pandemic

pandemic

Top Story Weekly Briefing

The hard truth that no candidate of either party has the courage to speak anymore

To the relief of just about everyone – with the possible exception of advertising sales staff at the nation’s media companies – the 2022 midterms will soon be over. In just a few days, Americans are likely to know the answers to a host of momentous questions: Will the work that’s finally commenced to address the global environmental crisis proceed or stall?

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COVID-19 Health News Top Story

Study: More Republicans than Democrats likely died of COVID

It’s already known that hundreds of thousands of Americans would still be alive if every eligible person had gotten vaccinated against COVID-19. Now new research strongly suggests that many more of those “excess deaths” in Ohio and Florida were among people with Republican voter registrations. It’s perhaps unsurprising that Republicans were more reluctant to get vaccinated against the novel coronavirus, which has so far killed more than 1 million in the United States and more than 6.5 million worldwide.

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News Top Story

Monday numbers: Our children are hurting and here’s why

As parents busy themselves gathering last minute back-to-school items for their children, North Carolina's educators are prepping for what could be one of the most challenging years on record. Masks and social-distancing will be less common this year, but the pandemic has left an indelible mark on our children. A new report by the Annie E. Casey Foun­da­tion documents that children are strug­gling with anx­i­ety and depres­sion at unprece­dent­ed lev­els.

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Congress COVID-19 News Top Story

Biden tests positive for COVID-19

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden has tested positive for COVID-19 and is experiencing mild symptoms, the White House announced Thursday morning.  Biden, 79, is fully vaccinated against the virus and has twice received booster doses, according to the statement. He is taking Paxlovid, an antiviral prescription medication that is meant to reduce the severity of symptoms and the duration of illness.

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Education News Top Story

COVID cautions land NC family with truancy charge

Stanly County mom defends decision to temporarily homeschool son during spikes in the pandemic In January, when the COVID positivity rate climbed to nearly 40% in Stanly County, northeast of Charlotte, Morgan Perez made the tough call to keep her son Jaxon home from school.

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Education Top Story

State Board of Education hears sobering details of the pandemic’s impact on youth mental health

Trauma, depression, and suicide have spiked and a bill in the General Assembly could make things worse The pandemic has been unkind to America’s school children. Academically, K-12 students experienced significant learning loss while stuck at home during the height of the pandemic. The long-term impact of students falling behind in school keeps educators awake at night.

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Radio Interviews

Documentary producer Cristin Severance discusses WRAL-TV’s latest powerful documentary entitled “Pandemic Generation: Kids in Crisis”

WRAL’s documentary unit: Videographer Jay Jennings and producer/reporter Cristin Severance

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the U.S. Surgeon General declared a national state of emergency in children’s mental health with one in five young people experiencing anxiety or depression.

The latest WRAL Doc, Pandemic Generation, shines a light on the real, lasting impacts of remote learning, quarantine, and the uncertainty our kids endured these last two years. Watch the documentary here.

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Top Story

Do you need a second booster shot? An epidemiologist scoured the latest research and has some answers

In late March 2022, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized a second booster shot of COVID-19 vaccines for vulnerable populations in the U.S., a move that was soon after endorsed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. People ages 50 years and older and certain immunocompromised individuals who are at higher risk for severe disease, hospitalization and death are eligible four months after receiving the initial booster shot.

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Congress COVID-19 News Top Story

Congressional testimony: Alcohol use rates “staggering,” 40% of U.S. adults report experiencing anxiety or depression

Prior to the pandemic, one in 10 American adults reported experiencing symptoms of anxiety or depression. Over the past two years, that rate has skyrocketed to four in 10 adults — 40%. On Wednesday members of the powerful U.S. House Ways & Means Committee held its first hearing on mental health in more than a decade.

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COVID-19 Other Voices Progressive Voices Top Story

Only spreading Aloha: A journalist reflects on air travel and tourism in the pandemic era

Last month my wife and I did something that seemed unthinkable for the last two years. We traveled nearly 5,000 miles to spend a week in Honolulu, Hawai‘i. It was a trip we’d talked about since before the COVID-19 pandemic. We dreamed, we planned, we saved. But we postponed it repeatedly, then indefinitely, as the light at the end of the tunnel provided by vaccines and boosters dimmed...

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COVID-19 News Policy Watch Investigates Top Story

Legislatures across country back off pandemic protocols

Despite the explosive spread of the omicron variant, many statehouses are attempting to conduct business as usual As Dr. Jennifer Bacani McKenney walked the halls of the Kansas Statehouse on opening day of the legislative session this month, she was taken aback by what she saw. In the hallways, where "people are chatting and hugging and all that stuff, there were probably less than half of the people wearing masks...

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News Top Story

Fibs, fraud, and frustrations: North Carolina’s unemployment program draws more scrutiny

Claire Niver, a senior vice president with Pepsi Bottling Ventures, told legislators last week the global pandemic has had a “monumental impact” on the North Carolina-based company. Niver described in detail how the company hand-made 1,600 masks for frontline workers and created a partnership with Jim Beam so employees would have a ready supply of hand sanitizer when it was unavailable in most stores. "We had no layoffs and no furloughs. We are an essential business," Niver said proudly.

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News Top Story

Monday numbers: A closer look at the rapid and stunning growth of the super-rich

While the COVID-19 pandemic and the economic recession it spawned have taken a huge toll on low and middle-income people across the globe, most members of the very exclusive club frequently referred to as the “super-rich” have been doing just fine, thank you. In fact, a recent report prepared by veteran policy analyst Chuck Collins of the Institute for Policy Studies for the website Inequality.org, put it this way...

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Top Story Weekly Briefing

President Biden’s remarkable record of accomplishment under nearly impossible circumstances

It’s been almost 90 years since humorist Will Rogers uttered his famous lament: “I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat.” Sadly, for that party and, no doubt, quite amusingly for those otherwise affiliated, the observation would still hold were Rogers alive today.

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