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As Congressional Panel Focuses On Black Lung, UMW Urges Stronger Health Protections


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As Congress hears testimony on the epidemic of black lung disease among Appalachian miners, two labor leaders are calling on Congress and regulators to do more to protect miners. In a letter to the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration, or MSHA, the United Mine Workers of America and the United Steel Workers of America urged… Read More

Country Closures: Rural Communities Adapt As More Hospitals Shut Down

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Carey Ellis grew up just a few houses away from the Owen County Hospital in Owenton, Kentucky, so he knows the essential role a rural hospital plays in a small town. Ellis is Judge Executive of Owen County, a job his grandfather and great-grandfather had before him. So he also knows how hard it is… Read More

Coal Companies Belonging To WV Gov. Justice’s Family Agree To Pay Overdue Taxes In KY

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Coal companies controlled by the family of West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice have agreed to a settlement covering millions of dollars in overdue property taxes in four eastern Kentucky counties: Harlan, Knott, Magoffin, and Pike. Checks totaling $1.2 million from Justice entities began rolling in last week, county officials said. According to state officials, the… Read More

As Calls For Action On Black Lung Disease Grow, Regulators Show Little Indication Of Change

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Harold Sturgill was disabled by black lung disease when he was 58 years old. Now he advocates for disabled miners. “When it comes to the mining companies, and it comes to the worker, it’s still all about production,” Sturgill said. “They could care less about me, how much dust I suck in, or how long… Read More

Federal Prosecutors Say WV Gov. Justice Responsible For Fines Against Family Company

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Federal prosecutors on Tuesday said they will seek a court ruling to hold West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice and his son, Jay Justice, personally accountable for a $1.23 million civil fine imposed on one of the family’s coal businesses, Justice Energy Company, Inc. In a court filing, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of West… Read More

Kentucky Center Among The First Certified By American Society Of Addiction Medicine

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A Louisville treatment center is among the first programs in the nation to be certified by the American Society of Addiction Medicine. The Volunteers of America Mid-States’ Freedom House serves women with substance use disorder and who are also pregnant or have young children. Freedom House was included in the first phase of a pilot program… Read More

Powering Down: Ohio Community Reckons With Coal Plant Closure

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Brick buildings line the wide sidewalks of Main Street in downtown Coshocton, Ohio. On a recent spring day the dogwood trees are blooming. Bright red and white tulips dot the grassy public square, home to the local courthouse and a gazebo. There are barber shops, an optometrist, a florist, a railroad-themed steakhouse is open for… Read More

Working Toward Recovery: Ohio Town Fights Addiction With Focus On Economy

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This is the second story in an occasional series exploring the links between addiction recovery and a recovering economy. Addiction specialists, business leaders, law enforcement officials and other community members gathered around tables at Shawnee State University to talk about two big challenges in Scioto County, Ohio: a shrinking economy and a growing addiction crisis. The Appalachian… Read More

A Growing Recovery: Food Service And Farming Jobs Provide A Path Out Of Addiction

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This is the first story in an occasional series exploring the links between addiction recovery and a recovering economy. It’s lunch hour, and Cafe Appalachia is bustling. Located in South Charleston, West Virginia, the former church turned restaurant has a funky, yet calming vibe. Twinkle lights and mismatched dining room sets dot the space. For… Read More

Congressional Leaders Seek Investigation Into Russian Investment In KY Aluminum Mill

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A group of Congressional leaders asked the Trump administration to review a Russian company’s investment in a new Kentucky aluminum mill. The request comes from eight prominent Democratic lawmakers with leadership roles in committees with oversight, banking and national security responsibilities, including Ohio Sen.Sherrod Brown and House Intelligence Committee Chair Rep. Adam Schiff. The lawmakers… Read More