Wisconsin Watch

Marathon County, WIPosted by
Wisconsin Watch

Wisconsin Weekly: ‘A community for all’ resolution reveals Marathon County’s divide

Inclusiveness backlash; housing crisis roots; commuter train push; Indigenous language revitalization; broadband troubles. Of note: Today we highlight a New York Times reporter’s first-person account of how his coverage seemed to deepen a rift in Marathon County, where a resolution to declare the county a “community for all” sparked backlash from some residents. While supporters view the resolution as an innocuous step to acknowledge structural inequities and welcome residents outside of the county’s 91% white majority, some critics argue that acknowledging racial disparities is racist itself. Reid J. Epstein, a former Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter, writes that shining a national spotlight on the tension had ripple effects.
Wisconsin StatePosted by
Wisconsin Watch

Wisconsin Weekly: Affordable housing ‘crisis’ upends lives in northeastern Wisconsin

Housing woes; COVID deaths at food plant; assault in prison; abating lead in Milwaukee; racism as public health crisis. Of note: This week we highlight the Green Bay Press-Gazette’s examination of the human and economic impact of northeastern Wisconsin’s lack of affordable housing. Reporter Jeff Bollier tells the story of Amber Edwards, who faced a years-long crisis beginning in 2018 after her landlord sold the duplex she shared with her 2-year-old daughter and her daughter’s father, thrusting the family into a fruitless search for an affordable place to live. Even a new job couldn’t help Edwards avoid homelessness before she emerged from poverty with help from a church program. “I got a raise,” Edwards told Bollier, “and it launched me into another spiral where my rent and FoodShare benefits dropped off immediately. My responsibility for (health care) and rent went up over $600. I lost my food benefits and most of my child care.” The story was produced for the NEW News Lab (Northeast Wisconsin News Lab), a new Microsoft-funded collaborative that provides technology support, capacity building and additional funding to boost local journalism and newsrooms. Wisconsin Watch is a member of the collaborative.
Milwaukee County, WIPosted by
Wisconsin Watch

How Milwaukee County set the stage for tackling racism as a public health crisis

This piece was produced for the NEW News Lab, a local news collaboration in Northeast Wisconsin. A version of this story first appeared on Madison365. In 2017, Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele appointed Nicole Brookshire to lead the county’s Office on African American Affairs (OAAA). At OAAA, Brookshire would join a movement to acknowledge racism and oppression through concrete policy change.
La Crosse, WIPosted by
Wisconsin Watch

‘We’re starting to be able to feel safe being together’: La Crosse teacher Julie Welch reflects on freedoms brought by vaccination

Outbreak Wisconsin is collaborative series, produced in partnership with Wisconsin Public Radio, that chronicles a variety of Wisconsin residents as they navigate life during the coronavirus pandemic. https://wisconsinwatch.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/nws210602-HK-OBWJULIE.mp3. Listen to Julie Welch’s third audio diary, produced by Hope Kirwan for WPR. The coronavirus pandemic turned Julie Welch’s work life upside...
PoliticsPosted by
Wisconsin Watch

Bar lawmakers from destroying records

If you want to see all of the emails your mayor received and sent during the week of March 16-20, 2020, to find communications regarding the coronavirus outbreak, all you have to do is ask. Under state law, the mayor is required to retain these and provide them on request.