Stories

The IRE Resource Center is a major research library containing more than 27,000 investigative stories.

Most of our stories are not available for download but can be easily ordered by contacting the Resource Center directly at 573-882-3364 or rescntr@ire.org where a researcher can help you pinpoint what you need.

Search results for "definition" ...

  • 60 Minutes: War Crime

    60 MINUTES has obtained rare video of a 2017 sarin gas attack on Syrian civilians that drew a 59-missile response by the U.S. military last year. The disturbing high definition video, shown publically for the first time, exposes the horrors of these internationally banned weapons, that the Syrian Dictator Bashar al-Assad continues to use to massacre his own people.
  • Neglected Neighbors: How Elderly Housing Policies Fail Connecticut's Most Vulnerable

    Thismulti-part series investigates a decades-old policy that mixes the elderly with disabled residents of any age in the same public housing. Dating back to the bills that established public housing during President Roosevelt’s administration, the definition of “elderly” was defined to include not only people over a certain age, but also people with disabilities. Today, that definition remains, despite decades-worth of government studies that show it to be problematic to house these populations together. Recommendations were made to ease management and social issues, but few were implemented. In Connecticut, legislators have been repeatedly warned about worsening issues by housing authorities and residents. Today, the policy is still in effect, and failing both the elderly and disabled people who live there.
  • Nation Institute (TomDispatch and The Intercept) coverage of the U.S. Military in Africa

    I wrote an untitled collection of articles for The Nation Institute’s TomDispatch.com and First Look Media’s The Intercept investigating the U.S. military’s extensive and largely secret operations on the African continent. Utilizing documents obtained via the Freedom of Information Act and from a whistle blower as well as a plethora of open source material, I offered a rare glimpse of the actions of a very secretive military command. Along the way, I revealed covert U.S. drone bases used for targeted killing campaigns from Yemen and Somalia to Iraq and Syria; I exposed unreported drug use and criminal behavior by U.S. forces across Africa; and shined a light on a multitude of missions in which elite U.S. forces trained alongside members of African armies regularly cited by the State Department for human rights abuses; among many other revelations. (While The Intercept may not fit the definition of a small outlet, I generally work alone and receive only spare support beyond editing. And TomDispatch is a truly tiny outlet.) https://theintercept.com/drone-papers/target-africa/ https://theintercept.com/2015/10/21/stealth-expansion-of-secret-us-drone-base-in-africa/ https://theintercept.com/2016/02/10/where-to-invade-next-is-the-most-subversive-movie-michael-moore-has-ever-made/
  • A Perfect Storm

    Findings from a Channel 4 I-Team investigation that stretched over a two-year period into Tennessee prisons and the department of correction resulted in 2015 in four legislative hearings, an independent audit, proof that lawmakers received faulty information in testimony, calls for the resignation of the commissioner and forced the department to re-define how it classified assaults.
  • Trouble with Taxes

    The intricacies of the property tax system in Wisconsin are not unlike the federal tax code: complex, confusing and potentially quite boring. But reporters Rutledge and Crowe tackled the topic with determination and curiosity and uncovered a statewide assessment system rife with problems. Founded in the late 1700s on fairness, Wisconsin’s system is far from fair. In their investigation, Rutledge and Crowe used documents and large data sets to penetrate a subject that impacts every property owner in Wisconsin but that few understand. The disparities were hitting homeowners in their wallets, but most had no clue why. Among the discoveries: Assessors across Wisconsin violated the state constitution while regulators ignored the practice; in dozens of communities, 20% or more of taxes were paid by the wrong people; and assessors in 15% of municipalities were doing “poor” work by the state’s own definition.
  • Watching Tony Die

    Wendy Halloran's journalistic skills have been focused in uncovering the secrets that often lurk behind the closed doors of our state institutions. Wendy began reporting about conditions in the Arizona Department of Corrections and became the vehicle through which the public would learn the story of Tony Lester. Tony, 26 years of age and suffering with schizophrenia tragically took his own life as he lingered in his prison cell, without proper medications and treatment, to ease the suffering he endured due to his debilitating illness. Wendy's ground breaking work in penetrating the great wall of silence within our state prison system was truly amazing. Wendy was able to obtain videos of Tony's last few moments of life through her fearless, "don't stop until the job is done attitude" The picture we see revealed in his final hours will create the guide for reform of Arizona's prison policy and procedures in treatment of those with mental disabilities for years to come. Tony Lester was a young man with a mental disability whose life unfortunately crossed with Arizona's criminal justice system. Tony's illness became a death sentence for him as all of our mental health system safety nets failed him. From the moment of Tony's first major psychotic break, when law enforcement was summoned rather than a Crisis Response Team, Tony's chances of survival grew dim. Arizona's courts do not place much importance on the state of mind a defendant has at the time a crime occurs but rather spend millions to be sure a defendant is competent at the time of trial. At trial we then prosecute to the fullest extent allowed by law, as we did in Tony's case and hand him a 12 year prison sentence, for his illness which was at the root of his desire to end his suffering. Some call it the definition of insanity, we do the same thing over and over again and each time expect a different result. Her work in bringing the story of Tony Lester's illness and treatment within the Arizona criminal justice system into the public view, has opened the eyes of the public as to what we can expect, when we allow a mental health system to fail and our prisons to become the largest psychiatric facilities in our state. Since Wendy Halloran's news story on Tony Lester has circulated, Arizona has seemed to have heard the sounding of the alarm, that our mentally disabled must have proper care. Meaningless punishment for a disease of the brain such as schizophrenia does nothing to heal the mind of the afflicted or keep our communities safe. The Tony Lester story has captured the attention of the Maricopa County Attorney and the Arizona Department of Corrections. Both of these important criminal justice players are currently involved in dialogue with The Arizona Mental Health and Criminal Justice Coalition. This has encouraged and promoted an open public discourse on mental health/criminal justice collaboration and reform.
  • The Forgotten

    This story is an inside look at the systematic warehousing of more than 17,000 adults and children in Serbia's mental institutions. Dateline NBC gained unprecedented access to remote, government-run facilities and found alarming and sometimes life-threatening conditions. The institutions are remnants of Serbia's communist past and symbols of a deeply ingrained prejudice against the mentally disabled and their families. Serbia's medical establishment continues to advise parents to put their mentally disabled newborns into institutions, and the government provides virtually no support for those who choose not to. In mental institutions throughout Serbia, Dateline found adults and children crammed into fetid rooms and metal cribs, their bodies emaciated, atrophied and disfigured. Some residents appeared to be children but they were actually young adults whose growth had been stunted by years of institutionalization. One of our most disturbing discoveries came while staying overnight in a dangerously overcrowded institution. There we learned that children are routinely tied to their bed railings for long periods of time - a practice that one disability rights organization says meets the legal definition of torture under international law.
  • Mine Dangers/Mine Safety

    This series on mine safety by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette uncovered several problems: with training, mine seals, ventilation, airpacks and fire suppression systems. Reporters Roddy and Twedt found out that the Mine Safety and Health Administration "narrowed its definition of work-related deaths, making its annual death tally artificially low and allowing them to declare that mining was safer than ever."
  • Exclusive Beach Towns Rely on Government Dollars to Rebuild

    The ever-expanding definition of federal emergencies and the legacy of risky building along the coast have made disasters into a growing industry. Beach towns and resorts benefit from disasters by using tax-payer relief funds as a form of insurance for their municipal property. These resorts and towns carry very little insurance themselves, because they know that they can rely on federal funds to cover storm damage. The average number of federal disasters has tripled since the 1950s; since then, federal agencies have spent $140 billion. Factors such as loose criteria, lax financial standards and golf course subsidies add to the expense.
  • Who's Hispanic?

    A lack of precise definition of the word "hispanic" has caused confusion and some ruffles in the past. The National Journal chronicles the various definitions and approaches to "hispanic" and reasons as to why Alberto Gonzales might be Bush's favorite candidate for the Supreme Court, after all. The author explains in detail why the Portuguese and the Haitians have still not been included under the now-famous umbrella of "hispanics".