Social Justice Still Drives Howard University | Perry Stein, August 20, 2014

At the heart of Howard University is a social activist mission that continues to draw students to the private historically black school.  It is part of the university’s brand and is indispensable even in today’s post-segregation era.

How the Supreme Court Protects Bad Cops | Erwin Chemerinsky, August 26, 2014

Chemerinsky, a prominent scholar in United States constitutional law, takes a look at some recent rulings from the United States Supreme Court that has made it increasingly difficult for victims of prosecutorial misconduct or excessive use of force by police to find recourse or justice.

‘Poor Door’ in a New York Tower Opens a Fight Over Affordable Housing | Mireya Navarro, August 26, 2014

A new apartment complex in Manhattan with a segregated entrance for affordable units has brought out an outcry in New York City. But some housing advocates are split in outrage. Is it better to simply have affordable units in proximity to market rate condos or is the spirit of inclusionary zoning laws only achieved when the units are fully integrated into the rest of the development?

Can Cities Ease Homelessness With Storage Units? | Kriston Capps, August 25, 2014

A look out at how providing storage units for the homeless helps to bring stability and dignity to their lives. In 2007, DC passed a progressive law known as the Evictions With Dignity Act, which requires the city to pay for a tenant’s stuff to be moved to a storage unit for 90 days during an eviction instead of dumping a tenant’s belongings onto the street. Unfortunately, that provision was never funded.

Why Did Developer WC Smith Buy Up Most of Congress Heights? | Aaron Wiener, August 20, 2014

It’s not uncommon for a developer to go all-in for a neighborhood, but WC Smith’s domination of Congress Heights is different. It looks like the developers patient investments will finally start to pay off.

Metro Pays Nearly $5M to Settle Whistleblower Lawsuit |Martin Di Caro, August 25, 2014

The transit authority has agreed to pay nearly $5 million to settle a whistle-blower lawsuit that dealt with allegations that Metro awarded a $14 million no-bid contract to a Virginia firm. Looks like the region as a whole needs to reform its procurement practices and oversight.

This High-End Hair Stylist Gives Free Haircuts to the Homeless | Bryce Covert, August 22, 2014

Mark Bustos, who works for the high-end hair salon Three Squares Studio in New York City, spends his days off giving haircuts to homeless people who want them. What an awesome way to give back!

States With Medical Marijuana Have Fewer Painkiller Overdose Deaths | Olga Khazan, August 26, 2014

A new study suggests that in states where it’s legal, some people use pot to manage their chronic health conditions, rather than more addictive—and deadly—prescription opioids.

Generation Later, Poor Are Still Rare at Elite Colleges | Richard Perez-Pena, August 25, 2014

A series of federal surveys of selective colleges found virtually no change from the 1990s to 2012 in enrollment of students who are less well off, even though there was a huge increase over that time in the number of students going to college. “…Colleges are well intentioned but simply ineffectual in addressing economic diversity.”