Stateside: MI Iraqis face looming deportation; Theater Talk; making self-driving cars safer

Apr 9, 2019
Originally published on April 11, 2019 9:16 am

Today on Stateside, around 1,000 Iraqi nationals are in danger of deportation starting Tuesday after a federal appeals court decision ruled that Immigration and Customs Enforcement could move forward with trying to send them back to Iraq. Plus, we talk to a corrections officer a Jackson prison that has lost four officers to suicide in the past two years about how to better support prison staff who are grappling with mental health issues.

Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below. 

ACLU and Chaldean community react to potential deportation of Iraqi nationals 

  • Today is the day that the federal government could resume deporting Iraqis to their former homeland, even as advocates warn that going back to Iraq could be a death sentence. Miriam Aukerman is with the Michigan chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union. She explains what legal options are left for the nearly 1,000 Iraqis with final deportation orders.  
  • Martin Manna is the president of the Chaldean Community Foundation. He was in D.C. this week to meet with members of Congress and the Trump administration and discuss the issue. Manna details the dangers that Chaldean Christians, in particular, would face if they were deported back to Iraq.

Theater Talk: A steamy murder mystery, "Hunchback," and an Arthur Miller classic

  • Encore Michigan’s David Kiley joined us to talk about a crop of new productions on stage at theaters across southeast Michigan. Kiley talks about The Hunchback of Notre Dame at the Dio Dinner Theatre in Pinckney, Hansel and Gretel at the Detroit Opera House, and Arthur Miller’s All My Sons at the Purple Rose Theatre in Chelsea.

UM professor combines human, artificial intelligence to make autonomous vehicles safer

  • There’s an idealized image of a future where autonomous vehicles seamlessly zip us from point A to point B while we read a book or watch a movie. But there’s quite a bit of work to do before we realize that utopian vision, especially when it comes to safety. 
  • Walter Lasecki is an assistant professor of computer science and engineering at the University of Michigan. He discusses his work on a project that combines human and artificial intelligence in autonomous vehicles to make self-driving cars safer.

Jackson corrections officer talks about mental health toll of working in a prison

  • In the past two years, the Cotton Correctional Facility in Jackson has lost four correctional officers to suicide. Corrections officers across the state are hoping these tragic losses will bring attention to the pressures of working in prisons. 

  • Cary Johnson has been a corrections officer at the Cotton Correctional Facility since 1995. She joined Stateside to talk about the mental health toll that working in a prison can take on corrections officers, and what could be done to better support them. 

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