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Intersections of injustice | Morning Newsletter

And, who gets to decide whether a school closes or classes quarantine?

Good morning, good people. You’re reading The Inquirer Morning Newsletter, catching you up on all the news that’s fit to email. Today we look at the Philly blocks gun violence has ravaged the most, explore who determines whether a school closes due to COVID cases, and dive into the new Amazon jobs coming to Philly.

— Tommy Rowan (@tommyrowan,

In Philadelphia, the epidemic of gun violence has been intensely concentrated in just a handful of neighborhoods and several dozen blocks, according to an Inquirer analysis.

There are more than 50 blocks in Philadelphia where 10 or more people have been shot since 2015, and these shootings have left behind a breathtaking level of fear and trauma among a fraction of the city’s residents, nearly all of whom are Black and brown.

As gun violence has reached heights this year, it has continued to disproportionately batter these same communities. So five Inquirer journalists crunched the numbers, sought out perspectives from residents of these blocks, and asked officials how, or if, perpetual violence has informed strategies to reduce the bloodshed.

Read the full report here.

Barely three weeks into this academic year four Philadelphia schools are back to virtual learning as coronavirus cases have led to temporary closures.

Which leads to a few important questions: What determines whether a school closes, or classes quarantine, and who gets to decide?

Well ... it depends.

Reporters Maddie Hanna, Sarah Gantz, and Melanie Burney walk readers through the decision-making process.

Reopening resources

  1. Here’s our latest list of restaurants, large performance venues, universities, and gyms in the Philly region where you need to show proof of vaccination.

  2. Here’s where to get a COVID-19 test in the Philadelphia region.

  3. Should you laminate your vaccination card? What if you lose it? Here are the dos and don’ts.

  4. Here’s what you need to know about medical exemptions.

  5. It could be time to upgrade your face gear. Which masks work best?

What you need to know today

  1. A man was fatally beaten outside Pat’s King of Steaks in South Philadelphia, according to police. This is second murder outside of Pat’s in only a few months.

  2. Here’s what you need to know about the new Amazon jobs coming to Philly.

  3. A Massachusetts man was convicted for sending racist and threatening emails to Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw.

  4. The Pennsylvania National Guard and Amazon, says Philly School Superintendent William Hite, could help solve the school bus driver shortage that has plagued the district since the year started.

  5. On Wednesday, the GOP-led Pennsylvania legislature took its most concrete step to investigate the 2020 election, since the top Senate Republican committed last month to undertaking a review that former President Donald Trump has long demanded as part of his campaign to discredit the results.

  6. Unvaccinated individuals cost the U.S. health-care system $5.7 billion in avoidable hospital expenses over the last three months — a tab that will continue to rise.

  7. City Council President Darrell Clarke will introduce legislation outlining what his signature Neighborhood Preservation Initiative will fund, including $118 million for new affordable housing.

  8. The parents of 20-year-old Rodney Hargrove, who was fatally shot soon after he was released from a city jail in March, have sued the city and corrections officials. They’re saying his death was a direct result of the facility’s negligent policy of releasing inmates in the middle of the night with no means of transportation.

Through your eyes | #OurPhilly

Heaven on earth.

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

😜Frank Stallone, Sly’s brother, quietly loved being the butt of so many of Norm Macdonald’s jokes on Saturday Night Live. Macdonald died earlier this week at the age of 61.

🏈Nearly 700 days later, Widener football returns home to uplifting fans and a sense of normalcy.

🍕Gregorio Fierro, a pizza consultant, has had a hand in some of the region’s best-regarded pizza formulas.

🍻In time for the weekend: Check out the best weekend happy hours in Philly.

⚾As the Phillies’ playoff odds fade, here’s where they stand in a crowded NL wild-card field.


“By refusing vaccination, and then fighting to skip out on COVID-19 testing, these state employees are not only risking their own health. They’re imposing the consequences of their decisions on a vulnerable population,” writes columnist Solomon Jones, pushing for Pennsylvania corrections officers to either get vaccinated or find new jobs.

  1. The new contract for Philadelphia’s police union, announced Tuesday, only counts as “police reform” if toothless reckonings are your jam, writes columnist Helen Ubiñas.

  2. Linda McFarlane, executive director of Just Detention International, writes that mail is a lifeline for incarcerated people. So she asks: Why is Pennsylvania blocking it?

What we're reading

  1. Before COVID, the Uptown Theater in North Philadelphia had a real shot at a revival, writes PhillyMag. But a combination of the pandemic and the death of the theater’s No. 1 champion has threatened that revival. Will the iconic venue have a second act?

  2. A 26-year-old Spanish Twitch streamer is scoring interviews with soccer’s biggest stars. He counts Lionel Messi as an admirer, and Gerard Piqué as a business partner. The New York Times wondered why everyone is talking to Ibai Llanos, and considered whether his work might offer a glimpse into the future of sports media.

Photo of the Day

Spectacular, but brief: more strong storms are possible this week.