Emily Corwin

Reporter

Emily Corwin covers New Hampshire news, and reports on the state's criminal justice system. She's also one of eight dedicated reporters with the New England News Collaborative, a consortium of public media newsrooms across New England. 

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Emily Corwin / NHPR

The Greater Nashua NAACP held its first open meeting in nearly a decade on Wednesday night.

Gloria Timmons founded the group in 2004, and has started it up again after a 10-year hiatus. She says she was motivated by what she called the increasingly hostile political environment. "Kids are being called names, the bullying, people are just saying horrible things to people on the street. All kinds of hideous things," Timmons said, are happening in Nashua and surrounding towns.

Diocese of Manchester, NH

  The head of the Catholic Diocese of Manchester, NH has instructed clergy not to house unauthorized immigrants facing possible deportation.

According to Tom Bebbington, Director of Communications for the Diocese of Manchester, the Bishop had received questions from priests about how to respond to news of increased deportation enforcement. On Friday, the Bishop sent a letter to local church leaders urging them not house unauthorized immigrants in their churches.

Nashua Department of Public Health and Community Services

Nashua’s Health Department wants you to stop using the word “addict.”

“We need to talk about substance use disorder like the disease that it is,” health educator Aly McKnight told a captive audience of thirty or so in the basement of Nashua Public Library last month.  She pointed to a list of “stigmatizing” words projected onto a screen. “Alcoholic,” “junkie,” even “addiction” should be avoided, it said. 

www.edwardsfornh.com

Eddie Edwards, a Republican, has been chief of police for the town of South Hampton, and was the top law enforcement officer for the state’s liquor commission. He announced his bid for New Hampshire's 1st Congressional District on Wednesday. The seat is currently held by Democrat, Carol Shea-Porter.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

In February, the Trump White House directed immigration enforcement to begin detaining and deporting all unauthorized immigrants. This marked a change from Obama-era directives, telling agents to prioritize deporting individuals convicted of serious crimes.

But how do immigration agents find undocumented but otherwise law-abiding immigrants? New England News Collaborative Executive Editor John spoke with reporters Kathleen Masterson from VPR and Emily Corwin of NHPR about big differences between how the states approach working with Federal Immigration officials.

www.harriman.com

  Nashua's Board of Education approved a budget this week that includes full-day kindergarten at all of the city’s schools. Currently, full-day kindergarten is offered at six the city’s twelve elementary schools.

Its expansion has been championed by Jim Donchess, the city’s mayor.

Nashua’s school budget, including funds for full day kindergarten, will now go to the Board of Alderman and then the Board of Education.

About three quarters of towns and cities in New Hampshire offer full day kindergarten.

A delegation of law enforcement and public health workers from Wales visited the Manchester Police Department Tuesday. They were there to learn about a city program that connects children who have experienced trauma with mental health services.

The program trains police officers in the effects of trauma on child development, and coordinates with social workers to help recruit affected families into trauma-therapy and other programs.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

The number of people detained in New Hampshire by federal immigration authorities since Donald Trump took office was greater than the number detained any of the previous six months. 

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Those early hints of spring can call to a gardener like a siren song. Yet the urge to get one’s seeds into dirt can be dangerous: most seedlings won’t survive a single frost. To help with that, gardeners use 30-year averages that predict when the last frost will probably occur. The thing is, in New England, climate change has temperatures rising relatively quickly.

University of New Hampshire

Monday is the vernal equinox: that’s the beginning of spring, according to astronomers. For ecologists, spring isn’t just a matter of the earth’s rotation around the sun.  

  A single class-action lawsuit against Saint-Gobain – a multinational plastics company with a plant in Merrimack – will replace four cases originally filed separately in Federal Court. The plaintiffs all claim Saint-Gobain polluted their drinking water by emitting chemicals known as perfluorichemicals, or PFCs.

A federal judge had ordered the consolidation.

The new, combined lawsuit names 20 plaintiffs, represented by five law firms. They seek compensation for damages including declining property values, medical costs, attorney fees, and numerous other claims.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

  The late winter blizzard led town officials across in New Hampshire to postpone town meetings and elections. It's a decision many people -- but not all -- are happy about.

Brady Carlson for NHPR / NHPR

Health care reform, public education and infrastructure spending are all hot topics in Congress – and the State House – nowadays. In Nashua, New Hampshire’s second largest city, Mayor Jim Donchess has been pushing his own ideas on these very issues. Sometimes, this puts him at odds with the folks calling the shots in Concord and Washington.

Recently, during a class on city government

Emily Corwin / NHPR

New Hampshire correctional officers have declared an impasse in contract negotiations with the Governor’s office.  The Teamsters Union, which represents the officers, say the Governor isn’t doing enough to end years of excessive overtime for staff in the state’s prisons.   

What the parties do seem to agree on is that prisons are critically understaffed. At his budget address last month, Governor Chris Sununu said “we are going to be aggressive and fully fund our corrections system to end the pattern of forced overtime and personnel shortfalls.”

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Not even Mayor Jim Donchess expected the city’s new thirteen-week, twenty-six hour class on city government to fill up so fast.  

“Fifty people seemed like comfortable number,” Donchess said. When those seats filled up quickly,  his office closed registration.

The syllabus includes subjects such as what happens to solid waste, and what tax assessors do.

“Well, I wouldn’t call it dry,” Jay Welch said as students streamed into the city’s auditorium. Like many who showed up, Welch is an avid volunteer.

What’s the appeal? Answers ran the gamut.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

In March of 2016, 26 year-old Jeffrey Pendleton died inside a Manchester, New Hampshire jail. Pendleton was a homeless African-American man charged with possession of a small amount of marijuana. He remained in the Valley Street jail while awaiting trial because he couldn't afford to pay $100 in bail.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Michael Treadwell sat at the back of a courtroom.  In a windbreaker and khaki pants, he leaned over his work boots, elbows on his knees. At first, I thought he was chewing gum – a bold choice in a courtroom.  When we began to talk, I discovered it wasn't gum Michael was chewing.  It was his own gums. Michael doesn't have any teeth.

Emily Corwin for NHPR

As immigration officials ramp up deportation of new classes of unauthorized immigrants, more residents and visitors without documents fear run-ins with police.

On New Hampshire's diverse Southern border, a traffic stop in one town could lead to very different consequences than the same kind of stop one town over.

Ryan Caron King / New England News Collaborative

New Hampshire’s refugee resettlement agencies are moving fast to bring at least six refugees to the state before February 17th. That’s after a Federal Judge on Friday blocked parts of a Trump Administration executive order, including a 120-day ban on refugee admissions, and an indefinite ban on all immigration from Syria.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

While President Trump's recent executive order on refugees and immigrants has caused much concern across New Hampshire, there are also plenty of folks in the state who are happy with the new president's first decisive actions. 

Emily Corwin / NHPR

There’s to be no more kissing, and no hugs lasting more than three seconds in New Hampshire’s prison visiting rooms as of this week. The policy change is part of an effort to curb rampant drug smuggling into the prison.

Ceyhun (Jay) Isik / https://flic.kr/p/cG7qFL

Preliminary results are in from blood testing provided to Southern New Hampshire residents exposed to contaminated well-water.

The contamination was discovered last March, in ground water near a plastics plant in Merrimack, called Saint-Gobain. Blood tests began in June, and now the first 147 results are in.

The contaminant is not well understood, so it makes sense to interpret the results by comparison.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration, signed Friday, has stirred anxiety and uncertainty among refugees and those who work with them. In New Hampshire’s biggest city, Muktar Osman is in the middle of it.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

New Hampshire Lawmakers filed into the State House cafeteria Thursday for some free international food. Like it or not, their meal came with a side of conversation -- about how immigrants benefit New Hampshire.

Railroad Crossing
Photo by Tim Cummins via Flickr Creative Commons

Should lawmakers dissolve the unfunded, volunteer-run New Hampshire Rail Transit Authority? That was the question at a House Transportation Committee public hearing Wednesday. 

Last spring, lawmakers voted not to pursue preliminary steps to connect rail line from Boston to southern NH. Now, Republican House member Neal Kurk of Weare told the House Transportation Committee  he wants to eradicate the unfunded group of volunteers tasked by lawmakers with overseeing rail development in New Hampshire.

The organization that resettles refugees in Manchester says it’s ready to take action against an executive order likely to be announced by the Trump administration Thursday. Nearly 450 refugees were resettled in New Hampshire last year.

Allegra Boverman

Over 100 people gathered on Manchester’s West side Monday evening for a vigil after racist signs were found in the city last week.

In the chilly damp evening at Rock Rimmon Park, people held hands in a circle. Some wore headscarves; others the red jackets of Americorps City Year, a group that works in Manchester’s public schools.

They were there because last week, signs were found near two schools and a bridge in Manchester that read “diversity is a code word for white genocide.”

Emily Corwin / NHPR

For 35 years, the Martin Luther King Coalition has hosted a celebration of the late civil rights leader’s birthday in Manchester. Some at this year’s event said now more than ever - King’s Legacy must not be forgotten.

Early in her invocation, Meriden’s United Church of Christ Reverend, Gail Kinney, zeroed in on current events.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Updated on Jan. 13, 2017 at 5:07 PM:

Visiting hours will return to normal on Saturday at the state prison for men. Inmate visits were halted earlier this week after a series of likely drug overdoses left one man dead.

In the meantime, the department says it is investigating the type, source, and entry point of the drugs that caused the following three incidents.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Over the summer, Nashua aldermen voted to make Nashua a sister city with Mysore, India - a city 100 miles southwest of Bangalore.

Now, a local Rotary Club is sending a group of four Americans there.  

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