WNPR

New England

Muslims in America are the subject of heated political debate. But they account for a very small number of elected politicians in New England.

One nonprofit, based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is encouraging American-Muslims across the U.S. to run for political office. The group, called Jetpac, will train potential candidates regardless of party affiliation with the goal of increasing civic engagement within Muslim communities.

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Proponents of a plan to bring expanded intercity passenger rail service to western Massachusetts are getting support from Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy.

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Reports of large scale, nationwide deportation raids are stoking fear in Massachusetts immigrant communities. Immigrants — both those with legal status and those living here illegally — are questioning exactly who is vulnerable for deportation. 

There are many challenges to farming for a living: It's often grueling work that relies on unpredictable factors such as weather and global market prices. But one aspect that's often ignored is the cost of health care. 

Environmental advocates say a planned natural gas pipeline in New England could cost ratepayers more than twice what’s currently projected. And they point to a study that says the pipeline could be unnecessary by as early as 2023.

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Year after year, hundreds of thousands of people find themselves homeless in the United States — including the young.

This hour, we explore local efforts to help homeless youth in Connecticut. What kinds of programs are out there to help them to not only find housing but employment, too?

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As natural gas gets diverted for home and other heating this winter, the head of New England's electricity grid is warning about possible future risks to the region's power.

President-elect Donald Trump took to Twitter again Thursday morning, this time to urge his followers to "Buy L.L.Bean," and support one of his campaign backers.

"Thank you to Linda Bean of L.L.Bean for your great support and courage," he tweeted Thursday. "People will support you even more now. Buy L.L.Bean."

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It’s hard to read the word "mafia" and not be reminded of scenes from The Godfather or Casino.

But mafias infiltrate more than just movie plots and crime novels. Their presence is felt in states and societies across the globe.

C-HIT

Thousands of metastatic breast cancer patients nationwide have given researchers access to their tumors and DNA in the hopes it will lead to breakthrough treatments and therapies for one of the most deadly forms of cancer.

Matt Farley might be one of the most prolific recording artists of all time. He’s not a household name, but he’s got thousands of songs scattered across digital music services like Spotify and iTunes.

Farley’s music may sound strange, but he’s figured out a formula to success in the era of streaming music.

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Labor pains and lessons from the north.

As Connecticut comes to terms with recent job loss, Massachusetts emerges as a regional leader in statewide job recovery. This hour, we explore the latest job market trends and find out what Connecticut stands to learn from the Bay State. 

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

The number of deaths from heroin and synthetic opioids continues to rise in New England, according to data just released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Bird lovers may see a lot less of the piping plover on the region’s beaches this summer. The little black-and-white shorebirds’ winter habitat in the Bahamas was hit hard by Hurricane Matthew last year, taking a heavy toll on the birds.

There aren't many Shakers left.

Sister Frances Carr, one of three remaining members of the religious group commonly known as the Shakers, died Monday at the age of 89.

According to the group's website, Carr died due to cancer at the Shaker community at Sabbathday Lake in New Gloucester, Maine, "surrounded by the community and her nieces."

Officials at the Burlington Electric Department discovered malware on a Burlington Electric laptop Friday that was identified as part of the Russian hacking offensive, utility officials confirmed Friday evening.

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Massachusetts has agreed to a $640,000 settlement from Kinder Morgan to allow the company to run a pipeline through conservation land in Berkshire County on its way from New York to Connecticut. 

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The minimum wage next month is increasing in four of the six New England states.

Massachusetts’s 2017 rate of $11.00 an hour puts it in a tie for top statewide rate in the country, along with Washington state. Not far behind are Connecticut, with a new rate of $10.10 an hour, and Vermont, at $10.00.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

With holiday travel expected to reach its highest levels this year, the state Department of Consumer Protection is warning drivers to watch for a type of fraud at the gas pump called “skimming.” 

In 2014, the Obama administration issued a federal memo aiming to put an end to random deportations of people living illegally in the U.S. who aren't criminals. But a closer look finds that there are still cases where immigration authorities are ignoring these policies, including in Vermont.

Next month, a mix of Syrian and Iraqi refugees will begin arriving in Rutland, Vermont. They’ll be the first of 100 that will be resettled there over the next year. Though there's been loud opposition to the plan in the aging, blue-collar city of 16,000, proponents remain optimistic — and many have been volunteering long hours to ensure the plan succeeds.

It’s hard to avoid the hand-wringing about aging demographics in New England these days. The region's six states have the six lowest birth rates in the country. Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont have the oldest populations in the country, and Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts aren't far behind.

(Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

New England is an old region, and not just by historical standards.

The population here is aging faster than almost any other place in the country. Fewer people are having children, and many of the states struggle to keep younger generations living and working here.

And as New England's baby boomers grow older, and live longer, the need for health care workers also grows.

Some fishermen are pinning their hopes on a new kind of trawl net at use in the Gulf of Maine, designed to scoop up abundant flatfish such as flounder and sole while avoiding species such as cod, which regulators say are in severe decline.

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It will be legal Thursday to possess small amounts of marijuana, or to grow it for recreational purposes, in Massachusetts. But that isn’t the the case in neighboring states, where pot possession remains illegal. And law enforcement in some of these places are getting ready.

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