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Overcoming the Big Challenges ×
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NBC News

Perla Trevizo

Suzy Khimm

Mike Hixenbaugh

Lexi Churchill

19 September 2021

Houston, Texas, United States

Multi-Media

Over 3000 Words

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First responders usually have wide discretion over whether to force their way into a private home to respond to an emergency. One family's tragic carbon monoxide poisoning during Texas' severe winter weather in 2021 i...

KVUE-TV

Tony Plohetski

15 September 2021

Austin, Texas, United States

Broadcast TV News

5-15 Minutes

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After years of inaction on police-reform measures, Austin city leaders raced to restructure and cut resources from the city's police department after the 2020 nationwide social-justice protests followed close on the h...

The Guardian

Preeti Jha

14 September 2021

Bihar, India

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The Bihar, India, state government banned drinking and selling of alcohol in 2016 after women in the mostly rural state mounted protests blaming men's alcohol abuse for rampant violence against women. Hundreds of thou...

San Francisco Chronicle

Rachel Swan

7 September 2021

Oakland, California, United States

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Oakland Ceasefire's "delicate architecture" balancing law enforcement and community-based responses to gun violence, which seemed to have helped lower the city's gun violence by half since 2012, came crashing down dur...

Bloomberg Businessweek

Fola Akinnibi

2 September 2021

Cincinnati, Ohio, United States

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A 2002 agreement with the U.S. Justice Department made Cincinnati a model of police reform. After a series of controversial shootings of residents, police committed to a less harsh, more publicly accountable approach ...

Austin American-Statesman

Tony Plohetski

1 September 2021

Austin, Texas, United States

Multi-Media

Over 3000 Words

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The 2020 protests over abusive policing nationwide led to Austin city leaders' decision to be the first major city to make major cuts in their police budget. But these early and rapid "defund-the-police" measures, cut...

Reasons to be Cheerful

David Byrne

27 August 2021

China

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China’s path to officially eliminating malaria began in the 1950s when a scientist in a government-funded program discovered the ancient Chinese herb Wormwood had been used to treat symptoms for centuries and went on ...

The Washington Post

Gerrit De Vynck

Will Oremus

Elizabeth Dwoskin

24 August 2021

United States

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Vaccine Talk is a Facebook group for evidence-based discussion to help both pro- and anti-vaccine people wade through all of the conflicting, and oftentimes wrong, information about the COVID-19 vaccine. The group has...

The Columbus Dispatch

Yilun Cheng

23 August 2021

Whitehall, Ohio, United States

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Congress created the U visa program in 2000 to encourage undocumented immigrants to report crimes to the police and cooperate with investigations and prosecutions. The visa legalizes an immigrant's status, if certifie...

The News Minute

Cris

20 August 2021

Wayanad, Kerala, India

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Wayanad is the first district in Kerala to have vaccinated the entire adult population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine. Rather than waiting for people to make appointments, officials went door-to-door providing all...

IowaWatch

Lyle Muller

Pat Kinney

17 August 2021

Iowa, United States

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A few small towns in Iowa have seen an increase in their populations despite the opposite trend across the state. An investigation by IowaWatch of 58 towns showed the services and amenities that were common in those t...

Anchorage Daily News

Kyle Hopkins

11 August 2021

Alaska, United States

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Alaska put itself at the cutting edge of rape investigations in 2007 by passing a law requiring the collection of DNA samples from people arrested for a variety of crimes. The system is meant to aid in solving rapes, ...

Reveal

Eda Uzunlar

7 August 2021

Wyoming, United States

Illustrations

Under 800 Words

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Neighboring states of Wyoming and South Dakota take starkly different approaches toward youth who get in trouble. Side-by-side comic panels follow two real cases through each system. A South Dakota teen gets help that...

Eugene Weekly

Taylor Perse

5 August 2021

Cleveland, Ohio, United States

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Disaster preparedness in the form of close inter-agency coordination and communication helped Cuyahoga County, Ohio, protect its unhoused population from COVID-19 to a greater extent than Lane County, Oregon. Although...

Vogue

Emma Specter

5 August 2021

Lowell, Massachusetts, United States

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The Greater Lowell Health Alliance offered COVID-19 vaccines using a “block party” model where community members enjoy free food, music, activities, and even childcare, while also having access to information about va...

The Tributary (Jacksonville Journalism Collective)

Uriel J. García

3 August 2021

Jacksonville, Florida, United States

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A Florida constitutional amendment enacted in 2018 called Marsy's Law protects crime victims' rights, including the right to privacy when public-records laws would otherwise reveal victims' identity. But the Jacksonvi...

Better Government Association

Cecilia Reyes

Madison Hopkins

2 August 2021

Chicago, Illinois, United States

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Many cities have experienced tragic deaths in rental apartments, but Chicago's poor record in this realm is compounded by officials' refusal to concede systemic problems. So, to follow up on an earlier report about th...

The Washington Post

David Nakamura

2 August 2021

Seattle, Washington, United States

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Federal consent decrees install court-appointed monitors to oversee reforms agreed to by a police department and the U.S. Justice Department after federal officials have found a department violates people's civil righ...

KUNR

Natalie Van Hoozer

30 July 2021

Reno, Nevada, United States

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To increase vaccination rates among Reno’s Latino/a population, organizers conducted outreach with congregants at a local church that offers Spanish-language masses. Confidence in clinic locations and feeling safe due...

The New York Times

Emma Cott

Caroline Kim

Elie Khadra

29 July 2021

Sonoma, California, United States

Video

5-15 Minutes

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Prescribed burns are an ancient method of preventing more destructive, out-of-control wildfires. They fell into disuse for decades, worsening today's wildfire risks. California and federal forestry officials want to "...

Oregon Public Broadcasting (OPB)

Allison Frost

29 July 2021

Taiwan

Podcast

Over 15 Minutes

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Taiwan responded to COVID-19 quickly, which helped keep cases low and avoid widespread shutdowns. The country had closely tracked its PPE stockpiles since the 2003 SARS outbreak, has a national health command center t...

The Current

Ty Baniewicz

26 July 2021

Acadiana, Louisiana, United States

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Members of Asociación Cultural Latino-Acadiana and the Rotary Club of Lafayette North went door-to-door in neighborhoods that are home to Spanish-speaking households to find people eligible for COVID-19 vaccinations. ...

Knowable Magazine

Katarina Zimmer

22 July 2021

Guinea-Bissau

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Mangrove forests are known to be excellent storers of carbon and hosts of biodiversity, but they are also able to protect communities on coastlines from storm surge. However, many of the projects to restore these fore...

CalMatters

Robert Lewis

21 July 2021

California, United States

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Two decades ago, California became the first state to create a system to track and seize guns from people no longer legally permitted to possess a gun. Thousands of guns have been seized. But the database of gun owner...

The Kansas Leadership Center Journal (KLC Journal)

Stan Finger

20 July 2021

Kansas, United States

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When courthouses and in-person government meetings shut down because of COVID-19, officials satisfied Kansas’ open meeting mandate by using pandemic relief aid to equip buildings with the technology needed to live str...

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Photo Credits: Almudena Toral; Cody Pope; Matt Stokes; Kriston Bethel; Noah Friedman-Rudovsky

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