“A stain on the soul of our state:” Ex-Rep. Kiah Morris on racism, misogyny & her fight for justice

Kiah Morris was elected to the Vermont State Legislature from Bennington in 2014 and re-elected in 2016. She was the only female African-American Vermont state representative at that time. In September 2018, she resigned from the legislature in the wake of racist attacks from white nationalists. The shocking story of what happened to her was reported in the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, BBC and other news outlets. In January 2019, Vermont Attorney General TJ Donovan announced that he would not bring criminal charges against the man who was harassing Morris and her family, insisting that racially offensive speech was protected. Civil rights groups including the NAACP and Justice for All denounced the decision and the Vermont ACLU called for an investigation of the Bennington Police for its “systemic racism problem.” Morris has continued to speak out against racism and misogyny both locally and globally. She was recently part of an Oxfam America delegation to Central America where she met with survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Morris discusses her ongoing fight for justice. (December 11, 2019 broadcast)

Kiah Morris, former Vermont State Representative

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Trailblazers: Vt Sen. Becca Balint & Rep. Kiah Morris on #MeToo, activism and politics

Vermont Sen. Becca Balint and Rep. Kiah Morris are political trailblazers. Balint, the Senate Majority Leader, is one of the first women to be elected to Senate leadership and the highest ranking openly gay legislator in the state. Morris is just the second African American woman to serve in the Vermont legislature. In separate interviews, the two leaders talk about the “sea change” for women in politics in the wake of the #MeToo movement against sexual harassment, how they mix activism, advocacy and politics, and their personal journeys into politics. (January 3, 2018)

Vt. Senator Becca Balint, Windham County, Senate Majority Leader

 

Vt. Rep. Kiah Morris, Bennington