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What you need to know about the two latest COVID variants | Morning Newsletter

And, resolving $1.1 billion in tangled titles.

    The Morning Newsletter

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Hello, intrepid readers of The Inquirer Morning Newsletter.

First: Here’s what you need to know about ”delta-plus” and lambda coronavirus variants.

Then: Coworkers of a librarian, who passed away from cancer a few months ago, say Temple’s sick-leave policy “ran her into the ground.”

And: More than 10,400 properties in Philadelphia have unclear ownership, and the city’s Register of Wills office is working to untangle these titles.

— Olayemi Falodun (

Scientists say that limited data on “delta-plus” and lambda variants don’t yet warrant panic among vaccinated people.

Despite only more than 200 previously reported cases of the delta-plus variant from around the world, including the United States, the mutation has prompted concern among health officials, including at the World Health Organization.

However, scientists continue to stress that a multipronged approach of getting vaccinated and wearing a mask or social distancing is the best way to curb the spread and fight against COVID-19 and its variants, as researchers continue to learn what makes the new variant tick.

Reporter Aparna Nathan has more on the mutations and what experts are saying about their impact on the population and vaccines.

  1. The current delta-fueled COVID-19 surge is sending more children to hospitals locally and across the nation, a sign, doctors said, that adults need to do a better job of protecting kids, especially those under 12 who cannot get vaccinated.

Latanya Jenkins worked at Temple’s Charles Library since 2013, but her coworkers said during her battle with cancer, she struggled with the fear of choosing her health over work, due to the penalties connected to using the last few days of her sick leave, including possibly losing her job and health insurance. She passed away in April.

Temple declined to comment on her case, but said it supported her department’s handling of it.

Reporter Juliana Feliciano Reyes spoke with Temple’s staff about the university’s sick leave policy after the death of a beloved coworker.

Reopening resources

  1. Here’s how Philly experts are thinking about COVID-19 risk, while the delta variant’s outdoor transmission is still unclear.

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

  3. Do you need to upgrade your mask?

  4. Before you go out to eat, here’s a list of Philly restaurants requiring vaccination proof to dine in.

  5. Should you laminate your vaccination card?

What you need to know today

  1. A troubled Philly detective was arrested in April on simple assault and related offenses, then a controversial judge cleared him, which a legal expert called “insane.”

  2. More than 19,000 Philadelphia School District students are not up-to-date on their required vaccines, and district officials are urging parents to get their kids inoculated by the time in-person learning starts at the end of the month.

  3. Meet one of the leading GOP Senate candidates, Jeff Bartos of Lower Merion, who brings both conservative business economics and cultural progressivism rhetoric, as he hopes to wrangle a mixed bag of voters.

  4. A guard has been charged with aggravated assault for an attack by his security dog on a Black patron at a popular South Jersey restaurant and nightclub, officials announced Wednesday.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

Can’t make up any of it, the sky just naturally glows in the city like this. 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

🍲 Get to the bottom of what makes foundation. on North Broad Street sleek and unique.

🎻 After an 18-month closure, The Philadelphia Orchestra will bring the historic main stage of Carnegie Hall back to life this fall.

🏀 If Furkan Korkmaz plays up to his freshly signed three-year, $15 million contract, the Sixers might have just secured an elite sharpshooter at a steal of a deal.


“Worse still, the vacuum of leadership they have created is being filled with misinformation and hysterics. And once again, children are being forced to shoulder the burdens that our local leaders cannot or will not bear,” writes Katie Calabrese, a Montgomery County mother of two, who implores adults to get involved with ensuring safe in-person learning this fall.

  1. Too many pundits are getting “woke” all wrong, and columnist The Angry Grammarian explains why.

  2. The Ben Franklin Parkway deserves an intelligent redesign that emphasizes and properly incorporates accessibility, mobility, and creative public art that fits Philly, writes Ignacio F. Bunster-Ossa, architect and vice president for Landscape Urbanism and Resilience at The Collaborative.

What we're reading

  1. If you’re looking for some good yarn, crochet fashion designer Emani Outterbridge is setting up shop at Cherry Street Pier, WHYY noted.

  2. Philly Voice dug into rap phenom Tierra Whack’s new song “Walk The Beat.”

  3. Forbes looked into how pop icon Rihanna became a billionaire beyond just singing and performing.

  4. Here’s a list of zesty zucchini dishes to try this summer, as suggested by CNN.

Your daily dose of | National Oyster Day

Oysters are the salt-water delicacies that’ll have surf lovers clamoring for more. Here are the best spots in Philly to satisfy that shellfish desire on National Oyster Day (today).