Non-Profits

Veteran advocate groups have petitioned the federal VA to change its claims process. The proposed rule change would impact veterans with PTSD who were sexually assaulted while in the military. 

Hispanic Bar Association Scholarship

Jun 30, 2013
Chion Wolf

Social Enterprise is a big idea that straddles for-profit and non-profit worlds, with an aim to make a difference. Today, local business leaders and entrepreneurs are working to make our state a social enterprise “hub.”  But can we turn from a place with lots of non-profits struggling for access to a very small pot of money - to an entrepreneur driven, socially conscious business community? This hour, we’ll talk to social enterprise guru Robert Egger, and also to a new Hartford business incubator who are looking to support social entrepreneurs.

St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center is cutting funding to a Hartford program that targets infant mortality. The hospital says the recently-passed state budget is to blame. The Maternal Infant Outreach Program is almost 30 years old and is jointly funded by two hospitals and the city of Hartford. It serves about 450 pregnant women a year.

creative commons

Connecticut was one of the first states to have its own Freedom of Information Commission, designed to administer and enforce FOIA laws. But things are changing.

A last minute bill passed at the legislature, limiting the release of information about Newtown - but does that set a precedent for future crime scenes?

It’s definitely got people talking about the future of FOI - and spurred the creation of a new task force to see if our current laws are relevant in a new internet age.

Connecticut's Commissioner of the Department of Children and Families testified at a Senate hearing on Tuesday in response to a bill that would require states to do more to help children who've been exploited by sex traffickers.

Danbury Man Wants to Take Anonymous Out of Recovery

Jun 5, 2013

Ladies of Twain

Jun 4, 2013

The Mark Twain House and Museum in Hartford was in danger of being shut down back in 2008 after years of bad financial management.  But the struggle to save the 19 room mansion has been one that’s been going on for much longer.

It’s taken years of research, a lot of money and a little bit of luck to restore the house and make it a destination for visitors - who get to experience what it looked like when Mark Twain smoked cigars in his billiard room.

Jeremy Keith (Wikimedia Commons)

Remember when you used to learn about what was happening in your community when the newspaper hit your front stoop? That world has, of course, changed—and journalism professor Dan Kennedy says we’re now in a “post-newspaper” age.

Papers haven’t gone away, but their staffs and scope have shrunk, and what’s bubbled up to fill the gap is a new type of digital journalism with a new business model. Kennedy went looking for examples of this change around the time of the economic downturn, and found a pretty interesting lab experiment - Connecticut.


Fair housing advocates are celebrating a victory. They recently won a settlement from a Hartford-area landlord who allegedly denied apartments to people using public assistance to pay their rent. The Connecticut Fair Housing Center claimed the landlord, Paul Rosow, discriminated against people who received disability checks and housing assistance.

Hartford's outdoor concert season is about to start.  And while that's fun for a lot of people, some call it a scheduled mass casualty event.  Binge drinking is a serious concern for law enforcement and public health officials. 

Hartford's outdoor concert season is about to start. And while that's fun for a lot of people, some call it a scheduled mass casualty event. As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, binge drinking is a serious concern for law enforcement and public health officials.

State officials are dealing with a new wave of paperwork as they work to implement new gun laws. As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, residents who want permits and background checks may have a longer wait than usual. Before the December Newtown shootings, the state would typically have between 800 and 1,400 pending pistol permits to process each month.

Caviar Takes Its Toll

May 9, 2013

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra has made headlines recently for questionable city spending -- like dining on caviar at taxpayer expense. Now, it looks as though the city council is taking concrete action to push back. As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, it's likely the council will reject Segarra's appointment for the city's chief operating officer.

The legislature is considering a bill that would allow students to opt out of dissecting a dead animal at school. WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports. State Representative Diana Urban supports the bill.

Last December, the Capitol Region Gun BuyBack coalition traded more than $10,000 in gift cards for over 180 working guns -- an effort to get those firearms off the streets.

In a couple of weeks, they're hosting another gun buyback -- and officials say it's not just about public safety...but about public health. Joining us now is Dr. David Shapiro from St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center, one of the partners in the program. 

Hartford Mayor Pedro Segarra says city employees will no longer be able to use their credit cards for business entertainment. WNPR's Jeff Cohen has more. When someone issues a controversial audit at 5:02 p.m. on a Friday, it's kind of sign that they don't want you to read it.

That's what happened last week, when the city of Hartford released its internal audit of its credit cards. City officials have been fending off claims of abuse. A New Year's Eve dinner for Mayor Pedro Segarra, his spouse, and six others at Max Downtown was what first drew headlines.

Chion Wolf

The music, culture and movement of Brazil is evocative of a certain kind of lifestyle to many Americans - like me - who’ve never been there. The beach at Ipanema, dense rainforests, a lyrical language and laid-back people.

But the real Brazil is booming and complex, one of the world’s emerging economies.

Connecticut is also home to many thousands of Brazilian immigrants - who occupy an uneasy space as part of a Latin American diaspora with a different language and cultural heritage.

Catie Talarski

Libraries might be changing faster than just about any other part of public life. These civic institutions were known for more than a century for their voluminous stacks of books and quiet spaces - now, they’re all about public events, high-tech connectivity, even 3-D printing!

The Giving Tree

Apr 30, 2013


Courtesy of CT DMV

Many undocumented immigrants in Connecticut want to apply for a state driver's license.

As WNPR's Lucy Nalpathanchil reports,  legislation to allow them to do so stalled in a legislative committee.  Now proponents are pushing lawmakers to find another way to get the legislation before the full General Assembly. 

It may be time to say goodbye to the Whale...again. As WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, Hartford's minor league hockey team could soon have a new name. The team used to be known as the Hartford Wolf Pack.

Then, in 2010, it was renamed the Hartford Whale -- a throwback to the city's onetime NHL Whalers. "It was sort of about embracing the Whaler past." That's Paul Doyle, a reporter with the Hartford Courant. He says Howard Baldwin, who operated the franchise, did his best to bring the Whalers back from the dead. They left the state in 1997.

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.

Chion Wolf

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.”

sarahstierch, creative commons

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.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

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."

Governor Dannel Malloy signed new laws that say people who own assault weapons and high-capacity magazines will have to register them with the state by January 1. But as WNPR's Jeff Cohen reports, the state says creating the registration process is going to take some time.

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. 

taberandrew, creative commons

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.

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