Marshallese community

Courtesy / Catherine Andrew

A Springdale teacher has resigned after administrators were made aware of a video in which the teacher berates a student for acting like Marshallese students because he doesn't look the teacher in the face when the teacher is speaking. The district spokesman issued a statement saying the comments don't reflect the district's values. Marshallese advocates say the video indicates teachers need more cultural training.


Courtesy / ACOM

The nonprofit Arkansas Coalition of Marshallese is hosting  “Celebrating Women Through Health and Education,” an International Women’s Day event, on Mar. 27 from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Willie George Park in Springdale. A dawn vigil will be held to commemorate Marshallese community members impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, followed by various activities and speeches, as well as a food box giveaway to families in need.

POSTPONED: The event has been moved to Apr. 3 from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Courtesy / Marshallese Educational Initiative

Pacific Islanders, including thousands of Marshallese adults legally residing in Arkansas under a Compact of Free Association, are free to enroll in Medicaid. Congress restored the entitlement to COFA migrants last year after it was nullified in 1996 during welfare reform. Sen.

This month, the Walton Family Foundation hosted a virtual conference in tandem with the release of a five-year strategy for the foundation and its partners. One of the panels focused on diversity and inclusion as Northwest Arkansas continues to attract more people. On today's show, we hear from Benton County Judge Barry Moehring and Arkansas Coalition of Marshallese Executive Director Melisa Laelan.

Courtesy / Facing South

On Feb. 5th, Facing South published an article by Olivia Paschal titled "Emails show Tyson's sway over Arkansas mayor during COVID surge in plants." In it, Paschal lays out what she found after sorting through thousands of emails obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has awarded Ozark Guidance a $4 million expansion grant to develop a Certified Community Behavioral Health Clinic program over the next two years. The funds will be used for outreach and new services for underserved communities, such as the Latino and Marshallese populations, in Northwest Arkansas.

Courtesy / Venceremos

This week, a Democrat-led House panel launched a probe into coronavirus outbreaks at meatpacking plants around the country. On Monday, the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis sent letters to Tyson Foods, Smithfield Foods and JBS USA requesting information on the number of sick employees, facility closures, safety measures and leave policies for when workers tested positive.

Courtesy / Megan Godfrey

Rep. Megan Godfrey, D-District 89, has filed HB1342, also known as the Marshallese Law Enforcement Act. Currently, state law requires police officers to be U.S. citizens. If approved, the legislation would amend the law to include Marshallese residents who are in the country legally, but are not citizens.

Courtesy / ACOM

Nineteen Pacific Islander organizations in the U.S., including two in Arkansas — which successfully lobbied Congress to restore Medicaid benefits to their people late last year — held the first of two virtual press conferences last week to frame their struggle for civil rights and social justice under long-standing U.S. treaties.

Courtesy / Arkansas Story Vault

In the spring of 2020, five student interns at the David and Barbara Pryor Center for Arkansas Oral and Visual History began working on a series of short documentaries about the Marshallese community in Northwest Arkansas. Because of the pandemic, they had to alter their plans and produced a podcast instead. All six episodes of the Arkansas Atoll Podcast are available now.