The UMass Amherst campus.
Rhobite / Creative Commons /

'No Rule That Fits All' As Colleges Ponder What To Do This Fall

Colleges and universities across western Massachusetts are considering how to hold classes this fall, and whether in-person learning is a feasible idea amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Regional News

As State Reopens, Public Housing Remains Vulnerable To COVID-19

A few weeks ago, Susan Bonner noticed some new signs in her building, urging residents to wear masks. Not a bad idea, she thought. Except that we didn’t all have masks, yet, at that time, she recalls. Bonner, who is 78, lives in a senior public housing development in Nahant; shes also one of towns housing commissioners. Eventually, she says, residents in her building all got masks but it took some doing. Some people got a number of them and gave them out, Bonner says. And then the housing...

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A veterans' monument in Easthampton, Massachusetts.
Adam Frenier / NEPR

Western Mass. Marks Memorial Day A Little Differently Amid COVID-19

Memorial Day usually means parades and other public ceremonies honoring those who died while serving the armed forces. With COVID-19 restrictions, some western Massachusetts communities are changing how they mark the occasion.

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Federal workplace safety inspectors are investigating the death or hospitalization of at least three Connecticut elder care workers due to complications from COVID-19. 

The investigations come as union officials say at least six unionized nursing home employees have died from coronavirus. 

Massachusetts On Track To Lag Connecticut Casino Reopenings

May 21, 2020
MGM Springfield on Main Street in Springfield, Massachusetts.
Hoang 'Leon' Nguyen / The Republican /

Competitor casinos in Connecticut are readying themselves for a June 1 reopening. But an early July reopening is likely the best case scenario for Massachusetts gambling centers, which have been closed since March 15, and are part of the third phase of the state's reopening plan.

The tone and substance of Gov. Ned Lamont’s daily COVID-19 briefing changed Thursday as he looked back on the sweeping restrictions he’s imposed since March and ahead to a Memorial Day weekend when saltwater beaches reopen for swimming.

COVID-19 has driven New England’s higher education sector into financial "survival mode." Now colleges and universities must adapt or risk major — if not catastrophic — loss from the crisis. Join us for an America Amplified special from the New England News Collaborative. We'll bring together voices from across the region, and we want to hear yours.

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont has urged the Mohegan and Mashantucket Pequot tribes not to reopen parts of their casinos as announced on June 1. 

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Public Health

Adding A Nylon Stocking Layer Could Boost Protection From Cloth Masks, Study Finds

During World War II, nylon stockings disappeared from store shelves as the valuable synthetic material was diverted to make critical wartime supplies such as parachutes, flak jackets and aircraft fuel tanks. Now, new research suggests that nylon stockings could once again play a critical role in a national battle — this time by making homemade cloth masks significantly more protective. Researchers at Northeastern University have found that adding an outer layer made from nylon stockings to a...

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Some Bhutanese immigrants believe drinking liquor can protect them from COVID-19.
Little Visuals / Creative Commons

Dispelling Dangerous Myths About COVID-19

I can read and write English. But many of my fellow Bhutanese refugees can’t.

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Diane Drohan manages a command center of emergency food distribution organized by Northampton Survival Center, Grow Food Northampton and Community Action Pioneer Valley for people in need during the pandemic.
Nancy Eve Cohen / NEPR

Food Pantry Staffer Embraces 'Rewarding Exhaustion' In Essential Duties

Since the pandemic started, the number of people visiting food pantries in New England has jumped. In Northampton, Massachusetts, the Survival Center is serving more than three times as many households, from across 18 communities.

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