Hey everyone, welcome back to What a week!, I’m your host, Olivia Lee, here to deliver your weekly dose of the news. Let’s get started!
In Local News:
• Last Wednesday, the Portland City Council voted unanimously to change the wording of a proposal to grant wide latitude on sitting temporary housing for homeless individuals to make clear that parks, green spaces and park parking lots are off limits. The change came as Portland City Council members continued to clarify proposed rule changes to allow tiny house pods, tent encampments and other forms of shelter for people experiencing homelessness throughout the city. The council also voted last Wednesday to extend the state of housing emergency for another year. This state of housing emergency, first declared in 2015, allows the city to drastically waive zoning codes to keep current alternative shelters operating and allow more to pop up if needed.
• Last week, Oregon officials noticed a spike in COVID cases in the state. Despite a rising number of vaccinated Oregonians and widening eligibility, governor Kate Brown said in a statement quote “the fourth surge of the virus is at our doorstep,” Fortunately, Brown said, Oregon hasn’t matched some other state’s large spikes in cases, but quote “our numbers are rising, and we’re back on alert.” Despite the contamination that destroyed 15 million doses of the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine, increased shipments allowed Brown to announce that family members of frontline workers newly eligible for the vaccine are now also eligible for the vaccine as of last week. When grocery workers and other frontline workers make their appointments, Brown urged them to quote “make them for your entire family – adults of course.” Last Friday, Oregon also expanded its criteria of “underlying conditions” to match the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s list.
In National News:https://www.cnn.com/2021/04/03/health/us-coronavirus-saturday/index.html
• In Covid news… last saturday, the U.S. hit 4 million Covid-19 vaccine doses in a day for a new record. More than 4 million doses of the coronavirus vaccine were reported on Saturday, setting a new record and bringing the seven-day average to more than 3 million vaccine doses a day, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported. It has been nearly 109 days since the first Covid-19 vaccine shot was administered in the US, and 104 million people have since received at least one dose, the agency said. More than 59 million of them are fully vaccinated. More than 161 million doses have been administered in the US, according to agency data published last weekend.
• Last Friday the CDC released a new updated guidance regarding COVID-19, stating that vaccinated people can safely travel. Fully vaccinated people must continue to oblige with other COVID-19 safety precautions such as wearing a mask in public and social distancing. Release of the long-expected guidelines comes as U.S. COVID-19 vaccinations have increased nationwide and as the summer travel season approaches. People are considered fully protected by the vaccines two weeks after their second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech vaccines, or two weeks after their single shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Masks are still required on planes, buses, and trains under the CDC guidelines, as well as in airports and other travel hubs.
• Last Friday, a U.S. Capitol officer was killed and another injured after a suspect drove his vehicle into them and then emerged armed with a knife, authorities said. After ramming his vehicle, the suspect got out of the car “with a knife in hand” and started to “lunge toward” the officers, authorities said. He was then shot by at least one officer and later died of his injuries. President Joe Biden said in a statement that he was “heartbroken” to learn of the attack and that he had ordered the White House flags to be lowered to half-mast. Biden issued a statement saying quote “We know what a difficult time this has been for the Capitol, everyone who works there, and those who protect it.” Robert Contee, acting chief of the Metropolitan Police Department, told reporters there did not appear to be an ongoing threat after last Friday’s attack, but said investigators were still looking for a possible motive.
In International News:
• Last Friday, a train partially derailed in eastern Taiwan after colliding with an unmanned vehicle that had rolled down a hill, killing 48 people. With the train still partly in a tunnel, survivors climbed out of windows and walked along the train’s roof to reach safety after the country’s deadliest railway disaster. The crash occurred near the Toroko Gorge scenic area on the first day of a long holiday weekend when many people were hopping trains on Taiwan’s extensive rail system. The train had been carrying more than 400 people. The National Fire Service confirmed the death toll, which included the train’s young, newly married driver, and said all aboard had now been accounted for. More than 100 people have been reported to be injured. Railways news officer Weng Hui-ping called the crash Taiwan’s deadliest rail disaster.
Lastly here is the wildcard news for the week:https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/31/nyregion/cuomo-ny-legal-weed.html
• Last week, New York became the latest U.S. state to legalize recreational weed making it legal for anyone over 21 to possess up to three ounces of weed in New York, as well as up to 24 grams of concentrated cannabis, such as oils. It’s also now legal to smoke and use marijuana in public, anywhere smoking tobacco is allowed.
Closing: Well that wraps up What a Week! Stay safe and see you guys next week.