ice. The recent polar vortex has made for some stunning visuals along the lake, especially near lighthouses. SAES spotted some adventurers out on the ice taking in the lighthouse Friday, but says people should avoid the temptation. The agency says there’s open water beyond the ice flows and the predicted moderating temperatures this weekend will make the ice packs very unstable. As the U.S. Coast Guard’s Lazaro Lopez told us during an ice rescue training exercise last month…. ...Read Full Story

Immigration Forum Next Week In SJ

A forum on immigration will be held next week in St. Joseph. Organized by Interfaith Action, “Immigration-Facts, Faces, Fears, and Faith” will feature guest speakers with expertise on the immigration system, along with people who have been through that very system. Interfaith Action’s Sid Mohn tells WSJM News immigration is very much in the national spotlight right now, and the group wants to help the public understand more.. ...Read Full Story

$50,000 Grant For Children With Special Needs Fund

A $50,000 grant has been announced for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Children with Special Needs Fund. The grant comes from the Rollin M. Gerstacker Foundation, and the money will be awarded in two rounds this year. Michigan Department of Health and Human Services spokesperson Bob Wheaton tells WSJM News says the Children with Special Needs Fund provides equipment to families with special needs kids.. ...Read Full Story

Group Supports Paycheck Fairness Act

The proposition that women ought to make the same amount of money as men for the same job is back in the U.S. House of Representatives. The Paycheck Fairness Act was reintroduced on Wednesday and is backed by every Democrat in the chamber. House Resolution Seven would build on the Equal Pay Act of 1963 and the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which was signed into law ten years ago this week. Michele Leber, chair of the National Committee on Pay Equity, tells us one important provision would forbid companies from using a person’s salary history in employment decisions.. ...Read Full Story

School Districts Get Three Extra Snow Days

Students don’t have to worry about this week’s blast of severe weather pushing their school year into the summer. The Michigan Department of Education told districts this week they will get an extra three days of snow days, as many in the Lower Peninsula were closed all week. All school districts have enough time in the academic calendar for six snow days a year before days have to be tacked on to the end of the last semester. Interim state superintendent Sheila Alles also told districts that Governor Whitmer’s State of Emergency in Michigan doesn’t mandate schools have to close and that remains a local decision.. ...Read Full Story