After news spread that Prince passed away, many celebrities paid homage to the legendary singer through special tributes. On Broadway, Jennifer Hudson and the cast of The Color Purple paid their respects through song by performing a rendition of Prince’s hit “Purple Rain.” Prior to that, Hudson shared words about the life and legacy of the singer. “I’m not a speaker by any means. I did not expect to have to speak on tonight, but God has his way. As we all know, today we lost a legend. Ooh, Jesus, we lost a legend who was a good friend of mine: Prince, who was dear to all of us. Every single one of us. He said his music will live on and he will live through his music so we want to keep him alive today with this song,” said Hudson. Although there was a somber tone following his unexpected death, director Spike Lee, who has collaborated with Prince in the past, hosted a celebratory tribute in Brooklyn. He hosted an unplanned block party that brought out over 1,000 people. During the block party, fans celebrated Prince’s life by singing and dancing to his most popular songs in the street. Read more.


Uber to Shell out $100M in Lawsuit Settlement

Uber has agreed to shell out nearly $100 million to settle lawsuits surrounding their labor policies. The company will also implement policy changes. The class-action lawsuits were initially filed because drivers wanted to work as independent contractors rather than becoming full-time employees. Under the settlement, the company will distribute $84 million to companies in California and Massachusetts, and an additional $16 million if the company goes public. The new policies will allow Uber drivers to have signs that say tips are not included and there will be a clearer line of communication with the company when it comes to termination. “We haven’t always done a good job working with drivers. It’s time to change,” said Uber CEO Travis Kalanick. “Drivers value their independence — the freedom to push a button rather than punch a clock, to use Uber and Lyft simultaneously, to drive most of the week or for just a few hours.” There are more than 450,000 drivers who currently work for the company. Read more.


Louisiana Bill Would Classify Felonies against Cops as Hate Crimes

A new proposed Louisiana bill would classify offenses committed against police officials as hate crimes. Under the plan, people who commit felonies against police officers and firefighters will serve up to five extra years in prison. “It shall be unlawful for any person to select the victim of the following 10 offenses against person and property because of actual or perceived race, age, gender, religion, color, creed, disability, sexual orientation, national origin, or ancestry of that person or the owner or occupant of that property or because of actual or perceived membership or service in, or employment with, an organization, or because of actual or perceived employment as a law enforcement officer or firefighter,” states the bill. Rep. Lance Harris believes that it’s essential for police and firefighters to be protected under the bill. “We have a pretty extensive hate crime law right now, but I believe we should add firefighters and policemen,” he said. Read more.

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty

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