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

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Search results for "Los Angeles" ...

  • Thanks to Utah politicians and the 2002 Olympics, a blizzard of federal money - a stunning $1.5 billion - has fallen on the state, enriching some already wealthy businessmen

    A Sports Illustrated investigation looks at the federal spending for the Olympic Games in Salt Lake City in 2002. The magazine estimates the amount of the spending at $1.5 billion by analyzing data from the General Accounting Office, and various federal and Utah state agencies. No federal agency or official is responsible for monitoring the spending, the story reveals. The key finding is that a millionaire developer, a billionaire ski-resort owner, and even a church are benefitting from infrastructure and security projects to which the magic word 'Olympics' is attached. The article compares the 2002 Games spending to what the government paid for previous Olympics in Lake Placid, Los Angeles, and Atlanta.
  • Who Needs a Prescription

    Los Angeles Times Magazine looks at the trend of prescription drugs going over the counter, and finds that this poses risks to patients. For example, chronic pains sufferers are prone to gastric disorders because they often take the popular analgesic ibuprofen, or medications that have it as an active ingredient, the story reveals. The reporter examines cases of people who sued pharmaceutical giants like Johnson and Johnson because its product Tylenol turned out to cause catastrophic liver failures. A major finding is that drug manufacturers often fail to warn customers that some medications interfere with the efficacy of other drugs, if taken at the same time. The article describes FDA's drug testing and auditing procedures.
  • Policing the Police

    The American Prospect reports on police abuse of citizens and examines the potential of civil law to influence police practices. The story points to trends nationwide, but focuses mostly on cases in Los Angeles. The major examples include recent successful lawsuits on behalf of people bitten by police dogs, and some controversial shootings by sheriff's deputies in Los Angeles County. There is a "baffling disconnect" between lawsuits and police internal investigations, the story reveals. The author finds that a possible solution to the problem could come from nonprofit legal groups in every city, which would take on individual police abuse cases.
  • Hot asphalt

    Los Angeles Times Magazine looks at the potential health hazards that residents of Shoshone, California, may face, if 127 California becomes the state's busiest transportation route for nuclear radioactive waste. The story reveals the concerns of local environmentalists that radioactive waste shippers are inevitably going to be in accidents. The reporter also cites property owners, who find that the converting the highway into a waste tract will have bad effect on local businesses.
  • RUN, Don't Walk

    The New Times reports on pedestrian safety -- the lack of it -- in Los Angeles. Los Angeles is second only to New York in pedestrian fatalities, and has far fewer pedestrians. Portland has six city employees that deal with pedestrian safety and planning, Los Angeles has none. Other problems include confusion over right-of-way at unmarked crosswalks, a shrinking number of traffic enforcement officers, clogged freeways that push extra traffic into arterial roads and road rage. Due to legal quirks, Los Angeles even had to raise the speed limit on one of the streets it wanted to slow down in order to be legally able to use radar detectors to catch speeders.
  • Death Without A Ripple

    The Los Angeles Times Magazine reports on just one of L.A. County's Jane or John Does that the medical examiners office tries to match with an identity each year. Jane Doe #59 was found in a gully, strangled to death and afterwards burned. No one ever called to claim her and she was never matched to any missing persons reports. Eventually she was cremated and placed into a grave simply marked "1996" in the county cemetery.
  • Youthful Peddlers Swindled

    Los Angeles Times reports on "a burgeoning child labor practice that ... exploits youngsters, even exposing them to fatal accidents." The story points to statistics showing that every day an estimated 50,000 minors, some as young as 8, peddle goods throughout the country. The report reveals that teen recruiters target low-income black and Latino neighborhoods, as well as schools, and rarely pay the hired children even a part of the promised wage.
  • A Clean Sweep

    The American Prospect reports on the janitors' strike in Los Angeles in April 2000, and explains how janitors' international union, SEIU, helped them to get a wage increase of about 26%. The story looks at various labor markets and sectors of economy and examines their unions' attempts achieving pay raises. The report details the unionization of security screeners at airports, hotel workers, health care workers and nursing home workers. "In service industries that can't flee, unionization of low-wage workers can triumph, but only with heroic effort," finds the magazine.
  • The Living-Wage Wars

    Governing reports on cities that have adopted living-wage standards above the federal minimum wage laws. Living-wage standards, while serving as a rallying point for labor-minded organizations, only help the small number employees of government contractors -- 8,000 out of 3.5 million people in Los Angeles. Supporters contend that the improve individual lives and are one step towards raising overall consciousness about the working poor.
  • How California Failed Kevin Evans

    The Los Angeles Times Magazine investigates the death of Kevin Evans, a mentally ill African-American who died of alleged cardiac arrest in Twin Towers' jail, "the largest mental-health housing facility in the nation." The story reveals that Evans' medical records have been falsified, and that he was subject to violence by the hospital staff before his death occurred. The article reports on the wrongful death claims submitted by Evans' sisters and the resulting $600,000 award in settlement. A major finding is that L.A. county has provided no safety net for mentally-ill homeless people, who "at least for the present, are the responsibility of the sheriff." The reporter also looks at the "acute problems" that have persisted in Twin Towers for many years.