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Oct 29, 2020

Jobless Claims Fall to 751,000, But New Infections a Threat

Applications for unemployment aid fell 40,000 from the previous week, the Labor Department said. They fell in 30 states, including big drops in California, Florida and Texas. But claims rose significantly in Arizona, Illinois and Michigan.

Oct 28, 2020

Voting at Cook County Jail Sees 40% Turnout for General Election

There is little that’s normal about the 2020 election, including the fact that this is the first election cycle in which detainees can cast ballots at Cook County Jail. 

Oct 28, 2020

Chronicling the Unhappy Lives of America’s First Ladies

The Neo-Futurists go virtual with “45 Plays for America’s First Ladies,” a 100-minute world premiere collage created by the company of writer-directors that was established in Chicago in 1988.

Oct 28, 2020

Indigenous Artist Takes Painting Class Online for Cross-Cultural Exchange

Every year, Indigenous artist Carlos Orozco travels to Chicago from Oaxaca, Mexico, to lead workshops on painting alebrijes. We check out this year’s virtual offering. 

Oct 28, 2020

Chicago Bar, Restaurant Owners Face Uncertain Future as Restrictions Return

Surging COVID-19 infection rates triggered new restrictions that will take effect Friday in Chicago. What that means for the small business owners who can no longer serve diners and drinkers indoors.

Oct 28, 2020

New Documentary Series ‘City So Real’ Profiles Chicago at a Crossroads

For more than a year, documentary filmmaker Steve James and his collaborators fanned out across Chicago at a pivotal moment. James tells us about the resulting five-part series that premieres this week on NatGeo and Hulu.

Oct 28, 2020

Elimination of Library Fines Pays Off, Library Officials Tell Aldermen

Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s decision to eliminate library fines in order to coax patrons back to the Chicago Public Library has paid off in spades, aldermen heard Wednesday.

Oct 28, 2020

Spotlight Politics: Pritzker Surprises Lightfoot with COVID-19 Rollbacks

A pandemic rollback battle plays out between Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot as Election Day draws near. Our politics team takes on those stories and more in this week’s roundtable. 

Oct 28, 2020

Social Media CEOs Get Earful on Bias, Warning of New Limits

With next week’s election looming, the CEOs of Twitter, Facebook and Google received a hectoring from Republicans at a Senate hearing Wednesday for alleged anti-conservative bias in the companies’ social media platforms.

Oct 28, 2020

Another Ratings Agency Sounds Alarm About Chicago’s Budget

A second Wall Street ratings agency sounded the alarm over Chicago’s budget on Wednesday as aldermen continued weighing Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s $12.76 billion spending plan for 2021.

Oct 28, 2020

South Side Coalition Tells Obama Center Obstructionists: Enough Is Enough

Opponents of the Obama Presidential Center care more about trees and traffic than they do about people impacted by decades of systemic disinvestment, proponents of the project said in an open letter.

Oct 28, 2020

Shomari Legghette Sentenced to Life in Prison for Murder of CPD Cmdr. Paul Bauer

A jury found the defendant guilty in March on each of the six charges he faced: two counts of first-degree murder, two counts of first-degree murder of a peace officer and two counts of armed violence.

Oct 28, 2020

North Suburbs Hit with COVID-19 Restrictions Starting on Halloween

By the end of the week, Chicago and the surrounding suburbs will be operating under tightened rules designed to stop the spread of the coronavirus, including a suspension of indoor services at bars and restaurants.

Oct 28, 2020

Lightfoot: I Didn’t Ask For ‘Special Treatment’ from Pritzker During COVID-19 Surge

Mayor Lori Lightfoot says she spoke with Gov. J.B. Pritzker for about an hour on Wednesday, a day after the serious split between the officials leading the effort to stem the pandemic spilled into public view.

Oct 28, 2020

Pandemic Creates Challenges, Opportunities for Doulas, Expectant Families

Doulas are trained to provide support to pregnant women during labor and delivery. But the arrival of COVID-19 has changed that hands-on relationship to one that relies on virtual connections.