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Serving Those Who Served: Veterans Pantry Program Reaches Out To Hungry

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Napoleon famously said that an army marches on its stomach; troops must be fed in order to fight. But what happens when that army faces hunger after marching back home? Federal statistics show tens of thousands of U.S. military veterans struggle with homelessness, hunger and food insecurity. As the holiday season approaches, a pilot program… Read More

Gutting Guest Worker Rights: Migrant Labor Bill Cuts Protections

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Roberto Gonzales and six other workers came from Nayarit, Mexico, to work on a Garrard County, Kentucky, tobacco farm using a guest worker program called the H-2A visa. The Department of Labor program guarantees a wage in Kentucky of $10.92 an hour. But Gonzales said the workers were only getting between $3 and $8 per hour…. Read More

Controversial Mine Safety Nominee Faces Final Vote

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A Senate vote is scheduled for Wednesday on confirmation for President Trump’s nominee to lead the Mine Safety and Health Administration, or MSHA. The country’s top mine safety position has been vacant since January as coal mining fatalities have risen to a two-year high. Trump’s choice to fill the post is facing opposition from congressional Democrats and… Read More

Carbon Capture Reconsidered: Big-Ticket Climate Fix Gets a Fresh Look

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A bipartisan group in Congress, including several Ohio Valley lawmakers, is pushing for more federal support for technology known as carbon capture and storage. The lawmakers and an uncommon alliance of labor, business, and environmental groups want to pass legislation called the FUTURE Act which would speed commercial deployment of technology that reduces carbon dioxide emissions from… Read More

Addiction U: Schools Form Research Consortium On Opioid Epidemic

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At a conference last year on the region’s opioid crisis, journalist Sam Quinones presented a call to action to Northern Kentucky University. Quinones is author of the influential book on the opioid crisis, “Dreamland,” and a tireless speaker on the topic. At conferences and other events in the Ohio Valley he frequently makes a plea: create… Read More

Striking Migrant Farm Workers Win Settlement

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After about three weeks on strike, a group of migrant workers employed at a tobacco farm in Gerrard County, Kentucky have reached a settlement with the farm’s owner. The workers came from Mexico under the H2A visa program, which allows foreign nationals to enter the U.S. for temporary or seasonal farm work. The Department of Labor… Read More

Tobacco’s Toll: New Push To Stop Smoking In Country’s Sickest States

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Hundreds of kids scurrying to buses are oblivious to a sign above them declaring Bourbon County High School “100 percent Tobacco Free.” But upstairs in the library, sophomore and anti-smoking advocate Jacob Steward unfurls a six-foot scroll with earth-toned papers trapped between clear sheets of laminate. He begins reading the anti-smoking slogans he’ll post around… Read More

A BOOn From Bats: Naturalists Aim To Help Bats Fight Deadly Disease

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Bats have a bit of an image problem. You probably saw some Halloween decorations this week featuring flying, fanged creatures of the night. But conservationists say bats are actually very helpful animals, saving farmers in the Ohio Valley region alone hundreds of millions of dollars simply by eating harmful insects. Now bats need some humans… Read More

Opioid Emergency: How Trump’s Plan Will — And Won’t — Help The Ohio Valley

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As bad as the opioid epidemic is across the nation, it is even worse here in the Ohio Valley. Kentucky, Ohio and West Virginia collectively have a rate of opioid-related deaths that is more than twice the national average. Last year 5,306 people died from opioid overdoses in the three states — 15 deaths a… Read More

Trumps Cite Ohio Valley Experience In Opioid Emergency Plan

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President Donald Trump outlined on Thursday his long-awaited plan to address the opioid crisis as a national public health emergency. Part of that plan was based on experiences in the Ohio Valley region. In an address at the White House Thursday both President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump mentioned efforts in the Ohio Valley region to… Read More