President Trump signs civil rights cold case law drafted by New Jersey students

Posted: Updated:
HIGHTSTOWN -

President Donald Trump recently signed a bill that will give the public access to Justice Department files covering more than 100 murders during the Civil Rights movement.

The bill was drafted by students of a government class at Hightstown High School – something that no other high school has ever done.

Teacher Stuart Wexler's students wrote and lobbied for a bill that passed both houses of Congress in December. President Trump signed the Civil Rights Cold Case Records Collection Act of 2018 last week.

Work on the bill began in 2015, after students say they were frustrated many of the federal records they requested on the cold cases were heavily redacted. Dozens of students helped draft the bill.

“I can still think back to when we were in elementary school and we were watching the Schoolhouse Rock videos of how does a bill turn into a law,” says senior Radhika Shah. “As a teenager without even having the right to vote, to get to be part of a legislative process that was successful, I think that's something that I will forever carry with me.”

The president said in a statement that his administration "considers civil rights cold case records to be a matter of public importance."

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