Support for cannabis grows; labor trafficking in WI alleged; glyphosate use growing on Midwest farm fields
Of note: This week we highlight the latest installment in The Cannabis Question, a series that explores possible legalization of marijuana for medicinal or recreational use in Wisconsin. This story, reported by University of Wisconsin-Madison student Hibah Ansari, features state Rep. Melissa Sargent, whose quest for full legalization in the state is gaining converts among the public and some members of the Democratic Party while Republican Party leaders remain mostly opposed.
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Lawmaker’s ‘lonely ship’ filling up as support for legalizing cannabis grows
Wisconsin Watch — May 26, 2019
Polls and referenda show Wisconsinites are warming to the idea of legalizing marijuana for medical or recreational use. But not everyone is on board. Just one-third of solidly Republican respondents favored legalization in a recent poll, compared to 59% of the public as a whole. When it comes to Democrats, though, 79% support legalization.
Victims of human trafficking in Wisconsin described threats, dangerous job conditions, exploitation
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel — May 29, 2019
Mexican farm workers allegedly forced to work in Wisconsin as part of a Georgia-based human-trafficking scheme had to pay hundreds of dollars to recruiters to get their jobs, according to a document filed by federal prosecutors in the case. The document includes summaries of interviews with 14 workers. Some employees were required to turn over land deeds as collateral and told they could lose their family’s property in Mexico if they refused to work.
Controversial pesticide use sees dramatic increase across the Midwest
Investigate Midwest — May 26, 2019
Farmers have been using the weed killer glyphosate – a key ingredient of the product Roundup – at soaring levels even as glyphosate has become increasingly less effective and as health concerns and lawsuits mount. A review of federal data by the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting shows that farmers across the Midwest used an estimated 188.7 million pounds of glyphosate in 2016 – nearly 40 times more than in 1992. Earlier from Wisconsin Watch: Strict pesticide rules fail to erase threat to Wisconsin’s drinking water
The ‘Harvey Weinstein of the WI National Guard:’ Records show WI National Guard rehired unit leader who allegedly sexually assaulted soldiers
The Cap Times — May 29, 2019
A high-ranking unit leader in the Wisconsin Army National Guard allegedly sexually assaulted a soldier and was later rehired by the Guard as a private civilian contractor, according to emails between the soldier and former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch’s office obtained by the Cap Times.
EPA curbs use of 12 bee-harming pesticides
Bloomberg Environment — May 21, 2019
The Environmental Protection Agency has canceled registration of a dozen pesticides from a class of chemicals known to harm bees. “Today’s cancellation of these neonicotinoid pesticides is a hard-won battle and landmark step in the right direction,” said George Kimbrell, legal director at the Center for Food Safety, which litigated the case. Previously from Wisconsin Watch: Critics: State’s plan to save bees provides little protection from pesticides
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