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PNS Daily Newscast - March 5, 2021 


New rules should speed large-scale clean-energy projects in NY; Texas' Gov. Abbott tries to shift COVID blame to release of "immigrants."


2021Talks - March 5, 2021 


A marathon Senate session begins to pass COVID relief; Sanders plans a $15 minimum wage amendment; and work continues to approve Biden's cabinet choices.

Public News Service - IA: Social Justice

Just like other state legislatures, Iowa's General Assembly has seen routine debate on bills LGTBQ advocates say unfairly target their community, while conservative lawmakers push religious and personal-freedom proposals. (Adobe Stock)

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- The current legislative session in Iowa has seen the return of debate over LGBTQ rights, while conservative lawmakers seek protections for political ideology. Among bills introduced this year is a measure that would block gender-affirming care for transgender youths. That comes

Nationally, the American Heart Association says it plans to raise $230 million to help achieve health equity. (Adobe Stock)

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DES MOINES, Iowa - Health disparities in the United States are getting more attention, between the pandemic and last year's social-justice protests. In Iowa, certain barriers are being addressed, including mistrust of health agencies and providers. State health officials have said Iowa mirrors nati

Among the many forms of elder abuse, advocates for older Iowans say financial exploitation is among the most common, and they don't think Iowa laws are strong enough to help victims. (Adobe Stock)

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- As the new Iowa legislative session kicks off today, advocates for seniors hope lawmakers take another look at elder abuse and do more to prevent it. When the 2020 session abruptly ended in March because of COVID, the momentum evaporated for a bill to create a new criminal offen

An Iowa faith leader says the nation's overall history with racism played a role in Wednesday's riots at the U.S. Capitol. (Adobe Stock)

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NEW HAMPTON, Iowa -- In the wake of Wednesday's riots at the U.S. Capitol, an Iowa pastor said the country needs to fully address its past so it can move on from tensions he feels are tied to white privilege. From social media to political commentators, observations were made about how the mostly-w

Prior to an executive order signed by Gov. Kim Reynolds this summer, Iowa was the only state to prohibit those with past felony convictions from voting. (Adobe Stock)

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IOWA CITY, Iowa - Prior to the November election, Iowans with past felony convictions were given the opportunity to vote. However, only a small number registered, and advocates point to a short timeframe, while hoping for more outreach in future elections. Late this summer, Gov. Kim Reynolds signe

Through various executive orders over the past 15 years, Iowa has seen several reversals of voting rights for people with past felony convictions. (Adobe Stock)

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- Iowa no longer is the last state to prohibit anyone with a past felony conviction from voting, after Gov. Kim Reynolds signed an order restoring those rights. But advocates for this group of voters feel it doesn't go far enough. The executive order follows up on a promise Reynol

The Americans with Disabilities Act, signed by President George H. W.  Bush in 1990, is considered the benchmark law guaranteeing civil protections for those with disabilities. (Adobe Stock)

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- Many people living with disabilities say becoming a self-advocate is one of the benefits afforded by laws such as the Americans with Disabilities Act, which took effect 30 years ago this month. The milestone anniversary officially occurs on July 26th, and it's being celebrated

Advocates say while society has become more accepting of gays and lesbians, there's still a lot of backlash toward those who identify as transgender. (Adobe Stock)

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- Advocates for equal rights on Monday were handed a major victory by the U.S. Supreme Court which said federal law protects LGBTQ individuals from workplace discrimination. An Iowa group said it hopes the ruling will give an immediate boost to the transgender community. Courtney

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