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Standish is a city in the U.S. state of Michiganmarker. As of the 2000 census, the city population was 1,581. It is the county seat of Arenac Countymarker .

The town was platted by John D. Standish in 1871. Before the plat was formally recorded, Standish sold some of his land in the community and the town was initially named "Granton." Standish, who owned the town's first business (a sawmill), had the name the changed back. It was incorporated as a village in 1893 and a city in 1903. The Jackson and Lansing Railroad reached the community in 1871.

It is home to the Standish Maximum Correctional Facilitymarker. In 2009 the facility was being considered, along with the U.S.marker Disciplinary Barracksmarker in Fort Leavenworthmarker, Kansasmarker, as the United States site for more than 220 prisoners relocated from the Guantanamo Bay detention campmarker. Kansas public officials including both of its senators and governor have objected.
 However, opinions are mixed in Standish, where the unemployment rate is at 17%, with politicians welcoming the move, but most residents protesting the decision.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 2.1 square miles (5.5 km²).


As of the census of 2000, there were 1,581 people, 619 households, and 362 families residing in the city. The population density was 738.1 per square mile (285.2/km²). There were 672 housing units at an average density of 313.7/sq mi (121.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 96.52% White, 0.25% African American, 0.63% Native American, 0.89% Asian, 0.82% from other races, and 0.89% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.02% of the population.

There were 619 households out of which 32.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 39.4% were married couples living together, 14.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.4% were non-families. 37.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 20.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.36 and the average family size was 3.08.

In the city the population was spread out with 26.2% under the age of 18, 9.2% from 18 to 24, 27.5% from 25 to 44, 19.0% from 45 to 64, and 18.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 82.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 78.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $22,212, and the median income for a family was $31,719. Males had a median income of $28,523 versus $20,333 for females. The per capita income for the city was $13,608. About 16.4% of families and 19.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.5% of those under age 18 and 14.7% of those age 65 or over.


The city of Standish is in the Standish-Sterling Community Schools District. There are two elementary schools: Sterling Elementary located in Sterling, MI and Standish Elementary School in Standish. Standish-Sterling Middle School is now what was formerly Standish-Sterling High School, and a new high school, Standish-Sterling Central High School, opened in 2001.

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  2. Kansas senators threaten action over moving Guantanamo detainees to Leavenworth - Lawrence Journal-World - August 6, 2009
  3. Michigan's Standish Maximum Correctional Facility wants prisoners from Guantanamo Bay - Associated Press - New York Daily News - August 4, 2009
  4. Local Pols Welcome Gitmo Prisoners, Residents Say 'Not So Fast' - ABC News - August 14, 2009

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