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Saturday, March 2, 2024

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As Congress and presidential candidates trade accusations over immigration reform, advocates and experts urge caution in spreading misinformation; Alabama takes new action IVF policy following controversial court decision; and central states urge caution with wildfires brewing.

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Congress reaches a deal to avoid a partial government shutdown again. Arizona Republicans want to ensure Trump remains on their state ballot and Senate Democrats reintroduce the John Lewis Voting Rights Act.

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Hard times could be ahead for rural school districts that spent federal pandemic money on teacher salaries, a former Oregon lumber community drafts a climate-action plan and West Virginians may soon buy raw milk from squeaky-clean cows.

Tennessee

More than 131,000 Tennesseans have already cast their ballots during early voting. (rawpixel/Adobe Stock)

Monday, February 26, 2024

New Tennessee law could lead to voter confusion at the polls

As municipal elections in Tennessee fast approach, groups are making an urgent push for more voter education - especially in the Nashville metro area…

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Regaining voting rights has been shown to reduce recidivism rates, meaning more Tennesseans would<br />be able to reenter their communities, work, and earn money to pay off their debts. (rawpixel.com/Adobe Stock)
Report: TN voting-rights restoration process 'overly complicated'

In Tennessee, almost a half million people won't be able to vote in any upcoming elections because of a past felony conviction, and one organization …

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Bryce Shanklin, a Williamson County career rural mail carrier, unloads the U.S. Postal Service vehicle he uses for delivering mail. (Jeremy Woodard)
Calls for increased rural Postal Service staffing grow louder

Across the country, and especially in rural parts of Tennessee, U.S. Postal Service staffing shortages are being blamed by some for delays in mail …

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Hispanic adults have made the most progress in attainment in Tennessee, with an increase of 12.6 percentage points from 2009 to 2022. (Drobot Dean/Adobe Stock)
Report: TN could do more to help improve degrees, certificates attainment

New data show how many people pursue degrees or other credentials after high school, and the numbers show the Volunteer State has some work to do to …

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Y12 annually hosts female high school students as part of a program called
Lawsuit probes EPA decision in allowing Oak Ridge landfill

Environmental groups in Tennessee will soon learn more about the approval process behind a radioactive waste landfill which has been processing and st…

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Every dollar spent on SNAP generates between $1.50 and $1.80 in local economic activity. For Tennessee, that is a total expected economic impact of up to $140 million from Summer EBT benefits. (NDABCREATIVITY/Adobe Stock)
Summer EBT food program estimated to help 644,000 kids

One in eight Tennesseans who have experienced hunger is a child. The Volunteer State is tackling childhood hunger this summer by opting into the new …

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The Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy estimates a state-level, fully refundable Child Tax Credit of $1,300 for those younger than 18, and $1,560 for children younger than 6, would cut Tennessee's child poverty rate by 25%. (Halfpoint/Adobe Stock)
State of Child report: One in five children younger than 5 lives in poverty

Tennessee's "State of the Child" 2023 report shows some progress, but also highlights ongoing areas of concern. From the Tennessee Commission on …

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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency expects by the autumn of 2024 to develop national recommended ambient water quality criteria for PFAS to protect aquatic life and human health. (Eifel Kreutz/Adobe Stock)
Report: PFAS chemicals contaminate TN rivers, lakes

The latest research reveals alarming levels of contamination in northeastern Tennessee waterways, by the chemicals known as per- and polyfluoroalkyl …

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Donors have the opportunity to contribute a full blood donation every 56 days, which is roughly equivalent to eight weeks. (Belish/AdobeStock)
Group urges Tennesseans to donate blood amid critical shortage

Blood donations are important year-round, and January, which is National Blood Donor Month, presents a unique challenge due to the holiday season…

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In 2019, Black Americans represented 14% of the total U.S. population, but 33% of the total prison population and 46% of the prison population who had already served at least 10 years. (Framestock/Adobe Stock)
Report cites racial disparity in imprisonment

Tennessee's incarceration rates stand out internationally, and there are glaring racial disparities in prisons and jails. New research examines the …

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The latest America's Health Rankings report showed some strengths in Tennessee, including a low prevalence of excessive drinking, and low rates of income inequality compared to other states. (Seventyfour/Adobe Stock)
Report: Tennessee ranks 44th for health outcomes

A new report highlights what Tennessee could focus on to improve the health of its residents. The latest America's Health Rankings report ranks …

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Launched in 2021, the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development's Office of Re-Entry suggests justice-involved individuals register on Jobs4TN before release to facilitate their job search. (Gstockstudio/AdobeStock)
6 people in prison receive bachelor’s degrees from Lane College

Bridging the gap between education and incarceration, six people in Tiptonville, Tennessee, recently got their bachelor's degrees through a historic …

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