Stories by blair paddock

City Introduces Equitable Transit-Oriented Development Plan

(WTTW News)

Previous plans have largely targeted Chicago’s North and Northwest sides. However, officials say this plan will focus on bringing equitable transit-oriented developments to the South and West sides.

State Ban on Evictions Set to Expire Next Week

(WTTW News)

For thousands of Illinois renters who are out of work during the pandemic, the threat of eviction is getting closer to reality.

Black People More Likely Get Colon Cancer in Cook County

(Darko Stojanovic / Pixabay)

In Cook County, Black people are 26% more likely to get colon and rectum cancer than white people, according to the CDC. “Screening rates a bit lower, but they’re not that much lower,” said Dr. Ed McDonald, a gastroenterologist. “There’s something else going on.”

How New Delegates are Celebrating the Virtual Republican National Convention

First-time delegate Kevin Suggs appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2020. (WTTW News)

Many Republican delegates will be watching the convention from their couches this week, missing the usual excitement of an in-person event. We check in with two first-time delegates for their impressions so far.

Schakowsky: US Postal Service Should Reverse Changes

Joe Biden formally accepts the Democratic nomination for president, capping off a convention that has seen blistering criticism of President Trump and an emphasis on the emergence of women as leaders. We discuss that and more with U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky.

Cook County Data Shows Disparities in Delinquent Houses

(WTTW News)

Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas talks about the disparities in delinquent houses and how she’s working to reduce the problem. 

How New Delegates are Celebrating the Virtual Democratic National Convention

First-time delegate Krystal Garcia Centeno appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Tuesday, Aug. 18, 2020. (WTTW News)

What’s it like to be a first-time delegate celebrating this year’s virtual convention? We ask Melissa Conyears-Ervin, the Chicago city treasurer, and Krystal Garcia Centeno, a member of the Progressive Turnout Project.

Chicago Archdiocese Plans to Provide In-Person Classes This Fall

(Brandis Friedman / WTTW News)

CPS will start the school year with an all-remote learning plan, but Catholic schools in the city and suburbs are taking a different approach. How will the school system keep everyone safe, and are teachers and parents on board?

The Future of Retail: Where Do Stores Stand After Pandemic, Looting?

A makeshift sign announces a temporary business closure following looting in downtown Chicago in the early hours of Monday, Aug. 10, 2020. (WTTW News)

There’s a very real anxiety that Chicago’s main shopping districts are on the precipice of falling apart. And without the revenue generated from those areas, the city faces a potentially disastrous fiscal future.

A Look at Voting Issues On the Voting Rights Act’s 55th Anniversary

Thursday marks the 55th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act. Where the fight for ballot access goes next.

Lurie Children’s Hospital to End Intersex Surgeries on Children

Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago (WTTW News)

Where the fight for intersex rights is headed after a recent victory in Chicago. We speak with activist Pidgeon Pagonis and Dr. Ellie Kim of Lurie Children’s Hospital.

Colleges Drop ACT, SAT Test Score Requirements Due to Pandemic

(lil_foot_ / Pixabay)

Standardized college entrance tests like the ACT and SAT may soon be a thing of the past. More than half of all U.S. colleges and universities have dropped the requirement for ACT and SAT scores due to the coronavirus pandemic.

How Chicago Hospitals are Engaging in Anti-Violence Work

(WTTW News)

Hospitals are on the front lines of healing gun violence victims, but some are taking more than just an emergency room role. We learn about the Chicago Hospital Engagement, Action and Leadership Initiative, or HEAL.

A Conversation with Audra Wilson, New CEO of Shriver Center on Poverty Law

Audra Wilson, CEO of the Shriver Center on Poverty Law, appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Monday, June 15, 2020. (WTTW News)

Amid a pandemic and a renewed focus on police brutality, some say the center’s work is more critical than ever. We speak with the newly appointed president and CEO of the Chicago-based nonprofit.

‘Hood Feminism’ and Police Brutality: A Conversation with Mikki Kendall

Author Mikki Kendall appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Tuesday, June 9, 2020. (WTTW News)

We discuss the role of feminists in the fight against racism and police brutality with the author of “Hood Feminism: Notes from the Women that the Movement Forgot.”

Pride With No Parade: LGBTQ Organizations Celebrate Amid Pandemic

The 2014 Chicago Pride Parade. (Jamie Bernstein / Flickr)

With a global pandemic and ongoing protests against police brutality, LGBTQ organizations are returning to their revolutionary roots as they celebrate Pride Month.

A Grieving Community Again Calls for Police Reform in Chicago

Laquan McDonald’s great-uncle, the Rev. Marvin Hunter, appears on “Chicago Tonight” in 2018. (WTTW News)

A conversation with the Rev. Martin Hunter, the great uncle of Laquan McDonald, whose fatal shooting by a Chicago police officer in 2014 sparked widespread calls for police reform.

How Dentists Are Adapting to the Pandemic

Dentists are wearing more personal protective equipment in the COVID-19 era. (WTTW News)

After two months of performing only emergency procedures, dentist offices in Illinois are now fully reopening. But the experience will be very different — for both patients and dentists.

The Debate Over Reopening Places of Worship

The Metro Praise International Church in Chicago’s Belmont Cragin neighborhood. (WTTW News)

While Chicago is in phase two of its plan to reopen, churches are allowed to have 10 or fewer people inside the building during services. But some churches are defying that rule, and want to reopen immediately.

Is It Safe for Child Care Centers to Reopen Sooner Than Expected?

(ponce_photography / Pixabay)

Businesses across the state are preparing for an eventual reopening under the governor’s Restore Illinois plan, but some industries fear the plan moves too slowly, including child care centers.

Illinois’ Comptroller on How COVID-19 is Affecting the State Budget

Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza appears on “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Thursday, May 7, 2020. (WTTW News)

Illinois has spent more than $238 million on resources related to the pandemic, even entering into occasional bidding wars with other states for supplies. We ask Illinois Comptroller Susana Mendoza about state spending — and budget shortfalls.

How Plasma From Recovered COVID-19 Patients Could Offer a Cure

Weiss Memorial Hospital (WTTW News)

Researchers are studying the use of convalescent plasma therapy — and it’s already showing positive results at Weiss Memorial Hospital in Uptown.

Custodial Workers Ask for Hazard Pay: ‘We Are Front-Line Workers’

(WTTW News)

Custodial workers are on the front lines of the coronavirus, but some of them say they’re not being treated as such. We speak with two workers who have more than 40 years of combined experience at Stroger Hospital.

Online Observance: Mosques Move Celebrations Online for Ramadan

(AhmadArdity / Pixabay)

The monthlong celebration of Ramadan begins this week. What’s supposed to be a month of fasting and reflection while surrounded by family is instead marked by social distancing. How one local mosque is celebrating.

Protesters in Illinois Call for Stay-at-Home Order to be Canceled

Participants in rallies in several U.S. states calling for the reopening of the economy have ignored social distancing guidelines. (WTTW News via CNN)

Calls to reopen the state’s economy are fueling a nationwide protest. We talk with an organizer behind a local effort.

Lessons on Remote Learning from a Hong Kong Educator

Josh Blue, a vice principal at English Schools Foundation Kennedy School in Hong Kong, speaks with “Chicago Tonight” via Zoom on Monday, April 13, 2020. (WTTW News)

Chicago Public Schools has just started its remote learning program, but schools in other cities have been holding virtual classes for weeks. We speak with a Palatine native who is the vice principal at a school nearly 8,000 miles away.