Louis Aguilar

Louis Aguilar, a senior reporter for BridgeDetroit, has been writing about the epic nature of his native Detroit since 2004. Before joining BridgeDetroit in 2020, he was a business reporter and investigative reporter for The Detroit News. He is a former staff writer for The Washington Post, Denver Post, Westword (Denver’s alternative weekly) and Colorado Springs Gazette. You can reach him at laguilar@bridgedetroit.com.

Articles

Poll: 50 percent in Michigan back Black Lives Matter on police brutality

Poll: 50 percent in Michigan back Black Lives Matter on police brutality

August 11, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

A Michigan political poll found likely voters fairly split on Black Lives Matter efforts on police reform but the movement already is shaping debates in many areas of public life.

Detroit museum renowned for investing in Black art. Staff says it’s all show.

Detroit museum renowned for investing in Black art. Staff says it’s all show.

August 3, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

The Detroit Institute of Arts has made major strides in showcasing African-American art and in its outreach to Black Detroiters. Is that progress enough to withstand charges of institutional racism and a ‘toxic’ workplace?

In solidarity: Indigenous communities join Detroit’s Black Lives Matter movement

In solidarity: Indigenous communities join Detroit’s Black Lives Matter movement

July 16, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

In one powerful image, a Detroit photographer captures the moment of sweeping cultural change that is underway.

Detroit unemployment rate ‘alarmingly’ high amid coronavirus

Detroit unemployment rate ‘alarmingly’ high amid coronavirus

July 13, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

Federal monthly data and three economic surveys show that many Detroit workers aren’t returning to work at a rate higher than most of the state and nation. It’s too soon to gauge permanent job loss, a U-M survey contends.

Reaching out to black people to discuss race? There’s a good and bad way.

Reaching out to black people to discuss race? There’s a good and bad way.

June 11, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

Black Americans are noticing a new trend: Their white peers are starting to reach out as allies against racism. Checking in on a friend will probably be appreciated, but asking black people for resources to learn about systemic racism demands an emotional toll from someone who likely still is processing trauma.

Coronavirus pandemic slams Detroit economy, protesters want change

Coronavirus pandemic slams Detroit economy, protesters want change

June 5, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

Detroiters are experiencing the highest unemployment rates of the century. Millenials and Gen Z, hit hardest by massive unemployment, have looped economic relief into their demands against police brutality as protests in support of George Floyd continue.

Protests continue in Detroit more than a week after George Floyd’s death

Protests continue in Detroit more than a week after George Floyd’s death

June 3, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

The killing of George Floyd, a black man, by a white policeman in Minneapolis is the catalyst for nationwide protests in at least 150 cities, suburbs and small towns. Police brutality is only part of what draws Detroit protesters. Gen Z and Millennial organizers are advocating for something new.

Pain, strength and agitation underlie Detroit protests against police brutality

Pain, strength and agitation underlie Detroit protests against police brutality

May 30, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

What happened in Detroit and the streets of at least 35 other cities reflects the raw state of urban America. Months of dealing with a killer virus. Surging economic despair. Then another viral video emerged of a Black man killed while being arrested by a white policeman in Minneapolis.

Detroit population continues to decline, according to Census estimate

Detroit population continues to decline, according to Census estimate

May 21, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

The upcoming count will offer a better understanding of Detroit’s demographic changes but the state's largest city is grappling with a low response rate for Census 2020.

Diego, Frida, and my grandfather in Depression-era Detroit

Diego, Frida, and my grandfather in Depression-era Detroit

May 6, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

The author's grandfather, Antonio Martinez,  met the artists Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo in Depression-era Detroit.

Efforts across community begin to turn the coronavirus tide for Detroiters

Efforts across community begin to turn the coronavirus tide for Detroiters

May 5, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

The pandemic hit Detroit harder than most cities, but coordinated efforts have made a difference, and begun to pay off.

Detroit food banks overrun by coronavirus demand

Detroit food banks overrun by coronavirus demand

April 15, 2020 | Louis Aguilar

Despite adding capacity, food banks throughout Michigan are running out of food, crushed by the hunger created by the pandemic’s economic strain.

‘We need help’: Coronavirus ‘devastating’ black cities in outstate Michigan

‘We need help’: Coronavirus ‘devastating’ black cities in outstate Michigan

April 9, 2020 | Riley Beggin, Mike Wilkinson, Louis Aguilar

Racial disparities that struck southeast Michigan are repeating in Flint, Saginaw, Lansing and Ypsilanti, highlighting inequities in health care.  And even as Detroit cases ebb, the mourning is just beginning: ‘I just feel numb,’ one says.

Despite brutal day, signs of hope in Michigan’s coronavirus curve

Despite brutal day, signs of hope in Michigan’s coronavirus curve

April 7, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson, Louis Aguilar, Riley Beggin

COVID-19 cases spiked yet again statewide on Tuesday, but Detroit’s rate is beginning to slow — and Michigan’s curve is looking less like that of New York by the day.

Are lottery ticket sales next thing to go in Michigan amid coronavirus?

Are lottery ticket sales next thing to go in Michigan amid coronavirus?

April 3, 2020 | Riley Beggin, Louis Aguilar

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says she’s ‘taking a very serious look’ at halting the sale of lottery tickets in stores because people still aren’t getting the message about social distancing.

As coronavirus bears down, Detroit enters a grim new phase

As coronavirus bears down, Detroit enters a grim new phase

March 30, 2020 | Kelly House, Robin Erb, Riley Beggin, Louis Aguilar, Mike Wilkinson

In metro Detroit, the epicenter of Michigan’s outbreak, the pandemic is spreading rapidly as hospitals, government leaders and residents deal with medical shortages and some painful goodbyes.

White House worried about rapid spike in Detroit coronavirus cases

White House worried about rapid spike in Detroit coronavirus cases

March 26, 2020 | Louis Aguilar, Mike Wilkinson, Riley Beggin

The White House weighs in as Detroit reels from a spike in cases. The virus has struck a civil rights leader, state lawmaker and police officials, and health experts warn this is the beginning: ‘The people of the state are in serious risk,’ Mayor Duggan says.