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Hazlewood Act, Missing Persons, and Chris Field: Tuesday’s show (February 3, 2015)

The Hazlewood Act in Texas provides veterans (and some children of veterans) exemptions from some tuition and fee charges at public colleges and universities here. It’s awarded regardless of financial need. But historically, it has required the veteran to be a resident of Texas at enlistment. That wasn’t the case for Keith Harris. He enlisted before […]

The Hazlewood Act in Texas provides veterans (and some children of veterans) exemptions from some tuition and fee charges at public colleges and universities here. It’s awarded regardless of financial need. But historically, it has required the veteran to be a resident of Texas at enlistment.

That wasn’t the case for Keith Harris. He enlisted before moving to Texas in 2004. He sued, stipulating the law violates the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Last week, U.S. District Judge Ewing Werlein Jr. agreed.

On this edition of Houston Matters, we discuss how and why this is a Constitutional issue and what the repercussions might be of the judge’s ruling essentially expanding the tuition exemption to all veterans who establish residency in Texas, at any time before, during or after their military service. We welcome your questions for John Boerstler from the Lone Star Veterans Association, and Charles “Rocky” Rhodes, a Professor of Law at South Texas College of Law.

Also this hour: Today is Missing Persons Day in Houston. That proclamation from Mayor Parker is in commemoration of the 21st birthday of a missing Houstonian – Ali Lowitzer from Spring. We talk with Beth Alberts, CEO of the Texas Center for the Missing about Ali’s story, how many people go missing in Texas, and what steps can be taken to try to reduce the number.

Then: Monday on News 88.7 FM, we heard some of Syeda Hasan’s conversation with Stephen Klineberg about findings from the latest Kinder Institute research into attitudes among different races and ethnicities in Greater Houston. Among those findings: a majority of the black community here feels that there’s a bias against them in the criminal justice system. We hear Syeda Hasan’s expanded conversation about it with Dr. Klineberg.

Plus: Houston native Chris Field ran for mayor when he was a teenager. He founded the Bryan/College Station Marathon. Now, he works to rescue kids trafficked into labor in Ghana. Houston Matters’ Edel Howlin will talk with Field about what drives him to start non-profits and live a life slightly less ordinary.

Houston Matters gets underway today at noon on 88.7FM or listen online. Join the discussion at 713-440-8870, talk@houstonmatters.org or @HoustonMatters.

(Image Courtesy: Houston Chronicle)

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