News | Connecticut Public Radio
WNPR

News

Patrick Skahill / Connecticut Public

U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal gathered a coalition of postal workers and health care advocates outside a post office in downtown Hartford Tuesday to warn that disruptions to the U.S. Postal Service could threaten the November election. 

Report Offers Clues To What Went Wrong In Lethal COVID Outbreak In Nursing Homes

Aug 18, 2020
Some of the nursing staff at Parkway Pavilion Health and Rehabilitation Center in Enfield in the early stages of the outbreak.
CTMirror.org

COVID-19 hit nursing homes in the Northeast states particularly hard, but those living in Connecticut long-term care facilities died more frequently than in any other state – a result of missteps by the state and a nursing home industry hamstrung by limited knowledge of the pathogen’s nature, how it spreads and to whom it posed the greatest risks.

Diane Orson / Connecticut Public Radio

Lord & Taylor, Brooks Brothers, J. Crew -- even Ann Taylor, whose first store opened in 1954 on Chapel Street in New Haven -- are among dozens of once-storied retail clothing institutions that have filed for bankruptcy.     

Connecticut Public Radio’s Morning Edition host Diane Orson spoke with Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, senior associate dean and professor of management practice at the Yale School of Management, to learn more.  

face mask
Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

As office buildings and schools reopen, some adults 65 and older are forced to return to a work environment that carries a higher risk of exposure to COVID-19.

Gary Phelan, who practices employment law in Westport as part of Mitchell & Sheahan, P.C., said he’s seeing older teachers having to make tough choices: lose their jobs or return to a potentially risky classroom environment.   

Nicole Leonard / Connecticut Public Radio

The U.S. Department of Justice has ruled that Yale University illegally discriminates against Asian American and white applicants, in violation of federal civil rights law. For its part, Yale calls the allegation “meritless” and “hasty.” The case is similar to one brought against Harvard last year. That case was rejected by a federal judge. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public

The opaque world of energy policy continues to roil the surface of state government as regulators again have chastised the state’s two biggest utilities: Eversource and United Illuminating. This time, the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority fined both companies, alleging an “insufficient” rollout of a program called shared solar.

Bonnie-Brown / Creative Commons

When Jennifer Perez Caraballo decided to keep her 4-year-old child at home for the school year, she had a lot to think about, with two parents at home working full time, her own preexisting health conditions, and back-to-school plans from Hartford public schools that seemed unclear. 

Kin Mun Lee / Creative Commons

In July, New Haven Mayor Justin Elicker wrote an op-ed in which he suggests penalizing Connecticut towns that fail to meet the threshold of making 10% of their housing supply affordable. If they don’t comply, he said, they should be taxed.  

Health Care And Education Suffer When There's No Internet Access

Aug 16, 2020
Melanie Stengel / C-HIT

With no Wi-Fi or reliable internet access during the COVID-19 pandemic, Susana Encarnacion of New London had some trouble during doctors’ appointments for her 9-year-old son, Jeremiah, who has asthma and attention deficit disorder.

Yale University
Pixabay

The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division says Black and Latinx students with similar academic qualifications are being admitted to Yale at higher rates than white and Asian American students, pointing to discrimination and a violation of the Civil Rights Act. 

Lawyer David Hinojosa said the evidence leading to that conclusion is -- in his words -- “almost laughable.”

Jeremy L. Grisham /

At least two Connecticut studies and a federal report show that the percentage of health care workers and residents in the overall population who have been previously infected with COVID-19 remains small, despite ongoing cases and hospitalizations.

And the numbers don’t come close to achieving herd immunity, when disease transmission is minimal because most people in a community are protected after vaccination or previous infection. 

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public

It’s been three weeks since Major League Baseball’s Opening Day. Like other sports, teams have played in isolation and without fans. But they’ve taken steps to make the season feel normal, from canned crowd noise (like at this Red Sox game against the Mets) to cardboard cutouts of fans in the stadium.

Brenda Leon / Connecticut Public Radio

For the past five years, the Capitol Region Education Council, or CREC, has handed out about 1,200 book bags to Hartford public school students in preparation for the new school year, but this year the annual block party became a drive-thru.

Thomas Gilmer was running for the Republican Nomination for the Second Congressional District. He was arrested Monday night and dropped out of the race Tuesday.
Wethersfield Police Department

Thomas Gilmer is neck and neck with Justin Anderson in the Republican primary for Connecticut’s 2nd Congressional District. Though Gilmer dropped out of the contest Tuesday, the race appeared headed toward a recount as a final tally incorporating absentee ballots was underway Thursday.

Feds Accuse Yale Of Racial Discrimination In Admissions

Aug 13, 2020
Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

A Justice Department investigation has found Yale University is illegally discriminating against Asian American and white applicants, in violation of federal civil rights law, officials said Thursday. Yale denied the allegation, calling it “meritless” and “hasty.” 

As Veteran Suicide Grows, National Guard Highest In Active Military

Aug 13, 2020
Donna Chapman gives her son, Sergeant William Davidson a kiss. Davidson struggled with mental health disorders after his deployment in Afghanistan and killed himself in 2017.
Contributed Family Photo

Sergeant William Davidson had been struggling with mental health problems since his deployment to Afghanistan. When he didn’t attend at least one of his Connecticut National Guard drill weekends, the Guard declared him AWOL (absent without leave) and discharged him with a “bad paper” separation. Four months after his discharge, Davidson, 24, fatally shot himself.

Ben James / New England Public Media

When a peer says something you think is racist, ignorant or wrong, what do you do? Most people agree that staying silent is not a good idea. But do you talk to them privately or take them to task publicly? Known as call-out culture, some think public shaming is a way to further social justice and change. But not everyone agrees with that approach.

Pixabay.com

It's been a great summer for flowers. But it's a shame the hot temperatures forced many flowers to go by so quickly. To enjoy the flower season longer, cut some of your favorite annual, perennial and bulb flowers and arrange them in vases indoors. Before you run out and snip some blooms for the table, here are some tips.

glegorly/iStock / Thinkstock

Elogia More finished her final shift at the Aetna building in Hartford at 1:30 a.m. on March 19.  The next day, the cleaning company she spent the last four years working for sent a layoff notice.

Assistant City Clerk May Reed, center, hands off the absentee ballots from Tuesday to Head Moderator Kevin Arnold, left.
Ali Oshinskie / Connecticut Public Radio

The last absentee ballot dropped off on Tuesday arrived at the New Haven City Hall of Records by bike. With a minute to 8 p.m., the voter threw down her bike and practically dived at the ballot box as City Clerk Michael Smart came by to lock up.

A box of absentee ballots waits to be counted at the New Haven Hall of Records Tuesday night. Ballots postmarked by Tuesday and received by Thursday will be counted. But ballots put in the mail Tuesday may or may not arrive in time.
Ali Oshinskie / Connecticut Public Radio

Absentee ballots in the mail for this week’s primary elections have to be postmarked by Tuesday and delivered by Thursday to be counted. But some ballots postmarked on Tuesday may not have made it through the U.S. mail in time to reach municipal clerks’ offices by Thursday. The responsibility for timely ballots lies somewhere between the voter and the postal service.

Mark Ojakian Is Retiring As CSCU President

Aug 12, 2020
Mark Ojakian
Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

Mark E. Ojakian, the influential behind-the-scenes operative at the State Capitol who became the high-profile president of the troubled Connecticut State Colleges & Universities system in 2015, persisting in a job that defeated two academics, is retiring at year’s end.

Dave Wurtzel / Connecticut Public

Once a week outside a Newington nursing home, Peggy Johnson stands masked, 6 feet apart from her 94-year-old mom, imagining what it would be like to hug again. 

Henry Boulton, capacity monitor at a poll at Conard High School in West Hartford, gives an instruction to Elizabeth Davis who voted for the first time on Tuesday,
YEHYUN KIM / CTMirror.org

The top-line races were easy. Soon after the polls closed Tuesday night, the Associated Press declared Republican Donald J. Trump and Democrat Joe Biden winners of the year’s final presidential nomination contest, the twice-delayed Connecticut primary.

Joe Amon / Connecticut Public/NENC

A young man with his girlfriend stood in the shade under an awning at the side of an RV truck parked near Barnard Park in Hartford on a recent Tuesday morning. Holding a bag in one hand and reaching through an opening in a screened door with the other, he dropped empty, used syringes into a medical waste bucket.

“Eighty-eight, eighty-nine, ninety,” he counted, each needle making a thunk as it disappeared into bright red plastic. 

Courtesy: Norwich Public Utilities Facebook

With some in Connecticut just getting their power back one week after Tropical Storm Isaias, a lot of families have wondered aloud whether some other company could do a better job than Eversource and United Illuminating. One man who emphatically answers yes is Joe Courtney, the U.S. representative for Connecticut’s 2nd District. 

Ali Oshinskie / Connecticut Public Radio

Voters go to the polls today in an unusual election year. With over 300,000 absentee ballots requested for the primary elections, much of the voting has -- or should have -- already happened. But between delayed ballot mailing and postal service disruptions from Tropical Storm Isaias, many voters received their ballots late.

Nicole Leonard / Connecticut Public Radio

The former commissioner of the state Department of Public Health is firing back over her May termination ahead of an impending report this month on Connecticut’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Two months after Gov. Ned Lamont announced her dismissal, Renée Coleman-Mitchell said in a written statement released late Monday night by the law office of Eric R. Brown that she was going to “set the record straight in my own words.” 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public

The effort to clean up in Connecticut towns and cities continues, a week after Tropical Storm Isaias tore through the state -- leaving many to stew in the dark over the response from utility companies.

Connecticut Issues First Fines For Violating COVID Travel Advisory

Aug 10, 2020
Governor Ned Lamont
Cloe Poisson / CTMirror.org

Connecticut issued its first fines Monday for violations of the state’s requirements for travelers from COVID-19 hot spot states, making an example of two residents returning from Florida and Louisiana.

“We wanted to send a message loud and clear,” Gov. Ned Lamont said. “I hate to do it, but we’re going to be serious and show people we are serious about this, and to date it’s made a difference.”

Pages