Michael Lacey and Jim Larkin are two journalists how have worked in the industry for many years. On October 18, 2007, they were arrested by Joe Arpaio who is the Sheriff of Maricopa County in Arizona. They were both arrested in the middle of the night and taken to jail because they had written a new article that talked about the proceedings of a grand jury trial.
The article that Michael and Jim were writing about involved Joe Arpaio. They were arrested so that their reporter notes could be discovered to see who they had talked to. Additionally, the subpoenas against them sought to find out the name of each person who had read their article online which had been published in New Times.
Both Lacey and Larkin sued Mariposa County over these events, eventually winning a $3.75 million settlement. They have both used these funds to help nonprofits across Arizona that are engaged in human and civil rights, including the rights of migrant workers.
Mike Lacey and Jim Larkin named their charitable foundation the Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund.
One of the nonprofits that the Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund provides money to is the American Civil Liberties Union of Arizona. This group is part of the national American Civil Liberties Union which provides a free defense in cases of civil rights abuses that occur far too often in the United States. Of particular emphasis is challenging Arizona laws that unfairly and illegally target minorities in the state.
Among their lawsuits is one against Sherrif Arpaio where he and his deputies targeted Latino drivers. The judge ultimately stopped Sherrif Arpaio from being involved in enforcing immigration and a court monitor was placed into his office in order to monitor is continued conduct.
Another nonprofit supported by the Lacey and Larkin Frontera Fund is the Center for Neighborhood Leadership. This organization provides an education and supportive environment to young people who are training to be leaders in their communities. These leaders go on to help working families in disadvantaged communities across the state.
One of their projects includes building vegetable gardens in area’s where people need help with providing food to their families. Another effort is putting teachers, parents, students, and board members together in order to help create safe schools. Learn more about Jim Larkin: http://www.laceyandlarkinfronterafund.org/about-lacey-larkin-frontera-fund/jim-larkin/
Among the other two dozen nonprofits they financially support is the Raúl Castro Institute which is named in honor of Arizona’s only Mexican-American governor. At age 96 he had been arrested in the state of Arizona because his pacemaker had caused a sensor to react. He was left out in 100-degree weather by Border Patrol agents which resulted in him asking for new policies in how they treat the elderly rather than his lodging an official complaint.
The organization named after him now seeks to develop policy issues that help Latino people in regards to their civil rights, health and human services, and their educational opportunities. They hold an annual Dare to Dream Conference which is designed to inspire junior high school students aspire to earning college degrees.