Two bills that would change the way Connecticut sentences juveniles convicted of serious crimes are making their way through the legislature. As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, they come in response to U-S Supreme Court rulings that say treating young people like adults could violate the constitution. The proposed bills come with the recommendation of the Connecticut Sentencing Commission -- a mix of judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, corrections officials and others. And both of them deal with the lengthy adult sentences imposed on juveniles and hinge on the idea that kids are different than adults, and should be treated that way. One is called house bill 6581. For those people in prison serving lengthy sentences for crimes they committed when they were younger than 18, this bill would give them a second-look. That means it would mandate a parole hearing after a good portion of their sentences had been served. Sarah Russell is a law professor at the Quinnipiac School of Law.
A few weeks ago, the Greater New Haven Branch of the NAACP released a report showing significant health, economic, and educational disparities between White and minority populations....so significant that they’re calling it a modern day “urban apartheid.”
A handful of maps of Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine, published in Philadelphia during the early 1850s, bear the name of E. M. Woodford. Edgar M. Woodford was born April 15, 1824, in Avon, Connecticut, where his family had a farm. Self-taught as a civil engineer, Woodford became county surveyor for the County of Hartford. A nephew recalled his Uncle Edgar as “a great strapping man,” who would come “over the hills with his [surveying] instruments over his shoulder, crying for fear his work would not come out right.”
The Hartford Homeless Outreach Team heads out every Thursday to check-in on Hartford's homeless population and hand out lunches. They go out early before the homeless leave their makeshift abodes for the day.
One in 10 adults in the United States is a lapsed Catholic, according to a 2009 report by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.
This might change, say some religious scholars. They think that the newly appointed Pope Francis is going to bring people back to the church. He’s focusing on the poor, wearing simple vestments, washing women’s feet. A far stretch from his predecessor.
Connecticut Hospital Day at the Capitol drew more than 600 hospital workers to Hartford today. They were protesting Governor Malloy's proposed budget, which they say would cut state spending on hospitals by $550 million over the next two years. The cuts would include the payments hospitals get for treating the uninsured.
But on WNPR's Where We Live, the administration's budget chief Ben Barnes said he's not sure the plan should actually be called a cut. "In recent years," Barnes said, "hospitals have received very very large increases each year, so we've discontinued providing large increases but I think overall, we're looking at a flat-funding scenario over the next few years."
While President Obama pushed for stronger gun control Monday at the University of Hartford, students and guests who heard him speak at the Chase Family Arena had mixed views about his chances for success.
The December massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School has led to calls for increased police presence in Connecticut schools. Lawmakers heard testimony Friday on a measure concerning school-based arrests.
The bill aims to reduce the number of students arrested at school for low-level, non-violent offenses. Schools would be required to report the number of arrests, and boards of ed would have to have written agreements with local police departments detailing the role of law enforcement in their schools.
Kate Callahan is one of our favorite local folk artists. Now she’s a music festival organizer as well. This weekend, the Hartfolk Festival is taking place at the University of Saint Joseph. Musicians from throughout the area will take the stage and show us what modern folk music sounds and looks like. Performers include past Where We Live guests like Kate Callahan and String Theorie.
CPBN Education is establishing a PBS NewsHour Student Reporting Lab at America’s Choice at SAND School in Hartford. There is only one other elementary school and only three middle schools in this nationwide program, which includes over 40 schools, with teams from New York, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., South Carolina, Florida, Michigan, Illinois, Louisiana, Utah, Texas and California.
If you take a look at movies or TV, you’d think that having a disability is the worst fate possible-- maybe even worse than death. Better to not be born at all than struggle through life unable to walk, hear, see or talk.
It's an unusual time to be the president of a state university in Connecticut.
The Malloy administration has been trying to overhaul the system of state colleges and universities, the legislature is trying to reign in spending by the Board of Regents which oversees that system. A tuition increase is going into effect, which has drawn protests from students and even some faculty, who feel that the University of Connecticut is getting preferential treatment to the State Universities and Community colleges.
We all know the story. Monkeys in a science lab, top secret research, something goes terribly wrong. It’s no surprise that most cinematic attempts to depict research like this ends up focusing on what happens to the humans.
But what about the ethics of this research, and what it means for the test subjects? In many cases, chimpanzees have been seen as viable in research because of their close relationship to humans.
Forty men and women from Connecticut died in the Iraq War. Trumbull resident Mike Mastroni created the Connecticut Fallen Heroes Foundation to remember veterans killed after 9-11 and to honor their families.
WNPR's Lucy Nalpathanchil spoke with him in Hartford about his decision to get involved in this way.
More about the Connecticut Fallen Heroes Foundation can be found here. The state of Connecticut has also created a website to remember local veterans who died in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.
Think about your local library. Do you still picture a dusty old building full of dusty old books? Do you imagine little old ladies with their glasses down at the ends of their noses, shushing you every time you speak?
Today we’ll check in with the libraries of the 21st century. Ebooks, the Internet, audiobooks. Music, movies, videogames. Coffee bars, couches, comic books… And no shushing? It’s a whole new world in the world of libraries.
Good teaching is the single biggest indicator for student success, and while we spend more money to teach our students than in any other country, we achieve at lower levels than our foreign counterparts.
So, what makes for a good teacher, and how do we know it when we see it?
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation asked that question of 3,000 students and their teachers in a recently released study that took 3 years and cost $45 million dollars to complete.
What they learned is what most kids already know, students are the best judge of what works.
Former Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez was back in court today, appealing his 2010 convictions on corruption-related charges. Perez was sentenced to three years in prison but has been free while his appeal is pending. Perez was convicted for two separate incidents.
Earlier this week, the Department of Defense officially announced it will extend certain spousal benefits to partners of gay and lesbian service-members. It's another step in a policy shift to treat all service members equally since the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell."
America is getting older and Connecticut is growing grayer faster than almost every other state.
The first batch of baby boomers hit 65 in 2011, and Connecticut’s over-65 population is expected to grow by more than 64% by the time the last batch turns 65 in 2029. When they retire, here’s what we’re looking at: A smaller and less skilled pool of workers to replace them.
But don’t expect this new group of seniors to just retire all at once; they’ll be working longer, in part because they want to, but also to rebuild those nest eggs smashed during the recession.
The Shubert Theater in New Haven turns 100 next year - At one time it was a test stage for future Broadway shows, but since then has struggled to make ends meet, and now the city wants to hand over operations and expenses to a private company.
But the Shubert’s a success story, in that it survived the wrecking ball, while other, once thriving performance and movie houses have fallen to pieces, long ago torn down and forgotten.
School “reform” is a loaded term that divides many teachers and parents - and pits many well-intentioned educators against one another.
Dr. Pedro Noguera is a leading national voice on education, education reform and the achievement gap. He’s a professor of education at NYU, author of City Schools and the American Dream: Reclaiming the Promise of Public Education, and co-founder of an effort called a “Broader, Bolder approach to Education." He’s also a former classroom teacher in Providence and Oakland.
Advocates who work with domestic violence victims in Connecticut say many times the workplace can be a key to stopping abuse and saving lives. And they say many of the state’s employers could be doing a whole lot more to help.
The law firm of O’Brien Tanski and Young is located right in downtown Hartford.
“We used to be a very open law firm. We didn’t lock the door and people came and went without thinking.”
Driving through downtown Hartford, you’ll see a lot of empty storefronts, plenty of parking garages, and some impressive high rises. And while the city has a hard time getting businesses to fill the office space - now at 26% vacancy -- developers can’t build housing fast enough to meet demand.
In fact, several of those old office buildings are being retrofitted for new housing. So people are voting for downtown housing with their dollars, but is there enough retail to keep feet on the street?