4/20/2020 8:34pm

Durham Public Schools volunteers help distribute food at the Southern School of Energy and Sustainability. Durham FEAST distributes free breakfast and lunch prepared by Durham restaurants to 24 pickup sites nearly every weekday, according to a news release. Photo courtesy of Durham Public Schools.

Durham Public Schools resumes feeding program after coronavirus-related shutdown

More than 60 percent of the district’s students receive free or reduced-price lunches, he said. That’s why Durham Public Schools launched a daily meal support program on March 23 after closing schools a week before. For two weeks, district employees distributed meals to students at 81 sites across the county.  But on April 6, the district stopped the program after an on-site employee tested positive for COVID-19 and most of its staff applied for state emergency paid leave through April 30. 

4/16/2020 9:34pm

The Lumbee Tribe's tribal government office, pictured here on Thursday, April 16, 2020, is located in Pembroke, North Carolina. The Lumbee Tribe is a state-recognized tribe in North Carolina numbering approximately 60,000 enrolled members. Most of them live primarily Robeson County.  

Natural gas plant construction causes concerns for Native American landowners

Piedmont Natural Gas aims to connect a 685-acre development site to existing natural gas infrastructure via pipelines. Many of the affected landowners, however, are affiliated with tribes such as the Lumbee Tribe or the Tuscarora Nation and have deep familial and cultural ties to the land.  One landowner said Piedmont has dismissed his concerns about the pipeline's effects on his property, while other activists have raised concerns about its effects on the health of those who live nearby.

4/15/2020 9:07pm

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Data shows African Americans might be more affected by COVID-19 than other groups

A recent report released by the CDC implicated underlying conditions as being the main culprit for many COVID-19 deaths and also that African Americans made up a large number of hospitalizations. While local data is inconclusive for the moment, it does raise questions about how race and health are intertwined. “We cannot refer to these high rates of chronic disease without mentioning that African American communities also typically experience poverty, food deserts, gentrification, red-lining and environmental and systemic institutional racism at higher rates as well,” Kristin Prelipp, communications manager at the Orange County Health Department, said.

4/13/2020 8:55pm

Earlier this year, Bridge the Gap Mission of the Urban Ministries of Wake County brought lunch and hats for the people they help. Photo courtesy of Carrie Pitts-Densmore.

Social assistance organizations in the Triangle refocus efforts amid COVID-19 outbreak

As individuals in the Triangle experiencing homelessness navigate increased unemployment and widespread closures during the COVID-19 outbreak, the organizations that serve them are working to respond — all while following social distancing guidelines. These groups are grappling with how to provide housing and services to those who need it most, and they know need isn't going to slow down any time soon. “For many of us, this time is a matter of staying at home and missing out on certain activities,”  Stephani Kilpatrick, residential services director at the Inter-Faith Council for Social Service,  said. “But for IFC’s members, it could mean that basic needs are not met.” 

4/9/2020 10:25pm

Traffic on the corner of East Franklin Street and North Columbia street leaves trails of light on Sunday, Oct. 6, 2019.

Are stay-at-home orders really reducing pollution in the Triangle?

Unlike other areas in the U.S. and around the world, the Triangle has not yet seen a significant change in its air quality as residents have been ordered to stay at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Experts say that residents will experience health benefits from having less pollution regardless.

4/9/2020 7:03pm

Chapel Ridge Apartments is an off-campus apartment complex where many UNC students live.

Students struggle to pay rent and negotiate leases due to economic impact of COVID-19

As the pandemic continues, it is becoming harder for students to keep up with housing payments. Some students have tried renegotiating their leases, but not all landlords have been willing to cooperate. Legal experts said landlords have different levels of flexibility, and may be unable to reduce rent or waive fees. However, they still encouraged students to discuss any issues with their landlords.

4/8/2020 10:20pm

Gov. Roy Cooper visited Chapel Hill on Tuesday, Nov. 19 2019 to announce that Well Dot, Inc, a health technology company will base its new operations center in the town and create 400 jobs.

N.C. experiencing a vast increase in unemployment insurance claims due to COVID-19

North Carolina is ranked second in the country for greatest percent increase in coronavirus-related unemployment insurance claims. Findings from WalletHub revealed that North Carolina saw an increase of over 6,000 percent in the number of unemployment insurance claims the week of March 23, 2020 when compared with that of the same week last year. With new legislation passed by Gov. Roy Cooper and new measures implemented by the Division of Employment Security, the state plans to accommodate the enormous financial strain and the needs of both individuals and employers occurring at this time.