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Public Health Leaders Vow Science, Not Politics, Will Guide COVID-19 Vaccine

Updated at 1:37 p.m. ET Amid criticism from Democrats that politics may be guiding decisions at the nation's top health agencies, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration told Congress on Wednesday that a coronavirus vaccine would not be approved until it met "vigorous expectations" for safety and effectiveness. "Decisions to authorize or approve any such vaccine or therapeutic will be made by the dedicated career staff at FDA through our thorough review processes, and science...

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Supreme Court

Ginsburg, Role Model And 'Rock Star,' Lies In Repose At Supreme Court

Updated at 11:01 a.m. ET Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is lying in repose at the U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday and Thursday, a two-day event honoring a justice who was both a cultural and legal icon. As Ginsburg's casket arrived at the high court, former law clerks lined the Supreme Court steps. Supreme Court police officers served as pallbearers. Then the justice's family, close friends and members of the court held a brief ceremony in the court's Great Hall. Rabbi Lauren Holtzblatt...

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Regional News

Shane Dillon attends his school in Springfield, Massachusetts, from home.
Christine Dillon

Student Mental Health Tops Concerns Among Western Mass. High School Teachers

Updated at 12:35 p.m. At the end of the first week of this log-in-from-your-bedroom school year, Shane Dillon said it isn’t bad — yet.

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Union officials are raising concerns that retail giant Amazon is unnecessarily exposing Connecticut residents to COVID-19 -- as well as taking jobs they believe should go to local workers.

State officials are stepping up pressure on school districts to resume in-person schooling as soon as possible this fall, even as they have signaled deference to local control.

Local authorities say the latest escalation poses a threat to months of detailed planning, and could force risky changes even after the school year has begun.

AJAY SURESH / CREATIVE COMMONS / FLICKR.COM/PHOTOS/AJAY_SURESH

A western Massachusetts group focused on opioid abuse is offering this week the first in a series of online trainings on administering an opioid overdose reversal drug.

U.S. Representative Richard Neal, at an event promoting participation in the U.S. Census, outside the Sergeant Kevin A. Dupont Memorial Middle School in Chicopee, Massachusetts, on September 18, 2020.
Alden Bourne / NEPR

Massachusetts U.S. Representative Richard Neal said he hopes the courts force the government to continue collecting information for the census.

A consumption advisory posted on the Housatonic River, in a file photo.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPM

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has turned down requests to give the public more time to comment on the agency's proposed cleanup of the Housatonic River.

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Election 2020

Step Aside Election 2000: This Year's Election May Be The Most Litigated Yet

The night of Nov. 7, 2000, was cold and wet in Austin, Texas. "Nobody cared," remembers Republican lawyer Ben Ginsberg, who worked for Texas Gov. George W. Bush's presidential campaign. "We had just won the presidency of the United States." That excitement quickly evaporated. As the night stretched on, the race between Bush and Democratic nominee Al Gore tightened in Florida. The television networks revised their projections for Bush, deeming the contest too close to call. Before the election...

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Criminal Justice

Gasping For Air: Autopsies Reveal Troubling Effects Of Lethal Injection

Dr. Joel Zivot stared at the autopsy reports. The language was dry and clinical, in stark contrast to the weight of what they contained — detailed, graphic accounts of the bodies of inmates executed by lethal injection in Georgia. It was 2016, and the autopsy reports had been given to him by lawyers representing inmates on death row. He had received simple instructions: Interpret the levels of an anesthetic in the blood to determine whether the inmates were conscious during their execution....

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"Nailed It" October 8th

Live from the Academy of Music

A new podcast for readers, writers, and anyone who ever loved their English class.

Colectivo De Medios Latinos

An all-Spanish resource on COVID-19 and more.

by Latino journalists in western Massachusetts.

Fridays on Morning Edition

NEPM Now

Our Commitment: Civil Dialogue, Context and Conversation

We are deeply saddened by the tragic events of the last several weeks which have shaken the Black community. The killings of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and too many other Black Americans have triggered national and international outrage and calls for systemic change. We once again see the bitter truths about racism, inequality, and injustice. This is a difficult time in our Nation’s history. Unlike many countries around the world which have experienced similar horrific...

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Follow the Journey of a Civil Rights Hero

Congressman and human rights champion John Lewis is featured in this 2017 documentary.

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For their daughters and themselves, Mustafa and BeckyJean Thompson said they're relieved there's now more structure to the West Springfield, Mass., online school day.
Jill Kaufman / NEPM

Working Parents Hope For More Structure This Fall For Kids At School — At Home

Most Massachusetts public schools began classes this week after a delay due to the coronavirus. Districts, independently of one another, developed their plans and many schools are teaching remotely. That means parents and caregivers are again juggling their work schedules while also acting as teacher helpers.

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