Extra Extra : Census & Demographics

Extra Extra Monday: Heroin reaches the suburbs, feds slash gas explosion fines, casinos use hardball tactics to collect debts

Heroin reaching into the suburbs | The (Rochester, N.Y.) Democrat and Chronicle

Heroin, long a scourge of inner cities, has infiltrated suburbia and rural towns and is claiming the lives of an increasingly younger, middle-class and white male clientele at an alarming rate.

But new statistics compiled for the Democrat and Chronicle by the office, which investigates suspected drug-related deaths across the region, show that more often than not the victims resided outside the city of Rochester.

 

Cancer-causing chemical PCE contaminates Colorado soil, water and homes | The Denver Post

Spills releasing PCE, the cancer-causing chemical used in dry cleaning and ...

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Extra Extra Monday: NSA spying on smart phone data, America's underground adoption market, troubled group homes

The Child Exchange | Reuters
“Inside America’s underground market for adopted children”

Privacy Scandal: NSA Can Spy on Smart Phone Data | Der Spiegel
"The United States' National Security Agency intelligence-gathering operation is capable of accessing user data from smart phones from all leading manufacturers. Top secret NSA documents that SPIEGEL has seen explicitly note that the NSA can tap into such information on Apple iPhones, BlackBerry devices and Google's Android mobile operating system."

Left with nothing | The Washington Post
"This man owed $134 in property taxes. The District sold the lien to an investor who foreclosed on his $197 ...

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Minority small businesses trail among stiff competition for U.S. contracts

About 17 percent of the U.S. population is Hispanic, and 13 percent is black, but ratios for federal small-business contracts to those groups are in the single digits, according to a report from Bloomberg News. Experts told Bloomberg that "the needle hasn't moved," possibly the result of stiffer competition for contracts as agencies cut spending.

In India, poorest women coerced into sterilization

Bloomberg News reports that India accounts for 37 percent of the world's female sterilizations. Last year, 4.6 million women were sterilized, a number reach in large part because of govenrment quotas and incentives for doctors. Women are supposed to receive counseling before they give consent for the operations, which doesn't always happen. Sterilizations are sometimes happening in unsanitary conditions with bloody sheets and rusty scalpels.

Extra Extra Monday: Raiteros, problems in foster care, questionable death investigations, gang wars in Toledo

Taken for a Ride: Temp Agencies and ‘Raiteros’ in Immigrant Chicago | ProPublica and Marketplace
“Some of America's best-known companies and largest temp agencies benefit from — and tacitly collaborate with — an underworld of labor brokers, known as raiteros, who charge workers fees, pushing their pay below minimum wage.”

Problems keep proliferating at discredited private foster care agency | Los Angeles Times
“A decade after L.A. County auditors delivered a harsh assessment of Teens Happy Homes, probe finds that children were repeatedly harmed in recent years and dubious financial practices grew.”

Mortgage Mess | NBC Bay Area
“Tens of thousands of Bay ...

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Extra Extra Roundup: Tax delinquency, wrongful foreclosure, false confessions and school abuse

Center for Investigative Reporting
VA’s ability to quickly provide benefits plummets under Obama
“Internal VA documents, obtained by the Center for Investigative Reporting and authenticated by the agency, reveal that delays newly returning veterans face before receiving disability compensation and other benefits are far longer than the agency has publicly acknowledged. The documents also offer insight into some of the reasons for those delays.”

The Houston Chronicle
Pasadena Superfund site's owner indicted, missing
“In reality, prosecutors said, he is a polluter responsible for a 17-acre disaster - hundreds of dumpsters and concrete tanks vaporizing hazardous chemicals into the air ...

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Extra Extra Monday: Medical bills, hyperengineered food and private prison cash

Time
Bitter Pill: Why medical bills are killing us
“Breaking these trillions down into real bills going to real patients cuts through the ideological debate over health care policy. By dissecting the bills that people like Sean Recchi face, we can see exactly how and why we are overspending, where the money is going and how to get it back. We just have to follow the money.”

New York Times Magazine
The Extraordinary Science of Addictive Junk Food
“Inside the hyperengineered, savagely marketed, addiction-creating battle for American ‘stomach share.’”

Columbia Journalism Review
Immigration reform and private prison cash

“Key lawmakers ...

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Young parents moving away from NJ suburbs and into the city to raise kids

An analysis by The Record/NorthJersey.com has found that, "in a striking reversal, growing numbers of young parents are choosing the bustle of New York City over the calm of suburban life as a place to live, a trend that is already changing the face of some neighborhoods across North Jersey and could have long-term implications for schools, the housing market and beyond."

Charter schools aggressively screen applicants, sometimes in violation of state and federal law

Charter schools are public schools, funded by taxpayers and widely promoted as open to all. But Reuters has found that across the United States, charters aggressively screen student applicants, assessing their academic records, parental support, disciplinary history, motivation, special needs and even their citizenship, sometimes in violation of state and federal law. Reuters found that thousands of charter schools don’t provide subsidized lunches, putting them out of reach for families in poverty. Hundreds mandate that parents spend hours doing “volunteer” work for the school or risk losing their child’s seat. In one extreme example, an Illinois school mandates ...

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