Isiah Holmes

Isiah Holmes

Isiah Holmes is a journalist and videographer, and a lifelong resident of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. His writing has been featured in Urban Milwaukee, Isthmus, Milwaukee Stories, Milwaukee Neighborhood News Services, Pontiac Tribune, the Progressive Magazine, Al Jazeera, and other outlets.

Kenosha residents, advocates react to removal of books from schools

By: - October 20, 2023

Kenosha Unified School District removed four books from school libraries this year, joining a nationwide debate about removing books from schools. The books, which focused on LGBTQ topics and characters, were purged for having “pornographic material,” one school board member explained on social media. While their removal satisfied some residents, others worry about the effects […]

A voting ward sign in Milwaukee County. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

Report: How Wisconsin’s criminal legal system robs Milwaukeeans of democracy

By: - October 19, 2023

A new report, “Still Not Free When They Come Home,” produced by the Center for Popular Democracy (CPD) and Black Leaders Organizing for Communities (BLOC), examines how Wisconsin’s criminal legal system harms access to democracy in the state’s largest Black communities. Compiled over the first half of 2023, it condemns Wisconsin’s legal system as “a […]

Activists gather outside of Green Bay's prison to rally. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

Wisconsin’s racial disparities among incarcerated people remain high

By: - October 2, 2023

Wisconsin continues to incarcerate its residents — especially African Americans — at rates far outpacing other states and even other countries. According to a new Prison Policy Initiative analysis, the Badger State locks up its Black residents, who make up just 6% of the state’s population, in state prisons at a rate of 11.8 times […]

A Milwaukee police squad in front of the Municipal Court downtown. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

Racial gap persists in Milwaukee PD’s use of stop and frisk practices, annual report states

By: - September 26, 2023

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Wisconsin is accusing the Milwaukee Police Department (MPD) of not complying with key provisions of a  five-year-old legal settlement that mandated an end to racial profiling stop and frisk practices in Milwaukee. Citing the latest annual report from the Crime and Justice Institute, which evaluates MPD’s compliance with […]

A Milwaukee County Sheriff vehicle parked below a bridge being crossed my protesters. (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

Is under-staffing really what’s wrong with Milwaukee’s County Jail?

By: - September 21, 2023

As questions have grown over conditions in the Milwaukee County Jail – where six people have died over the past 14 months – citizens have demanded an explanation for the continued deaths even as city and county leaders, including the county executive, mayor and sheriff have changed. The Milwaukee County Sheriff has blamed  staffing shortages […]

People gather for a March 31 event in New Orleans for Transgender Day of Visibility. | Photo courtesy Louisiana Illuminator

Could Milwaukee County become a sanctuary for LGBTQ people?

By: - September 13, 2023

A resolution declaring Milwaukee County’s support for transgender people passed the County Board’s Committee on Judiciary, Law Enforcement, and General Services on Monday. With pressure bearing down upon LGBTQ communities across the nation, the resolution aims to establish that Milwaukee County is a safe, welcoming community for LGBTQ people, including transgender residents. The meeting attracted […]

Protesters occupy the Milwaukee County Jail's main entrance in 2020. (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

Unrest in Milwaukee jail underscores chronic problems

By: - September 11, 2023

“When you get to a point where you can’t take no more, you go to the extreme to do what you got to do to literally draw attention,” says Sylvester Jackson, a Milwaukee-area activist who focuses on mass incarceration. Jackson was reflecting on recent charges against 27 people held within the Milwaukee County jail. Officials […]

Milwaukee People's Climate March. Photo by: Isiah Holmes

Climate-fueled heat wave isn’t done with Wisconsin

By: - September 5, 2023

Clark Evans, a meteorological professor at UW-Milwaukee, is impressed by the severity of the recent heat waves that have crept northward, part of a global trend of blistering temperatures. “Some of our hottest days here in Wisconsin tend to have relatively low humidity, relatively low dew points,” Evans told Wisconsin Examiner. “So it’s hot, but […]

Drug overdose and awareness information in Milwaukee. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

Rural Wisconsin towns get $1 million to combat overdose crisis

By: - August 31, 2023

Over $1 million in federal funds will help rural Wisconsin communities respond to an epidemic of drug overdoses. Each year over 100,000 people in the U.S. die of an overdose. In Wisconsin, over 9,500 Wisconsinites have lost their lives to an overdose from 2014-2021. The funds from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ […]

Protesters gather in Milwaukee to march on the Republican debates. (Photo | Isiah Holmes)

Protesters march during Republican debate

By: - August 24, 2023

Protesters took to the streets Wednesday evening in Milwaukee, speaking out against the first Republican presidential debate as it was being held at the downtown Fiserv Forum. Groups organized throughout the day, culminating in a gathering at Red Arrow Park, a block from Milwaukee city hall. The coalition of groups, including anti-war and pro-union organizers, […]

Anti-vote protest

Activists in Milwaukee brace for Republican debate, RNC

By: - August 23, 2023

On Wednesday evening, the city of Milwaukee will be the site of the first Republican presidential primary debate, one year before the city plays host to the  Republican National Convention (RNC). Hotel rooms downtown are filling, charging higher rates to accommodate the politicians, pundits and security teams that have been arriving ahead of the debate. […]

Waupun prison

Investigation highlights conditions at Waupun prison

By: - August 22, 2023

Conditions at the Waupun Correctional Institution (WCI), one of the Badger State’s several over-crowded prisons, have become intolerable for the nearly 1,000 people incarcerated there, according to a Wisconsin Watch investigation in partnership with the New York Times. Since prison officials began a lockdown four months ago, people held at Waupun – the state’s oldest […]