Public Affairs

6/4 Forever Home

Jun 3, 2015

Pat Castellano of Animal Allies talks about adopting special needs animals like Charlie Brown.

Pupparazzi Companion Animal Photography

Last Thursday (5/25) the St. Louis County Sheriff called Seeds of Hope Youth Ranch in Duluth to rescue four horses and two ponies from a property up the shore.  Seeds of Hope co-founder Russ Krook says the horses were covered in mud, had no food or water, and appear to have been neglected for quite some time.

Islamic Center of the Twin Ports

Since 9/11, extremist Muslims have been using their faith to justify jihad.  Other Muslims have protested against what they say is a distortion of Islam. Non-Muslim people, in many cases, know only what they read in the news and tend to lump all Muslims - and all poorly understood interpretations of the Quran - together. So whose job is it to educate people - those who are misunderstanding or those who are misunderstood?

Second Harvest Northern Lakes Food Bank

Twice as many seniors are using food shelves in the Northland as did five years ago.

Avera Health

More and better internet infrastructure in rural Minnesota is creating a virtual "perfect storm" of benefits when it comes to health care.

The ability of larger hospitals to extend their services to small rural hospitals via telecommuting and teleconferencing means patients can stay in their homes and communities when they're ill, small hospitals don't have to close, and small communities hang on to jobs.

Deb Holman/CHUM Street Outreach Advocate

St. Louis County's ten-year-plan to end homelessness is in either year ten or eight ... depending on how you count the process that began in 2005 or the completed plan that was adopted in 2007.  Can we end homelessness in St. Louis County within two years?

The 3rd Annual Housing for All Community Summit took a hard look at that question last week.

5/28 Forever Home

May 28, 2015

  Cooper is a male Poodle mix guessed to be about 10 yrs old. Cooper came in as a stray and was never claimed. He is housebroken, likes dogs and cats and friendly to all he has met. He really is an affectionate little guy who deserves a family of his own. He has been neutered, vet checked and given his canine and rabies vaccinations.

The future of Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare may not be as bleak as it's being made to seem.  But that's part of the problem: not only too much contradictory information out there, but the issues being politicized and manipulated for votes.

For the first time since 1978, sometime this summer there won't be steam coming out of the iconic Duluth steam plant smokestack in Canal Park. The plant's been operating continuously for the last 37 years, but the shut down for a few weeks will be part of its transition to Duluth Energy Systems.

joshua_putnam'Flickr

Floods, fires, benzene spills ... when there's a disaster in the Northland, the emergency preparedness, management and response folks are the ones we count on to keep us safe.

Last week, many of those professionals attended the Under One Roof conference.  Tony Guerra is the Readiness Coordinator for the American Red Cross in Duluth and he was one of the attendees.

A couple of the take-aways? 

Some wins ... some losses and a fresh list of priorities for next session.  Representative Jen Schultz joins us this morning to talk about the highs and lows of her freshman year in the Minnesota House, and how the cards are stacking to create a more partisan - not less - legislature.

5/21 Forever Home

May 20, 2015

Sammy:

Sammy is a Spaniel mix, male, D.O.B. 9/7/04. Sammys' owner moved away and decided not to take Sammy.  How could anyone leave such a  kind, gentle , loving boy. He just wants a home again. Do you have room for a good boy who only wants some affection, food, and an occasional stroll with you? Come meet Sammy; you will fall in love!

Salmon:

Schplook/Flickr

Kids at Lincoln Park Middle School aren't getting suspended nearly as often as they used to.

In fact, the number of days students were suspended has dropped by more than half in just one year.

Rumors and misinformation, helped along by social media, aren't painting a true picture of the school, especially these days, says Principal Brenda Vatthauer, who's wrapping up her first year at Lincoln Park.

Michael Taggart/Flickr

Assisted suicide is against the law in Minnesota.

You can't advise, encourage or help someone take their own life here.

For years, the conversation - and controversy - has swirled around cases where someone who is already dying or in chronic pain wants to end their own suffering ... cases where, you might argue, someone is trying to compassionately help another end their pain or die with dignity.

But what about cases where that advice is, perhaps, being offered over social media, by someone trying to bully someone else into killing themselves?

Ruben Schade/Flickr

Tiny houses.  Micro-homes.  Re-purposed shipping containers.  We've heard the buzz about them not only as environmentally friendly housing options, but as low-cost options to help house the homeless in our country.

In Madison, WI, tiny houses to shelter the people struggling with homelessness cost about $4,000 apiece.

In Duluth, plans were afoot a year ago to convert shipping containers - which are plentiful and comparatively inexpensive in the Twin Ports - to housing, and at about half the cost per unit of traditional low-income housing.

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