Health+Harvest

NPR Illinois Community Advisory Board identified the subject of food and health as important subjects for coverage in 2012. Health+Harvest provides for community engagement on health and food issues along with reporting on farm, field and fuel.  From seed to plate, from farmer's markets to GMOs, central Illinoisans need to know how to stay healthy and what they are eating.  In 2013, NPR Illinois joined a consortium of public media in the Harvest Public Media network.  The network provides broader coverage to Midwest food issues.

By examining these local, regional and national issues and their implications with in-depth and unbiased reporting, Health+Harvest fills a critical information void.

Support for Health+Harvest coverage comes from Central Illinois Farm Bureaus and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.  If you'd like to support this initiative, please contact Nice Bogdanovich at 217-206-9847.

In a video statement released on Twitter, NCAA president Mark Emmert says, "We cannot, at this point, have fall NCAA championships." He says there are not enough schools participating because of coronavirus cancellations and season postponements.

This means there will no championships in any Division 1 collegiate sports with the possible exception of football. "If you don't have half the schools participating, you can't have a legitimate championship," he says.

The U.S. now has more than 5 million cases and 166,700 deaths from the coronavirus. And with flu season approaching, the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned on Wednesday that things could get a lot more grim.

Robert Redfield said in an interview with WebMD that if Americans don't follow public health guidance, the country could be facing "the worst fall, from a public health perspective, we've ever had."

Gov. Brain Kemp is taking a new approach in his battle over face masks with Atlanta's mayor. Rather than have a judge rule on the conflict, he's going to issue a new order on the subject.

On Thursday Kemp announced the attorney general's office has withdrawn a lawsuit he filed against Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and the Atlanta city council, when she moved to reinstate more restrictive COVID-19-related safeguards.

An agreement that makes it easier for Rhode Island residents to vote by mail during the pandemic will remain in place after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an effort by Republicans to block it.

The agreement allows Rhode Islanders to vote in two upcoming elections without requiring voters to fill out mail-in ballots before two witnesses or a notary. That requirement was already suspended for the presidential primary that took place June 2.

Updated at 6:08 p.m. ET

Joe Biden is calling for everyone in the United States to wear a mask, well into the fall.

"Every single American should be wearing a mask when they're outside for the next three months, at a minimum," Biden said Thursday afternoon in remarks in Wilmington, Del. "Every governor should mandate mandatory mask-wearing. The estimates by the experts are it will save over 40,000 lives."

Let's face it, if you've been staying home a lot, you're probably pretty tired of looking at the same faces. Love them as we do, it feels like well past time to start seeing other people, to visit or host relatives and dear friends. So how can you do this without unknowingly spreading the virus or getting exposed?

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The Justice Department is accusing Yale University of discriminating against Asian American and white applicants based on their race. The DOJ has spent years investigating the way Yale handles undergraduate admissions. I should note that I graduated from Yale. In a statement, the school denies the allegations and says it won't change its admissions practices. Melissa Korn writes about higher education for The Wall Street Journal and joins us now.

Welcome.

MELISSA KORN: Thanks for having me.

It's one of the cheapest ways to help kids in extremely poor countries: Twice a year, give them a 50-cent pill to kill off nasty intestinal parasites. Now, a landmark study finds the benefits carry over long into adulthood — and the impact is massive. But dig deeper and the issue quickly becomes more complicated — and controversial.

To understand why, it helps to start at the beginning, when newly minted economist — and future Nobel prize winner — Michael Kremer says he stumbled into this study by lucky happenstance.

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In Annapolis, Md., young men and women in crisp white uniforms and white masks are doing what students here have been doing for 175 years — taking their first steps to becoming officers in the U.S. Navy.

These exercises are a part of the traditional "plebe summer," an intensive crash course that prepares first-year students for the transition to military life. They learn how to salute and march as a unit, along with lots of new lingo: floors are called "decks," toilets are "heads," and the students are "midshipmen."

Jasmine Obra believed that if it wasn't for her brother Joshua, she wouldn't exist. When 7-year-old Josh realized that his parents weren't going to live forever, he asked for a sibling so he would never be alone.

By spring 2020, at ages 29 and 21, Josh and Jasmine shared a condo in Anaheim, Calif., not far from Disneyland, which they both loved.

Both worked at a 147-bed locked nursing facility that specialized in caring for elderly people with cognitive issues such as Alzheimer's and where Jasmine, a nursing student, was mentored by Josh, a registered nurse.

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It's a hard time to be in the restaurant business - unless your restaurant's takeout business offers comfort food that people really crave right now. Here's Monica Eng of our member station WBEZ in Chicago.

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Could college football teams play any games in the pandemic this fall? The Big Ten and Pac-12 conferences are out. Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway told MORNING EDITION the decision will have serious repercussions.

Updated at 4:40 p.m. ET

Despite opposition from the oil and gas industry it aims to help, the Trump administration is rolling back an Obama-era rule designed to reduce climate-warming methane emissions.

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Discussions for the next round of coronavirus relief funding remain ensnared in a political back and forth over election money, with the topic of mail-in voting a lingering point of contention between Democrats and the Trump administration.

President Trump on Wednesday spent much of his daily briefing to reporters railing against additional funding to support the U.S. Postal Service and mail-in voting, making the baseless accusation that voting by mail is ripe for fraud.

A federal judge in New York struck down a Trump administration decision to scale back U.S. government protections for migratory birds. The change by the administration would have allowed companies that accidentally kill migratory birds during the course of their work no longer to face the possibility of criminal prosecution.

In a 31-page document, U.S. District Judge Valerie Caproni cited the novel To Kill a Mockingbird to support her decision.

The sheriff in a central Florida COVID-19 hot spot has issued a directive prohibiting deputies, staff and visitors to department offices from wearing protective face masks, an order that came as a local mayor and city council squared off over a mask ordinance for businesses.

After more than 100 days without any community spread of COVID-19, New Zealand moved to an elevated alert level Wednesday with news of four new cases and another four probable ones.

Last month, we asked our audience: What are some of the inventive ways that people are addressing COVID-19 challenges in their community?

Netflix is rolling out a new feature that will let some viewers change the playback speeds of movies and TV shows.

It might seem targeted toward people who want to binge as much TV as quickly as possible. But being able to play shows slower (at half speed or three-quarters speed) or faster (at 1.25 or 1.5 speed) is also a boon for blind and deaf viewers.

For people who are blind or have low vision, the reason why involves a feature called audio description.

President Trump wants to give a $100 billion boost to the U.S. economy by hitting the "pause" button on workers' payroll taxes.

That would leave more money in people's paychecks. But the move — which Trump ordered over the weekend — is only temporary. And that could produce headaches down the road for workers, employers and the Social Security system.

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When Barack Obama won the presidential nomination in 2008, his vice-presidential pick was a rival who ran against him, Joe Biden.

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Barely a week after Georgia reopened its public schools amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, a school district north of Atlanta has ordered 925 students, teachers and staff to self-quarantine after dozens tested positive for the coronavirus. The district also announced the temporary closing of one of its hardest-hit high schools.

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The number of people flying on commercial jetliners is down 75% from last summer, but the rate of those getting caught either inadvertently or deliberately trying to bring a gun on board is soaring.

Transportation Security Administration officers are finding guns in carry on bags at security checkpoints at a rate three times higher than they did last summer. And 80% of those guns are loaded.

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