Tag Archives: racine

Voces de la Frontera: We must now redouble our efforts

The immigrant rights group Voces de la Frontera announced a series of community forums throughout Wisconsin following the victory of Donald Trump, who has vowed to build a wall on the Mexican border, conduct mass deportations and institute a ban on certain types of people coming to America.

The first forum will be at St. Rafael Catholic Church, 2059 S. 33rd St., Milwaukee, at 1 p.m. on Nov. 13.

The second forum will be at the Racine Labor Center, 2100 Layard Ave., Racine, at 5 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 13.

Christine Neumann-Ortiz, executive director of Voces de la Frontera, issued this statement after the election:

“For 15 years, Voces de la Frontera has fought to defend immigrant workers and their families. With every organizing tool available, our community has ceaselessly protected itself from the same xenophobia that has now risen to power in the government. We’ve done it through marches, rallies, civil disobedience, lawsuits, building electoral power and more. With Trump’s election, we must now redouble our efforts.”

She continued, “The immigrant rights movement is resilient, militant and rooted in working class identity. Our movement has broad experience mobilizing strikes, walkouts, boycotts, and economic action when political action has not been possible, as we did in Wisconsin when we defeated anti-immigrant state legislation earlier this year by organizing a Day Without Latinxs and Immigrants. If we see any movement to erode what our movement has won, like DACA, we will do whatever is needed to protect it. We are committed to organizing nationally with our networks and broadening the struggle to include other groups of workers and people who have been threatened by Trump.

“Trump’s message of fear and division unfortuantely resonated with white blue collar voters, who have suffered economic hardship similar to African Americans and Latinos. In the decimation of union organization, they don’t feel there’s a voice for them. But I do not believe that the majority of those people represent the worst elements of the Trump camaign – the far-right, white supremacist ideology we’ve seen. I think that most Trump voters want the same things that people of color want and need. And the promise they hoped to see in Trump will be betrayed, because he never ran on a platform that supported working people.”

The day after the election, Voces de la Frontera held a news conference where members spoke about how they are responding to Trump’s victory.

“I’m scared,” said Valeria Ruiz, 20, a DACA beneficiary from Racine. “From one day to another, my future, my 9-year-old sister’s future and that of more than 9 million undocumented immigrants in this country, is suddenly less certain. It’s terrifying. But we will do what we’ve always done – unite and fight.”

“I have a beautiful family,” said Lola Flores, an undocumented mother of four and Voces de la Frontera member from Waukesha. “Today my daughter called me from her middle school and told me that her Latino classmates were crying. It’s heartbreaking. But I will never stop fighting for the future of my children.”


 

La elección de Trump significa que tenemos que defendernos sin descansar

MILWAUKEE, WI – Después de la elección de Donald Trump como Presidente, Voces de la Frontera anunció una serie de foros comunitarios a en el estado de Wisconsin. El primer foro será en la Iglesia Católica San Rafael (2059 S 33rd St en Milwaukee) a la 1pm el domingo 13 de noviembre (más información aquí). El segundo foro será en Racine Labor Center (2100 Layard Ave en Racine) a las 5pm el domingo, 13 de noviembre (más información aquí).

En respuesta a los resultados electorales, Voces de la Frontera publicó la siguiente declaración:

“Por 15 años, Voces de la Frontera ha luchado para defender a los trabajadores inmigrantes y sus familias,” dijo Christine Neumann-Ortiz, Directora Ejecutiva de Voces de la Frontera. “Con todas las herramientas de organizar disponibles, nuestra comunidad se ha protegido sin cesar de la misma xenofobia que ahora () ha subido al poder de los Estados Unidos al gobierno. Lo hemos hecho a través de marchas, manifestaciones, desobediencia civil, luchas, representación del poder electoral y más. Ahora, tenemos que redoblar nuestros esfuerzos.

“Nuestro movimiento tiene una amplia experiencia movilizando huelgas, boicots y la acciones económicas cuando la acción política no ha sido posible, como lo hicimos en Wisconsin cuando derrotamos a las propuestas de ley anti-inmigrantes anteriormente este año al organizar un Día sin Latinxs e Inmigrantes. “Este movimiento basado en los derechos de los inmigrantes es resistente, militante y basado con la identificación de la clase trabajadora. Si vemos que cualquier de nuestros esfuerzos están siendo amenazados para ser elimanados, como DACA, vamos a hacer lo que sea necesario para protegerlos. Estamos comprometidos a organizar a través de nuestros redes nacionales y ampliaremos nuestra lucha para incluir a otros grupos de trabajadores y personas amenazadas por Trump.

“El mensaje de miedo y división de Trump resonó con los trabajadores blancos, que han sufrido dificultades económicas similares a los afroamericanos y a los latinos. Con la decadencia de las uniones, no sienten que hay una voz para ellos. Pero yo no creo que la mayoría de esas personas representan a los peores elementos de la campaña de Trump – la ideología de la extrema derecha, la supremacía blanca que hemos visto. Pienso que la mayoría de los votantes por Trump quieren las mismas cosas que la gente de color quiere y necesita. Sus esperanzas en Trump serán traicionadas, porque Trump nunca creó en una plataforma que apoyaba a la gente trabajadora.”

El miércoles, Voces de la Frontera tuvo una conferencia de prensa donde unos miembros de la organización hablaron sobre cómo están respondiendo a la victoria de Trump.

“Tengo miedo,” dijo Valeria Ruiz, de 20 años, una beneficiaria de DACA de Racine.”De un día para otro, mi futuro, el futuro de mi hermana de 9 años y el futuro de de más de 11 millones inmigrantes indocumentados en este país es de repente menos seguro. Es aterrador, pero haremos lo que siempre hemos hecho: unirnos y luchar.”

“Tengo una hermosa familia,” dijo Lola Flores, una madre indocumentada de cuatro hijos y miembra de Voces de la Frontera de Waukesha. “Hoy mi hija me llamó de su escuela media y me dijo que sus compañeros de clase latinos estaban llorando. Es desgarrador, pero nunca dejaré de luchar por el futuro de mis hijos.”

Racine nonprofit builds tiny houses for local veterans

To those unfamiliar with the “tiny house” movement, the small structure being constructed in a barn in rural Racine County might look more like a kid’s clubhouse than an actual home in the making.

Take a look at the building through the eyes of Jeff Gustin, however, and it’s easy to see the 128-square-foot house as the perfect solution to eliminating veteran homelessness in Racine.

A demonstration model, the home is being built by volunteers of Veterans Outreach of Wisconsin, The Journal Times reported.

Once completed it will be used to help the nonprofit raise enough funds to create a total of 15 tiny houses — homes that will soon become a part of a “veterans village” for unhoused vets in the city of Racine.

Giving a quick tour of the unfinished model last week, Gustin, the executive director of Veterans Outreach, explained what each home will feature.

“Up here you will have a lofted bed, and beneath it a couch. There will be a desk here in the corner with an outlet. You can put a microwave here and little refrigerator, and over there would be the composting toilet,” he explained.

The tiny houses will not have running water, but a community building in the center of the village would have bathrooms with shower facilities and flush toilets. The center also is where homeless vets could go for free meals, camaraderie, drug and alcohol addiction counseling and veterans’ services.

The nonprofit has yet to officially secure a site for the village, but it is looking at a property near Uptown.

 

Curbing homelessness

Dedicated to curbing veteran homelessness, Veterans Outreach was founded in December 2013. Today, it runs a food pantry that serves 30 to 40 veterans a week. And in 2015, the furniture warehouse it maintains helped furnish the homes of 225 veterans.

Gustin said he other members of the nonprofit started thinking about creating a village of tiny houses for homeless vets last year, after hearing about similar developments for the homeless in cities such as Madison and Seattle.

“For some people, it’s hard to envision living in a space this small. They might wonder how they could fit all their clothes inside. These are people recovering from homelessness. They are going to be coming in here with a duffel bag,” said Gustin, whose son is a combat veteran.

In order to live in the village, a veteran could not have a dishonorable discharge, nor any sex-crime convictions on his or her record. They also cannot be homeless because they choose to be homeless, Gustin said.

The veterans would enroll in a two-year program, after which they would secure their own permanent housing.

“We want to ensure they have broken the cycle,” Gustin said. “The goal is to get them stabilized.”

 

A village for vets

To make the village a reality, Gustin estimates Veterans Outreach will need to raise about $125,000. That money would include the cost to construct all 15 houses, as well as money needed for the community building and site acquisition.

The plan would be to build the homes in three phases, with five homes being built during each phase. The hope would be that much of the labor and materials would be donated. The nonprofit has already received donations from Van’s Electric and Bliffert Lumber, and Gustin recently learned that Racine Habitat for Humanity might be constructing one of the houses this May.

Gustin said his hope to have at least the first phase completed before the snow flies this fall.

“I don’t want to find out in November that there is a veteran sleeping on the streets and it’s below freezing,” he said.

 

City hall help

Mayor John Dickert, who has been helping the nonprofit with its efforts, said he sees the project as being something that could help the city reach its goal of having zero homeless veterans.

“We are very, very close (to reaching that goal). The problem is we are finding we have a lot of transitional veterans and they are not being assessed because they are moving around,” Dickert said.

By providing transitional housing to the homeless veterans that end up in Racine, Veterans Outreach can help those veterans get the assessments they need, he said.

“The credit goes to these guys who are working this project,” Dickert said. “Three years ago, President Barack Obama asked us to end homelessness among veterans, and they have been working non-stop to do that.”

 

An AP member exchange feature.

 

Madison achieves perfect score on LGBT equality in national survey

The Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBT civil rights organization, on Dec. 17 released its third annual report assessing LGBT equality in 408 cities across the nation, including five in Wisconsin. Madison earned a 100 percent or perfect score.

The 2015 Municipal Equality Index is the only nationwide rating system of LGBT inclusion in municipal law and policy.

The average score for cities in Wisconsin is 60 out of 100 points, which falls above the national average of 56.

The scores in Wisconsin are:

Green Bay: 42.

Kenosha: 38.

Madison: 100.

Milwaukee: 82.

Racine: 41.  

Key findings contained in the MEI, issued in partnership with the Equality Federation, provide a revealing snapshot of LGBT equality in 408 municipalities of varying sizes, and from every state in the nation.

The cities researched for the 2015 MEI include the 50 state capitals, the 200 most populous cities in the country, the five largest cities in every state, the city home to the state’s two largest public universities, and an equal mix of 75 of the nation’s large, mid-size and small municipalities with the highest proportion of same-sex couples.

Forty-seven cities earned perfect 100-point scores, up from 38 in 2014, 25 in 2013 and 11 in 2012, the first year of the MEI.

This year’s MEI marks the largest number of 100-point scores in its history. 

Other findings contained in the 2015 MEI:

  • Cities in all regions of the country earned excellent scores, demonstrating that commitment to LGBT equality is not confined to parts of the country many people assume are most LGBT friendly;

  • 47 cities received perfect scores, even with this year’s more demanding criteria; that’s up from 38 in 2014, 25 in 2013 and 11 in 2012;

  • Cities continue to excel even without depending on state law: of cities that scored a perfect 100, 19 are in states that don’t have a statewide non-discrimination law; that’s up from 15 cities last year, eight cities in 2013, and just two in 2012;

  • 32 million people now live in cities that have more comprehensive, transgender inclusive non-discrimination laws than their state or the federal government;

  • The average city score was 56 points, with half of the cities researched scoring over 61 points. Eleven percent scored 100 points; 25 percent scored over 77 points; 25 percent scored under 31 points; and five percent scored fewer than 10 points.

  • Cities with a higher proportion of same-sex couples tended, not surprisingly, to score better, and the presence of openly-LGBT city officials and LGBT police liaisons also were correlated with higher scores.
     

The MEI rates cities based on 41 criteria falling under five broad categories:

  • Non-discrimination laws.

  • Municipality’s employment policies, including transgender-inclusive insurance coverage, contracting non-discrimination requirements, and other policies relating to equal treatment of LGBT city employees.

  • Inclusiveness of city services.

  • Law enforcement.

  • Municipal leadership on matters of equality.

Racine man accused of going into home to remove Confederate flag

Authorities say a Racine man was arrested after forcing his way inside a home to take down a Confederate flag placed in a window.

The Journal Times of Racine reports 37-year-old Tajaun Boatner has been charged on counts including criminal trespassing and misdemeanor theft.

A criminal complaint says a woman and Boatner told police he had politely asked her to remove the flag from her kitchen window, and she moved it to another window.

According to the complaint, both started yelling, and the woman used a racial slur toward Boatner. Authorities say Boatner pushed the woman down and walked into the house to remove the flag. According to authorities, Boatner later argued with police and struggled to avoid being handcuffed.

A message seeking comment was sent to an attorney listed as representing Boatner.

June unemployment rate rises in 27 of state’s 32 largest cities

Unemployment rates for June increased in most Wisconsin cities and counties.

The state Department of Workforce Development reported yesterday that unemployment rates increased in 27 out of the state’s largest 32 cities last month. Racine was hit the worst, with its unemployment rate rising to 7.6 percent, up from 7.4 percent in May. Milwaukee’s unemployment rate was the second highest at 7.4 percent, up from 6.9 percent the month before.

Unemployment rates also rose in 51 of the state’s 72 counties. Menominee County’s unemployment rate was the highest at 11.1 percent, followed by Iron County at 9.2 percent.

Madison and Dane County had the lowest unemployment rates for both a city and county at 3.5 percent.

The local unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted and therefore not comparable to the state unemployment rate, which was 4.6 percent in June.

One of Gov. Scott Walker’s chief boasts on the presidential campaign trail is the state’s unemployment rate, which is lower than the national average. But most voters know that the unemployment rate is an unreliable indicator of economic health, because it doesn’t take into account people who’ve stopped trying to find work or those who’ve found lower-paying or part-time jobs.

Walker’s record on the economy, however, leaves him with nothing positive to tout. During his first term, he promised to help the state create 250,000 new jobs, but the state achieved only about half of that number. Wisconsin has continually lagged the nation in job creation, sometimes ranking dead last under Walker’s management.

According to U.S. Census figures, Wisconsin has the nation’s fastest-shrinking middle class. 

June unemployment rate rises in 27 of state’s 32 largest cities

0 0 1 271 1400 Wisconsin Gazette 25 11 1660 14.0 Normal 0 false false false EN-US JA X-NONE /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:”Table Normal”; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-parent:””; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:12.0pt; font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-font-family:Cambria; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Cambria; mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;}

Unemployment rates for June increased in most Wisconsin cities and counties.

The state Department of Workforce Development reported yesterday that unemployment rates increased in 27 out of the state’s largest 32 cities last month. Racine was hit the worst, with its unemployment rate rising to 7.6 percent, up from 7.4 percent in May. Milwaukee’s unemployment rate was the second highest at 7.4 percent, up from 6.9 percent the month before.

Unemployment rates also rose in 51 of the state’s 72 counties. Menominee County’s unemployment rate was the highest at 11.1 percent, followed by Iron County at 9.2 percent.

Madison and Dane County had the lowest unemployment rates for both a city and county at 3.5 percent.

The local unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted and therefore not comparable to the state unemployment rate, which was 4.6 percent in June.

One of Gov. Scott Walker’s chief boasts on the presidential campaign trail is the state’s unemployment rate, which is lower than the national average. But most voters know that the unemployment rate is an unreliable indicator of economic health, because it doesn’t take into account people who’ve stopped trying to find work or those who’ve found lower-paying or part-time jobs.

Walker’s record on the economy, however, leaves him with nothing positive to tout. During his first term, he promised to help the state create 250,000 new jobs, but the state achieved only about half of that number. Wisconsin has continually lagged the nation in job creation, sometimes ranking dead last under Walker’s management.

According to U.S. Census figures, Wisconsin has the nation’s fastest-shrinking middle class. 


Scott Walker’s voucher plan could cost public schools an additional $48 million

Public school districts could face an additional $48 million hit over the next two years under the voucher program included in Gov. Scott Walker’s proposed budget, according to a new memo from state financial analysts.

A Legislative Fiscal Bureau memo obtained by The Associated Press provides new details about Walker’s proposal to lift the 1,000-student statewide cap on voucher participation and create a program similar to open enrollment.

Under the plan, any public school student could apply for a voucher. Private school students enrolling in kindergarten, first grade or ninth grade would also be eligible.

Similar to open enrollment, students would receive funding from their district of residence to attend a voucher school under the proposal. The memo sets out that voucher students in kindergarten through 8th grade would receive $7,210, and high school students would receive $7,856.

Public school districts currently pay $6,635 for each student who moves via open enrollment to another public district.

More than 3,540 students applied this year to receive a taxpayer-funded voucher to attend private and religious schools in the third year of the statewide program, more than triple the enrollment cap of 1,000, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction said in a recent report. That number is up 4 percent from last year.

State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, requested the memo. His spokeswoman didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.

Voucher supporters say the program gives students in struggling public schools an opportunity to offset the cost of attending a private school.

Jim Bender, president of the group School Choice Wisconsin, said public school districts already pay to have students who move via open enrollment in other public school districts. He said applying additional payments for voucher students wouldn’t add much more to each district’s budget.

“It doesn’t seem to be causing any heartache when students go between public schools,” Bender said.

Opponents, primarily Democrats and public school advocates, say the program isn’t accountable to taxpayers and is part of a broader agenda to defund public education.

Betsy Kippers, president of the Wisconsin Education Association Council, a statewide teachers union, said the state should support its public schools so students across the state have access to quality education.

“This week it was announced that 86 percent of voucher applicants for next year don’t even go to public school now,” Kippers said in a statement, referring to DPI’s report. “Meanwhile, public school students have fewer teachers and less one-on-one attention.”

The voucher program began in Milwaukee in 1990, the first city in the country to offer the taxpayer subsidies to help poor children leave struggling schools. Since 2011, Walker and the Republican-controlled Legislature have expanded it.

Walker and Republicans created a voucher program in Racine, eliminated enrollment caps there and in Milwaukee and raised income limits to allow middle-class students to participate.

The number of students applying from public schools decreased from 633 last year to 526 this year, a difference of 107.

All applicants in the statewide program, whether they attend public or private schools, must meet income requirements. A single parent with three children can earn up to $44,828 per year. For a married couple with two children, the cutoff is $53,310 annually.

To qualify in Racine, an applicant’s family income must be less than 300 percent of the federal poverty level. That equates to $71,637 for a family of four.

Nuns on the Bus to get out the vote in Racine

Nuns On the Bus will be in Racine on Election Day to support the students of YES — Youth Empowered in the Struggle — as they “Get Out the Vote” of underrepresented communities and encourage support for the school maintenance and repair referendum in the Racine Unified School District.

The annual YES event mobilizes hundreds of students and adults in a mass community voter drive.

The nuns will be at the Labor Center in Racine from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 pm., according to a news release from YES and Voces de la Frontera.

The nuns will be greeted by local Racine Dominican Sisters and will meet with students. They will share in a group lunch while the students take a break from their day-long effort of going door-to-door in the inner city encouraging voters in the lowest voter turnout wards to come to the polls and support the school referendum.

Chardonay Wingfield, a senior at Walden III High School and a team captain for the YES Get Out the Vote, said, “I will be knocking on doors on Election Day because I know how important it is to speak out about what matters. We have to get others to vote in the name of those who fought for that right, so their struggle was not in vain.” She wants the public schools referendum to pass because “Even as a high school senior, I want to see repairs to my schools so that the generation after me can benefit.”

Nuns on the Bus drew national attention in 2012 as they travelled across the country elevating compassion for the poor in our federal budget, immigration rights and access to health care for all, according to a statement from the group.

U.S. Conference of Mayors backs minimizing barriers to naturalization

The U.S. Conference of Mayors has voted this week to overwhelmingly pass a resolution urging U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and U.S. Department of Homeland Security to make policy changes that will increase the number of U.S. citizens from the pool of eligible lawful permanent residents.

The resolution emphasizes that it is in the interest of the federal government, especially USCIS, to minimize barriers to naturalization by reducing fees for citizenship applicants and “offering alternatives like a sliding-scale income based approach or family unit fee.”

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti introduced the resolution, which was co-sponsored by New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake, Portland Mayor Charlie Hales and St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay.

The measure passed with the support of Wisconsin mayors Tom Barrett and John Dickert.

“Our country has always been a country of immigrants,” said Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett. “I stand with other mayors in support of this resolution which urges the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and U.S. Department of Homeland Security to make policy changes that will increase the number of U.S. Citizens in our cities. It is important to Milwaukee families, in particular to Hispanic Families, and respectful of people who contribute to our economy.”

Racine Mayor John Dickert said, “It’s time we set aside the rhetoric and pass immigration reform.

The National Partnership for New Americans, of which Milwaukee-based Voces de la Frontera is a member, applauded the resolution and has been calling for the reduction in the cost of U.S. citizenship for millions of eligible New Americans for over three years.

“Wisconsin has 90,000 lawful permanent residents, and we should ensure that each of them have full opportunity to achieve their dreams of citizenship,” said Freya Neumann-Ortiz, citizenship coordinator for Voces de la Frontera. “This resolution is a great step forward in recognizing the hopes and needs of these New Americans.”

Since January 2012, NPNA has helped 29,560 immigrants across the country become U.S. citizens, saving $36,240,320 in legal fees and fee waivers. Each N‐400 application fee is $680 and legal fees, on average, cost each applicant $1,000.

A 2013 report released by NPNA and the Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration found that high naturalization fees have priced out hardworking immigrants who wish to become citizens. The report shows that the citizenship fee has nearly tripled from $225 in 1999 to $680 in 2008. As fees have risen, applicants with less than a high school diploma have plummeted by more than half while there are 40 percent fewer Mexican immigrants applying for citizenship. In both cases, over half of these declines have occurred since a huge fee increase in 2007.

Frank Lloyd Wright tower in Racine opening for public tours

Frank Lloyd Wright fans will get their first look at one of his most unusual buildings, an industrial tower with a tree-like design, when a home products company opens its former research and development center to the public this spring.

The 15-story tower at SC Johnson’s headquarters in southeastern Wisconsin is regarded as one of the country’s most important examples of cantilevered architecture. The first floor looks like a tree trunk, with second and higher floors springing off the core like branches.

The design may have helped inspire SC Johnson scientists. Within eight years of its 1950 opening, they developed four of the company’s most successful products – Raid bug killer, Glade air freshener, Off insect repellant and Pledge furniture polish. “They really felt like they were in a creative environment,” said Gregory Anderegg, the company’s global community affairs director.

Wright described the 16-million-pound structure as having a “taproot” design, with a circular core supporting its entire weight.

The building is divided into seven levels, each with a square main floor and a round mezzanine above it. Scientists could shout to each other through the open space and send tools or supplies up or down with a dumbwaiter. The outer walls are made up of glass tubes that let in natural light while blocking out the industrial landscape that surrounded the building when it opened.

Sean Malone, CEO and president of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation, described the tower as an “iconic building” and one of the 20th century’s great works of architecture.

Scientists were still working in the tower when Anderegg started with SC Johnson in 1979. They moved out three years later when the company opened a new research and development center nearby. The facility then sat mostly empty until this year when SC Johnson finished a five-year, $30 million renovation of the research tower and adjacent administration center, also designed by Wright. Both buildings will be included on free tours beginning May 2.

H.F. Johnson Jr., the third generation of his family to lead the company, hired Wright to build the administration center in the 1930s. The architect’s career was in a lull following a scandalous love affair in which he left his wife for a family friend. The SC Johnson project and Fallingwater, the groundbreaking home built for a prominent Pittsburgh family about the same time, brought him back into the limelight, where he remained until his death, Malone said.

The administration center that opened in 1939 introduced open-floor-plan offices, with employees seated in a single great room. Pillars that are 21 feet tall (6.4 meters) support the roof. That allowed Wright to use glass tubing for exterior walls and bathe the room in natural light. He carried the idea over to the research tower and installed 60 miles (96 kilometers) of glass tubes between the two buildings.

The architect described the great room as a “corporate cathedral” and designed the research center as its bell tower, Anderegg said.

As in his other buildings, Wright also designed the furnishings, including three-legged chairs that had be to converted to four legs to stop workers from toppling over when they reached for something on their desks.

SC Johnson rescued equipment and supplies from storage to arrange the research tower as it was in its heyday. Visitors to the complex also can take in a new art exhibit focused on Frank Lloyd Wright’s homes in Spring Green, Wis., and Scottsdale, Ariz. The exhibit done in partnership with the Milwaukee Art Museum and Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation includes nearly a half-hour of the architect’s home movies.

The SC Johnson buildings help to create a Wright corridor that stretches from the Chicago area to southwestern Wisconsin, Malone said. Travelers can see Wright’s home and studio as well as the celebrated Unity Temple in Oak Park, Ill.; visit SC Johnson headquarters and Wingspread, the residence Wright designed for the Johnson family, in Racine, Wis.; and then head west to Taliesin in Spring Green, where the architect moved after leaving Chicago. Additional Wright buildings can be found along the way in Milwaukee and the Wisconsin capital of Madison.

On the Web…

HTTP://WWW.SCJOHNSON.COM/VISIT 

Chick-fil-A seeks to open restaurant in Madison

Chick-fil-A, the Bible Belt-based fast-food chain whose charitable wing funneled millions of dollars to organizations working to demonize gays and lesbians, is seeking city approval to open an outlet in Madison’s West Town Mall at 423 S. Gammon Road.The company was scheduled to present its plans to Madison’s Urban Design Commission today.

Chick-fil-A’s red-bricked façades are a common sight throughout the Southern states. But Racine is the only Wisconsin city where a Chick-fil-A has opened.

The rapidly expanding company has its sites set on Wisconsin, however, with other projects scheduled in Brookfield at 12575 W. Capitol Ave., and in Greendale at an undisclosed location later this year. Those two Milwaukee suburbs are bastions of right-wing activism.

But Madison, the state’s most liberal city, seems an odd choice for the controversial fast-food giant, which is famous for serving breasts of factory-farmed chickens on a bun and for remaining closed on Sundays so that its employees can attend church.

In 2012, LGBT people and their allies boycotted the chain and staged protests at several sites after chief operating officer Dan Cathy made remarks condemning same-sex couples. That opposition made Cathy and Chick-fil-A heroes of the evangelical Christians who want to halt same-sex marriages and re-criminalize homosexuality. The company’s sales soared — and continue to do so.

But when Chicago and Boston denied permits for the privately held company to build restaurants in those cities, Cathy agreed to stop making official donations to hate groups and organizations with anti-gay missions. Such contributions from WinShape Foundation, the company’s charitable arm, ended soon afterward. But due to the nearly impossible task of tracing bundled contributions to astroturf political action committees, donations made by the Cathy family are shielded from public view.

So far, there has been no organized effort to stop Chick-fil-A’s expansion plans in Wisconsin, including in Madison.