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Violence is falling in Chester | Morning Newsletter

And, Philly-area schools vary on mask guidance.

    The Morning Newsletter

    Start your day with the Philly news you need and the stories you want all in one easy-to-read newsletter

Hello, diligent readers of The Inquirer Morning Newsletter.

First: Homicides in Chester have declined, and people point to several possible factors.

Then: Retracing the repatriation of lost Native American children who suffered at a boarding school in Pennsylvania more than 140 years ago.

And: It was a stormy night in region, with multiple reports of tornadoes and several buildings damaged in Bucks County.

— Olayemi Falodun (

Prior to 2021, Chester, like many places across the nation, suffered from heightened gun violence. But in the last year, the Delaware County city has experienced a dramatic drop in homicides and fatal shootings.

Homicides in Chester plunged 63% this year compared with 2020, with fatal shootings dropping down 43%, according to police statistics.

So, what’s been the catalyst behind this shift?

District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer and his staff don’t single out any one thing, but they and community activists believe personalized and community-focused antiviolence initiatives are making a difference.

Reporter Vinny Vella unlocks one of the key strategies the 35,000-member community of Chester is using to change how residents and outsiders view the lone city in the county.

It’s taken 142 years to return the remains of Native American children at the Carlisle Barracks cemetery to their indigenous roots, long after they were led away and forced to assimilate in boarding schools.

The Carlisle Indian Industrial School was the first government-backed off-reservation boarding school, housing more than 8,000 students from 1879 to 1918. But its mission destroyed the future of many children, while leaving a South Dakota community feeling incomplete.

Charles Fox captures the long-deserved homecoming.

Reopening resources

  1. Do I need a COVID-19 vaccine booster to protect myself from delta and other variants?

  2. Track the latest data on COVID-19 cases in the region.

  3. Don’t ask for someone’s vaccination status. Do this.

  4. Here’s your guide on when you need to mask up in and round Philly.

  5. You should probably replace your fabric face masks.

  6. How to wear face masks in hot weather.

What you need to know today

  1. The Sixers took guard Jaden Springer in the 2021 NBA draft. Still, they’re in no hurry to get rid of soured star Ben Simmons.

  2. The National Weather Service said a “confirmed, dangerous tornado” ripped through several buildings in Bensalem Township last night and there were tornado warnings and severe thunderstorms throughout the region. Our photographers captured some of the damage left behind.

  3. The CDC strongly suggests that everyone in K-12 schools wear masks this coming fall, but school districts in the Philadelphia region have their own plans.

  4. Pennsylvania utilities have shut off service to 116,000 customers for unpaid bills since the lifting a moratorium by the state on April 1.

  5. Comcast’s profits soared in the second quarter, as live gate revenue from theme parks and theatergoing jump-started a rebound following losses amid the lockdown.

  6. A lawsuit claims a drunk cop and a FOP bar are responsible for the horrific injuries a Northeast Philly couple suffered.

  7. Philadelphia City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart released an audit revealing the city’s lack of oversight of Medicaid funds, highlighting overpayments and money spent on yoga, but local health agencies are pushing back.

  8. A lawsuit claims Vanguard blocked a client from selling 3,000 shares of a newly listed special purpose company, costing the customer about $9,000 in losses.

  9. Questions arise following the deaths of two incarcerated people in Philly jails in the span of a week.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

Feast your eyes on the basic building blocks of life in the city. Thanks for sharing.

Tag your Instagram posts with #OurPhilly, and we’ll pick our favorite each day to feature here and give you a shout-out.

That's interesting

🌆 Enjoy Philly in a different way this weekend, by exploring these possibilities.

🤤 Check out the best whoopie pies in the Philly area, and let your taste buds dig into a classic.

🎒 Here are some useful tips to help your kids cope mentally, as they head back to in-person learning.

🐶 You and your pup can whet your appetites with some drinks here during the dog days of summer.


“Years from now, we will look at her brave stand as a defining moment of a pivotal time for human civilization, a quest to find new forms of happiness outside of a system so oppressive that it has given most of us ‘the twisties,’” columnist Will Bunch writes about how Simone Biles’ abrupt withdrawal at the Tokyo Games changes how we look at mental health and what defines work.

  1. The United States must not look to local municipalities and states to bring about restorative justice for Black Americans; reparations should be established a federal level, Duke University Professor William Darity Jr. and folklorist Kirsten Mullen write for The Inquirer.

What we're reading

  1. A North Philly high school helps prep kindergarten and first-grade students to succeed via a summer learning program, 6abc reports.

  2. Want to make a difference in someone’s life? Patch shares details about a tutoring gig at the Free Library of Philadelphia.

  3. What is Philly doing about children aging out of foster care? Generocity looks into what is being dubbed the “foster care to homelessness pipeline.”

  4. Black creators on TikTok wonder if their strike against the social media platform hurts their cause, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

  5. The Players’ Tribune publishes a conversation with notable hooper Al Harrington and Sixers legend Allen Iverson, who is getting his own cannabis strain.

Your daily dose of | Glitter app

Want to get paid for picking up the litter in Philadelphia? Well, there’s an app for that. Terrill Haigler, also known as YaFavTrashman, has a free and public app called Glitter that lets residents report trash in their neighborhood. It also pays cleaners who register for that service.