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 "suffering" ...

  • Coal's Deadly Dust

    This NPR/Frontline investigation of an epidemic of a fatal lung disease affecting more than 2,000 coal miners used 30 years of government data and internal agency memos to show that federal agency officials knew more than 20 years ago that coal miners were exposed to toxic silica dust, and were suffering severe lung disease, but did not act then or since to directly address silica exposure in coal mines.
  • Lasting Scars

    Prisoners waterboarded and tortured by the U.S. suffered enduring wounds — flashbacks, nightmares, depression, headaches — without ever being properly treated.
  • Suffering in Secret

    Illinois steered thousands of its poorest and most vulnerable adults with disabilities into less expensive private group homes and cloaked harm and death with secrecy and silence. The Tribune exposed flawed investigations (two cases were reopened) and revealed how Illinois had publicly undercounted abuse and neglect cases for five years. The Tribune identified 1,311 cases of harm since July 2011 and tracked at least 42 deaths in group homes or their day programs over the last seven years. Additionally, the Tribune uncovered a secretive state practice that allowed group home employees to police their own businesses. The Tribune also detailed a state auction in which group home executives raised hands to select individuals with disabilities to be moved from state facilities into the community. For the first time, the Tribune circumvented state secrecy to show that many group homes were underfunded, understaffed and dangerously unprepared for new arrivals with complex needs.
  • Driven to death by phone scammers

    It started with a call from Jamaica and ended in a suicide in a Tennessee basement. In between, Albert Poland Jr. had sent tens of thousands of dollars to the man on the phone promising millions. At 81 and suffering from dementia, Poland had fallen victim to a lottery scam that costs thousands of Americans an estimated $300 million annually -- and has turned deadly in both countries.
  • Crumbling Foundations

    NBC Connecticut's Investigative team, the Troubleshooters, exposed a consumer protection failure unlike any other previously reported in Connecticut. Our investigation revealed hundreds of homeowners in the northeast section of our state are suffering incredible emotional and financial distress as they watch the concrete foundations supporting their homes crumble. Insurance companies deny their claims and the only option they have to fix the problem is to replace their foundations. That costs them into the hundreds of thousands of dollars. The Troubleshooters discovered there were warning signs and complaints years ago that got little attention from the state. During the years that have followed, the foundations continued to crack and deteriorate. And all cases we’ve covered appear to have a common connection: the same concrete supply company https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGULaeR47ZE&feature=youtu.be
  • China in Africa: How Sam Pa became The Middleman

    FT correspondent Tom Burgis in 2014 examined the case of one deal-maker - a mysterious man from Hong Kong known as Sam Pa - to explain and explore the ambitions behind the China-Africa connection. The trail of reporting began in 2009 as Mr. Burgis, then the FT's West Africa correspondent, revealed the details of a deal between an obscure Chinese company named China International Fund and the murderous junta that had seized power in the long-suffering nation of Guinea.
  • A Path to Survival

    This journalism investigation presented by Studio Monitor covers the issue of tuberculosis in Georgia. The number of patients suffering from active forms of tuberculosis in Georgia is growing. Georgia is among the 27 countries with the highest rates of extremely drug-resistant tuberculosis. In our country, only half of the patients suffering this type of tuberculosis are cured. The authorities are late in making important decisions. In the meantime, people are dying. Some patients travel to Europe to save their lives. At the Georgian Center of Tuberculosis, contagious patients are allowed to go home or go out into the streets for a walk. This causes to spread the disease even more. The doctors at the Tuberculosis Center often make mistaken diagnoses. They permit people to enter the treatment program easily, even if the diagnosis of tuberculosis is not certain. 34 percent of multi-drug resistant TB patients in Georgia in 2013 gave up on treatment because of the unbearable side effects. Patients who were released from the Georgian TB program after showing no improvement for two years were cured by doctors after they went to Europe.
  • Veterans Disability Claims

    Yvonne Wenger’s story for The Baltimore Sun examined the disability claims backlog at the Baltimore office of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Through her reporting and use of an online database, she discovered that the Baltimore office, which services all of Maryland, had the worst backlog in the country and made the most mistakes. Servicemen and women in Maryland were waiting an average of 12 months for an initial decision about benefits; in some cases, it could take years more to receive the payments. Yvonne reached out to dozens of veterans but found that all were fearful to speak to a reporter because they thought doing so would affect their claims. She eventually did find a combat veteran, Robert Fearing, who was willing to be interviewed. He was suffering from paranoia and anxiety and had been waiting 2 ½ years for the Baltimore office to make a decision about his claim. After publication of the article, reaction from Maryland’s congressional delegation was swift. Sens. Barbara Mikulski and Ben Cardin both took action to seek changes locally and nationally to address the backlog. And just days after the article was published, Fearing had his claim reviewed and approved.
  • Deadly Delays

    Nearly every baby born in the United States has blood collected within a day or two of birth to be screened for dozens of genetic disorders. Each year, newborn screening is credited with saving or improving the lives of more than 12,000 babies in the United States. The entire premise of newborn screening is to detect disorders quickly so babies can be treated early, averting death and preventing or limiting brain damage, disability and a lifetime of costly medical care. The investigation found that thousands of hospitals — and dozens of state agencies that oversee the programs — are failing America’s children due to an ineffective and unaccountable newborn screening system wracked by deadly delays. As a result, children who should be diagnosed and treated shortly after birth are suffering preventable brain damage, disability and even death — as if they had been born decades before today’s screening tests and treatments were available. In an analysis of nearly 3 million newborn screening tests from throughout the country, the Journal Sentinel found that hundreds of thousands of blood samples from newborn babies arrive late at labs where they are to be tested. Despite very clear and dramatic warnings to send blood samples to state labs within 24 hours, many hospitals don’t comply, and instead wait days and then send blood samples in batches, saving a few dollars in postage. Problem hospitals throughout the country face no consequences and often are not even notified they are putting babies’ lives at risk.
  • 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.