‘Respect the Pillow’
by Bentley Freeman | FREE SPEECH PLAZA VENDORS SUCCESSFULLY NEGOTIATED TO KEEP THEIR CANOPIES
by Ella Hutcherson | 4J HIGH SCHOOLS WILL RUN ON A DIFFERENT — AND CONTROVERSIAL — SCHEDULE NEXT YEAR
‘Security Through Obscurity’
by Bentley Freeman, Alexis Weisend, and Evan Weston | PROPOSED RULES BEFORE THE EUGENE CITY COUNCIL MAY MAKE IT MORE DIFFICULT FOR UNHOUSED PEOPLE TO FIND A LEGAL PLACE TO CAMP WITHOUT FACING HIGHER FINES — OR EVEN JAIL
No Place for Hate
by Ella Hutcherson | STUDENTS AT SPENCER BUTTE MIDDLE SCHOOL INCITE CHANGE TO 4J SAFETY REPORTING PROCESS
Position One, Politicized
by Ella Hutcherson | TWO CANDIDATES FOR 4J SCHOOL BOARD SPELL OUT THEIR PRIORITIES, INTERESTS FOR STUDENTS
Eugene Human Rights Commission Presses City on Rapid Eviction of Unhoused Campers
by Alexis Weisend | CITY HAS BEEN GIVING UNHOUSED CAMPERS IN PARKS TWO HOURS TO MOVE, DODGING A STATE LAW REQUIRING 72-HOUR NOTICE
Slashing Animal Services
by Bentley Freeman | EUGENE’S ANIMAL SHELTER TO LOSE 56 PERCENT OF ITS FUNDING FROM THE CITY
Fast and Furious
by Alexis Weisend | THE CITY OF EUGENE HAS QUIETLY GIVEN MORE THAN 1,300 UNHOUSED CAMPERS ONLY TWO HOURS’ NOTICE TO MOVE INSTEAD OF 72 HOURS
Union Pacific’s Trash Problem
by Bentley Freeman, Evan Weston and Hannah Seibold | DEBRIS FROM HOMELESS CAMPS ON UNION PACIFIC PROPERTY LITTERS THE WILLAMETTE. AFTER YEARS OF DELAY, THE CITY HITS THE COMPANY WITH BIG FINES
by Anna Kaminski and Winter Wagner | A CRISIS STABILIZATION CENTER IN LANE COUNTY COULD MEAN LEAVING BEHIND A SYSTEM RIDDLED WITH GAPS. BUT FIRST, THE COUNTY MUST ADDRESS WHAT ISN’T WORKING.
Foster Youth Achieving Better Outcomes With Special Program
by Hevenn Vanhelsdingen | Treatment Foster Care Oregon (TFCO) is improving chances for children considered “at-risk” of criminal activity and incarceration.
How to Care: Lane County is launching a new program to aid victims of tragedy
by Ella Hutcherson | Now that TIP has been funded in Lane County, volunteers will be available locally 24/7, and Isaacson expects that they will begin responding to calls from the emergency system in March 2023.
Eastern Oregon voters voice opinions for change
by Hannah Seibold and Zachary Jones Neuray | Oregon’s gubernatorial race has thrust the state into the national spotlight. With three candidates, Republican Christine Drazan, Democrat Tina Kotek and Betsy Johnson, unaffiliated, it’s a tight race.
Faces Behind the Words: Youth and rural voters speak out
by Hannah Seibold and Zachary Jones Neuray | To capture the least heard voter voices — youth and rural voters from Central Oregon speak out.
Central Oregon voters voice opinions for change
by Hannah Seibold and Zachary Jones Neuray | To capture the least heard voter voices — youth and those living in rural areas — EO Media Group partnered with students from the University of Oregon’s Catalyst Journalism Project to provide a platform for their views in all regions of the state.
Water contamination worsened as DEQ went easy on Port of Morrow
by Alex Baumhardt, Cole Sinanian and Jael Calloway | SPECIAL REPORT: State officials rarely intervened and never stopped the port as it dumped hundreds of tons of excess nitrogen over a critical groundwater area.
Powerful port pollutes water for years with little state action: Drinking water of thousands increasingly impaired by excessive nitrogen dumps
by Alex Baumhardt, Cole Sinanian and Jael Calloway | Thousands of Oregonians near the town of Boardman in the northeast corner of the state live atop an aquifer so tainted with farming chemicals that it’s not safe to drink.
Oregon’s Climate Leader: 16-year-old climate activist Adah Crandall says she ‘had a lot of hope for the future.’ Then Gov. Kate Brown ‘let us down.’
by Nika Bartoo-Smith | At 16, Crandall has been called the Greta Thunberg of Oregon, a comparison she is not fond of.
After millions spent on hotel purchases, shelter owners in Oregon face steep renovation costs
by Jael Calloway | The hotels are part of Project Turnkey, which just got $50 million in a new round of funding by the Legislature.
Preventing Second Injury: The Trauma Intervention Program provides emotional support during sudden tragedies
by Ella Hutcherson | TIP is a nonprofit program that is deployed by first responders after a traumatic incident such as a sudden death
Rewards, tougher prosecutions employed to slow illegal slaughter of wildlife
by Cole Sinanian | Government officials, conservation groups work to combat Oregon’s poaching problem.
Oregon would drop remaining limits on self-service fueling, leaving drivers with choice
by Jael Calloway | Large segments of the state have provided self-service gas during the pandemic and officials say there have been no problems
Oregon legislators propose big boost in their pay – and they have community support
by Cole Sinanian and Les Zaitz | Groups say a living wage would take down barriers that keep people of color, low-income workers from pursuing legislative office
The Forgotten Answer to the Affordable Housing Crisis
by Cole Sinanian | New zoning laws offer a unique opportunity to fill Lane County neighborhoods with affordable co-ops.
Skipping the Basics: why isn’t it experimenting with universal basic income pilot programs like the rest of the U.S.?
by Shane Hoffmann | The stabilizing potential of UBI could work well in a city like Eugene, potentially helping meet the needs of the unhoused community. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 20.4 percent of Eugene’s population lived in poverty in 2019.
Failure to Care: Oregon has allowed many long-term care centers to escape accountability for the Covid deaths of elderly residents
Jack Forrest, Sally Segar and Jassy McKinley | More than 1,700 residents of Oregon’s long-term care centers have died from COVID-related illnesses, state records show.
A Hidden Death: Last year a Eugene man was arrested during a mental health crisis
Ardeshir Tabrizian | The man died two days after deputies knelt on his back at the Lane County Jail.
Swept Away: The CDC said to let the homeless stay at their camps during COVID
Joanna Mann, Jennah Pendleton, Addie Peterson and Silas Sloan | Eugene officials have forced unhoused people to move from their campsites more than 1,600 times since the COVID-19 pandemic began, flouting federal health guidelines.
The Long Division: Gervais turns to unconventional methods to keep students engaged
Shane Hoffmann | Visiting students door-to-door has made the difference in the small Marion County school district.
Designed for Everyone
Anna Sundholm and Danny Latoni | How COVID-19 conversations could change higher education for the better
A Solution to Ending Homelessness Might Be in the Data
Mia Ryder-Marks | Data-driven approaches are eliminating homelessness in communities across the U.S. Is Eugene next?
Oregon nonprofit provides Umatilla Indian Reservation with healthy, sustainable food options during pandemic
Shane Hoffmann | BIPOC households have been disproportionately affected, leading to a food insecurity rate that is two to three times higher than for white Oregonians.
Give Housing, Save Money
Jade Yamakazi Stewart | Lane County is providing hundreds of housing units and services to chronically homeless people while saving hospitals and governments money.
Tillamook County Usually Picks the Presidential Winner. Its Residents Are More Polarized Than Ever.
By Nigel Jaquiss, Abbey McDonald and Nick Rosenberger | Catalyst expanded its commitment to covering rural areas of Oregon, using the opportunity of the 2020 presidential election to examine issues facing Tillamook County, which shifted to the right politically in the 2016 election.
Oregon’s coal-free future: Where will power come from?
Nick Rosenberger | With the ongoing global climate crisis, the debate about how electricity can be produced by cleaner, renewable energy continues to heat up.
Community courts and the homeless: Do these programs make a difference?
Gina Scalpone, Zack Demars and Donny Morrison | For more than 20 years, the community court model has been touted across the U.S. as an alternative for people who end up in court over and over again, often for the same offenses.
‘Brady lists’ of untruthful Oregon police officers inconsistent county to county
Whitney Woodworth and Hannah Kanik | The first-of-its-kind survey revealed significant differences in how Brady lists—the index of problematic officers—are handled from county to county and with variable outcomes.
The Response to Homelessness in the Most Unaffordable U.S. Cities? Lock ‘Em Up
Ryan E. Little, Zack Demars, Nick McCool, Theresa Diffendal, Gina Scalpone, Aneurin Canham-Clyne and Riin Aljas | Catalyst was a founding member of “Nowhere to Go,” the student-run national investigation reporting project into the criminalization of homelessness. The project, overseen by the Howard Center for Investigative Reporting at the University of Maryland, produced several stories, including a lead story involving two…
Free From Fines — For Now
By Donny Morrison | June 18, 2020 The coronavirus and the ensuing shelter-in-place orders created an unexpected safe haven for Eugene’s unhoused community
Climate changed: Oregon bids goodbye to coal power
Nick Rosenberger | The production of energy and emissions from the Boardman Coal Plant—the last such plant in Oregon—will come to an end in just a few months and mark the end of an energy era.
Out of Focus: Oregon’s elderly are killing themselves at an alarming rate
By Kelsey Harnisch, Megan Yarck and Kiva Hanson Oregon’s elderly population has the highest rate of suicide in the state. According to data from the National Violent Death Reporting System, the suicide rate for Oregonians aged 65 and older is nearly twice as high as the rate for young people.
Oregon schools failing on suicide prevention: Survey shows high schools across the state use widely differing approaches to help students in need
by Ariana Sinclair, Sravya Tadepalli and Michael Tobin Catalyst surveyed the 10 largest districts in the state, as well as the biggest school district in every county not already represented by the survey. In all, Catalyst asked 40 districts for the teaching plans they used to discuss suicide prevention with high school students. The districts’ responses to the survey revealed…
The Broken System: Lane County ships the homeless and mentally ill to the state hospital without a trial
by Gina Scalpone and Emily Goodykoontz Increases in substance use and mental illness among the homeless are not unique to this area — other cities are facing the same challenge. However, our findings raise a serious question: Why has Eugene and Lane County been sending more and more defendants to the state hospital and doing so at such an alarming…
A City in Need of a Solution
by Taylor Perse EW searched around the country for cities that have pursued creative ideas to help people with a place to live and are now carrying out efforts with proven track records. As we learned, no program is perfect, and every community faces its own challenges. We zeroed in on three communities where leaders have been able to do…
OR Solutions for #MeToo
Kathryn Thier’s solutions journalism course investigated ways to combat sexual assault.
CCare affords students flexibility with contraception
by Ariana Sinclair CCare provides free contraceptive care to people at or below 250 percent of the federal poverty level, giving eligible UO students more flexibility in birth control options and the freedom to choose the care that works for them.
by Brandon Taylor and Asia Zeller Local schools suspend and expel special education students at twice the rate of their peers. One district is trying to change that.
An Unsuccessful Solution
by Taylor Perse and Morgan Theophil with contributions from Kenny Jacoby City officials claim Community Court has brought about big changes in the way Eugene treats the homeless. The court’s own numbers tell a very different story.
The Bond Project: Creating a safer drinking environment
by Casey Miller The Bond Project is a joint effort between the UOPD, DOS and Bond to create a safer drinking environment for students.
Oregon Promise: How Oregon makes college possible for low-income and first-generation students
by Ryan Nguyen The Promise is a state grant that can pay a portion — or even all — of a student’s tuition toward one of Oregon’s 17 community colleges.
Sharps Kits, Syringes and Solidarity
by Sierra Webster HIV Alliance and Trans*Ponder provide clean needles to people who inject hormones.
Zones of Silence: Local officials still won’t discuss poor oversight of enterprise zones
UO’s science literacy program cultivates scientific curiosity
Becky Hoag | The UO Science Literacy Program (SLP) strives to improve science literacy by providing instructors and graduate students with effective teaching methods.
Big Corporate Handouts with Little Oversight: Enterprise zones give nearly unsupervised tax breaks to Lane County businesses
by Michael Tobin
A new adjustment
by Austin Willhoft International Community Voices at UO focuses on building a closer relationship among non-U.S. individuals through weekly group therapy while fostering a community.
Family Business: How a community organization in Lane County helps Latino families grow their own food and businesses
by Brittany Norton How a community organization in Lane County helps Latino families grow their own food and businesses.
Homeless Youth on the RAN
by Morgan Theophil 15th Night, RAN (the Rapid Access Network) and the application of technology to help homeless youth in our community.
Legislators Consolidate Power, Cash, in Partially Invisible Cycle of Giving to Each Other
by Cooper Green An investigation into Oregon’s campaign finance laws and the financial transactions known as “pass-throughs.”
Nothing to See Here
Kenny Jacoby and Morgan Theophil | As a follow-up to the Criminalizing Homelessness story, this report considers the role of the mayor and City Council in helping to make police records available and in mitigating homelessness.
Courting the Ones Who Need It
by Kaylee Tornay and Brittany Norton with additional reporting by Sam Felton and Natalia Riccardi The Eugene Community Court seeks to support rather than sentence. Eugene city and court officials decided to implement this program to support frequent offenders with their underlying needs rather than punishing them repeatedly.
by Kenny Jacoby, Kaylee Tornay, Francisca Benitez, Victoria Ganahl and Thomas Rivers This data-driven story shows that the unhoused are disproportionately ticketed in Eugene.
A System of Neglect
by Kelly Kenoyer, Kenny Jacoby This story revealed abuses in senior care facilitates across Oregon and gaps in the state’s regulation, including small civil penalties for serious cases of abuse and neglect.
2016 Solutions Issue of OR Magazine
2016 OR Magazine team, led by editor Sami Edge The 2016 issue of OR Magazine uses a solutions journalism approach to report on issues and how Oregon is working to address those issues.
DEQ Has Oregon in Hot, Dirty Water
by Carl Segerstrom, Katherine Smith and Erin Carey The reporters discovered that the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality was years — and sometimes — decades behind in renewing water pollution permits granted to major companies and municipal sewer agencies. The result: The state allows companies and cities to operate under outdated environmental standards and pour wastes into Oregon rivers already so…
Putting Oregon’s Records Law to the Test
by Kira Hoffelmeyer and Russell Wilson This story examined the weaknesses of Oregon’s public records law using an innovative approach. The reporters asked for all the emails among members of the Attorney General’s Public Records Task Force, which by then had been meeting for six months without any progress. Their story revealed wide disparity in compliance and understanding of the records…
Tackling Teen Pregnancy
by Corinne Ellis During the past seven years Oregon has put in motion a plan to reduce teen pregnancy and improve the quality of sexual health education in public schools. This plan was introduced in 2009 as a concept of what sex education could look like. Just three years after the plan was created, the rate of unplanned teenage births…
Taxpayer-Subsidized Biogas Plant Underperforms, Asks for Massive Tax Break
by Wes Franco and Jonathan Bach The students’ examination of deadbeat taxpayers in Lane County revealed a company that had received millions in state tax subsidies but now was refusing to pay its property tax bill. The students used land records and state tax court documents to present the story.
Against the Grain
by Erin Hampton A gender gap between men and women spans many of the nation’s economic sectors. Women farmers make up a relatively small share of the U.S. agricultural workforce. However, when compared to the rest of the nation, Oregon sits well above the national average. More than 300 women around the state participate in Oregon State University’s Small Farms…
Coexisting with Carnivores
by Haley Rivet Wolves and ranchers have a long history of conflict. Ranchers need to protect their animals and wolves need to eat. The historical solution to the conflict was to kill the wolves. But wolves are a crucial part of the ecosystem. Their presence supports biodiversity by controlling the overgrazing of elk and other prey species. The disappearance of…
Engendering Equal Education
by Zach Silva In early 2016, both the state of Oregon and the Obama administration released an unprecedented set of rules enforcing equal access for transgender students in educational facilities. But before this topic saw nationwide legislation, similar policies had gained momentum in Eugene. A policy adopted in Eugene’s 4J school district has been creating safe spaces for transgender students…
Cannabis as a Treatment for Veterans with PTSD
by Haley Rivet As cannabis becomes easier to access and legal in more states, growing numbers of veterans are using marijuana as a treatment for the symptoms of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. Grow for Vets, a national nonprofit with chapters in Eugene and Portland, aims to reduce the number of veteran suicides and drug overdoses by promoting cannabis treatment over the…