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Section of Wyoming mountain highway collapses

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Section of Wyoming mountain highway collapses


JACKSON, WY (Associated Press) — A massive chunk of the meandering Teton Pass has collapsed, leaving a gaping dirt gash along the mountain pass that is a critical link between small eastern Idaho towns and the tourist destination of Jackson, Wyoming. The road was closed at the time the section of road fell away, authorities […]



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Wyoming

Court dismisses appeal of suit contesting transgender woman in Wyoming sorority

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Court dismisses appeal of suit contesting transgender woman in Wyoming sorority


DENVER (AP) — A federal court on Wednesday dismissed the appeal of a lawsuit that challenged a transgender woman’s acceptance into a sorority at the University of Wyoming, ruling it did not have jurisdiction to hear the case.

The lawsuit could not be appealed because a lower court judge in Wyoming left open the possibility of refiling it in his court, the three-judge U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver determined.

The case involving Artemis Langford, a transgender woman admitted into the Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority chapter in Laramie, drew widespread attention as transgender people fight for more acceptance in schools, athletics, workplaces and elsewhere, while others push back.

The sorority argued it had wide leeway to interpret its own bylaws, including defining who is a woman, but six sorority sisters argued in a lawsuit for a narrower interpretation.

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FILE – In this June 14, 2016, file photo, two people walk on the University of Wyoming campus in Laramie, Wyo. A University of Wyoming sorority challenged the admission of a transgender woman into their local chapter. (Shannon Broderick/Laramie Boomerang via AP, File)

Last summer, U.S. District Judge Alan Johnson in Cheyenne dismissed the case without prejudice in a ruling that suggested the lawsuit could be refiled in his court.

The appellate judges sided with sorority attorneys who argued the case was not ready for the appeals court. The question elicited the most discussion before the judges during oral arguments in May.

An attorney for the sorority sisters, May Mailman, declined to comment on the ruling. An attorney for the sorority, Natalie McLaughlin, did not return messages seeking comment.

The sorority sisters’ lawsuit against Kappa Kappa Gamma and its president, Mary Pat Rooney, claimed Langford made them feel uncomfortable in the sorority house. Langford was dropped from the lawsuit on appeal.

The arguments hearing drew a small demonstration outside a federal courthouse in Denver with women holding signs that read “Save Sisterhood” and “Women have the right to women’s only spaces.”

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Support Homeless Teens in Wyoming with the Unaccompanied Students Initiative 5k Fundraiser

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Support Homeless Teens in Wyoming with the Unaccompanied Students Initiative 5k Fundraiser


Help homeless teens in Wyoming by participating in the Unaccomanied Students Initiative (USI) statewide 5k.

The USI is a 501 c3 non-profit that helps provide a stable home for teens that live in a variety of unsafe, temporary situations including cars, parks, shelters, motels, and couch surfing.

The organization is a support system that allows youth to focus on obtaining their high school diploma or equivalent while teaching life skills, like resume writing, budgeting, goal setting, achievement, and personal advocating so that once they graduate they become productive members of society.

They have three active locations in Casper, Laramie, and Cheyenne. The 5K is being held in all three cities on Saturday, June 29 from 8:00 AM to 12:00 PM.

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In Casper it will start at Highland Park.

Registration is now open.

Program coordinator Brian Hoose says this is the first year they’ve organized a 5K. It is supposed to be their biggest fundraiser of the year.

“People don’t really think of homeless youth, they think traditional homeless people are on the streets, and you don’t usually see children. They’re kind of a hidden population and this is a way for people to be aware that they are out there” Hoose told K2 Radio News.

USI has put together data with the help of the public school districts to better understand the issue of homeless youth in the Cowboy State:

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2% of all Wyoming students enrolled in public school were identified as homeless.

1,703 public school students experienced homelessness over the course of the 2017-2018 school year.

4 in 10 extremely poor 6-17 year olds were identified as homeless in Wyoming.

81% of USI graduates had stable housing and a full time job or enrolled in school full time.

2024 Wyoming Association of Broadcasters Awards

Gallery Credit: Kolby Fedore

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Casper Family Expands ‘Babe & Ruthie’ Store

Gallery Credit: Kolby Fedore, TSM





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University of Wyoming dealing with state’s cuts to diversity office

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(Wyoming News Service) The University of Wyoming is scrambling to address a major funding cut state legislators passed in a footnote to the state budget.

During this year’s session, Wyoming lawmakers banned appropriation dollars from funding the University of Wyoming office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. The office has fostered inclusivity in race, sex, national origins and gender identity since its founding in 2017, providing resources for language assistance, Americans with disabilities, religious accommodations and more.

The University of Wyoming is not alone in facing such cuts. Since 2021, more than 150 bills have been brought to state legislatures aimed at academic freedom and university governance, according to a new paperfrom the American Association of University Professors.

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Isaac Kamola, associate professor of political science at Trinity College and director of the association’s Center for the Defense of Academic Freedom, said academic freedom is vital for higher education to serve the public interest.

“The teaching and research that takes place within those institutions has to be free from external pressures,” Kamola argued. “To ensure that what takes place in the classroom and in research, pursues truth wherever it leads, not where those with political and economic power wishes that it leads.”

Opponents of DEI initiatives said they lead to fear and resentment but Kamola noted the office closures are among several trending threats to higher education, including banning critical race theory, weakening tenure or accreditation and mandating content.

A working group provided suggestions to the University of Wyoming on how to proceed including continuing DEI funding through private support, under a changed name or reorganizing under a different university office. Kamola observed when Texas universities took a similar approach, they were told they were in violation and a round of layoffs followed.

“We can imagine that something similar might happen, where the political operatives that are behind these attacks on DEI will want to see blood in the water,” Kamola stressed.

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The working group’s report asserted the DEI office grounded its work in the Wyoming Constitution.



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