News

Q&A: Prison reform advocate Terrance Winn on gun violence in Shreveport, Louisiana

Winn sat down with the Gulf States Newsroom's Kat Stromquist to discuss what causes Shreveport to struggle with shootings, and what could help.

Should heat waves get names like hurricanes? Some believe it could help save lives

As heat waves and heat domes become more intense, the idea of naming extreme heat as we do with other major disasters is gaining traction with some experts.

Gun violence and incarceration issues go ‘hand in hand’ in this Louisiana city, residents say

Some residents say Shreveport’s history of mass incarceration has changed their community — and their families.

Price increases? Job losses? How will UAB’s acquisition of St. Vincent’s impact local health care?

The president of Alabama’s hospital association says the acquisition will help maintain access to care, but some economists predict the move will lead to job cuts and higher health care costs.

In the fight against gun violence, this Gulf South city is searching for ways to save lives

As violent crime slows down across the South, Shreveport, Louisiana, is reckoning with the aftermath of an unusually deadly 2023.

UAB to acquire Ascension St. Vincent’s for $450 million

Under the agreement, UAB will assume control of all Ascension St. Vincent's hospitals and providers in Alabama.

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Q&A: Ruth Leitman on filming The Pink House, the frontline in the fight for abortion rights

Leitman filmed the Jackson, Mississippi, clinic at the center of the SCOTUS decision on abortion rights for seven years for her documentary, "No One Asked You."

‘This ain’t the same sun’: Extreme heat is changing summertime for kids in the South

Driven by climate change, extreme temperatures are forcing parents and camp counselors to change their summer routines to keep kids safe.

In Northeast Mississippi, Black cowboys celebrated Juneteenth with a horse show

More than 100 people attended the inaugural show, hosted by A Step Above Horse Riding Club in the farming community of Pontotoc, to celebrate the holiday.

As dollar stores continue rural expansion, a Louisiana parish found a new way to push back

Tangipahoa Parish blocked a new Dollar General from opening in a case that could set a precedent for other communities looking to keep discount retailers out.

A family’s search for their native and formerly enslaved heritage in South Alabama

The Tate Family has spent nearly two decades uncovering records that establish their ancestors' time in Alabama before its statehood.

Jon Batiste reflects on the South’s musical history: ‘I’m rooted in something bigger than me’

Before a recent concert in Birmingham, the Grammy-winning jazz pianist took time to learn more about the city’s history and influence on American music.

Gulf South sees record ACA Marketplace enrollment, driven by enhanced subsidies

A new report finds that the South leads the U.S. in increased ACA Marketplace enrollment — especially in states that have not expanded Medicaid.

How a Mississippi canoe company is raising a new generation of river caretakers

The Mississippi River is an endangered river. For 25 years, a Clarksdale canoe company has worked to teach kids to respect and protect the waterway.

Alabama officials hope renovated forensic mental health hospital will reduce backlog in county jails

The expansion will provide more space to care for a growing number of people considered incompetent to stand trial because of a mental health issue.

4 takeaways from a year of investigating nightmare utility bills

GSN reporters reflect on a year of the Utility Bill of the Month series investigating missing, expensive and just wrong water and power bills in the region.

After their son died in a Louisiana jail, a family struggles for answers

The case surrounding Jerome Stevenson's death highlights the barriers to information that families face when someone is hurt or dies while in custody.

Alabama actress finds home at center stage

Alabama actress Lily Kate Gwin, 22, was adopted at birth. She found home through her adoptive parents and her chosen home, the theater.

Birmingham’s poet laureate writes her homecoming

Birmingham’s inaugural poet laureate, Salaam Green, finds her home in the sensory details, the most important being poetry. But finding that home was a process.

EPA formally denies Alabama’s plan for coal ash waste

The federal agency says the state’s plan was not as protective as federal standards, allowing toxic waste to remain in unlined pits that may contaminate groundwater. Alabama officials say they will appeal.

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Here’s what you said were the hidden gems in Walker County

There are things we notice about where we live that others might miss. That might be a hidden gem or other surprise. We set out to discover a few of them in Walker County at our recent News and Brews community pop-up.

After years of increases, Jefferson County sees a decline in overdose fatalities

Following years of record-breaking increases, Jefferson County is finally seeing a decline in overdose fatalities. We talk to local officials to better understand the reasons for the drop, and if it’s a sign of a longer-term trend.

Alabama district attorney says ‘justice demands’ new trial for death row inmate

Jefferson County District Attorney Danny Carr filed a brief expressing his support for Toforest Johnson’s bid to receive a new trial. Carr has supported a new trial since 2020, but the latest filing detailed the findings of a post-conviction review of the case.

After decisive loss at Alabama Mercedes plants, powerful auto union vows to return and win

Newly elected UAW President Shawn Fain said the union will return to Mercedes and will press on with efforts to organize about 150,000 workers at more than a dozen auto factories across the nation.

Gulf South states among U.S. leaders for juvenile life without parole sentences, study shows

A youth sentencing study shows Alabama and Mississippi are among just four states that top the nation in new juvenile life without parole sentences since 2012.

Workers at Alabama’s Mercedes plants vote against joining a union

The workers voted 56% against the union, according to tallies released by the National Labor Relations Board, which ran the election.

Taylor Hunnicutt is championing her home state with debut album ‘Alabama Sound’

Alabama offers a diverse symphony of swampy rock, swaggering blues, murky country, and bone-rattling soul. It’s a sound singer-songwriter Taylor Hunnicutt recently reimagined on her debut album, Alabama Sound, which is out now.

UAB building among Alabama’s first to feature ‘bird safe’ glass

Advocates hope the new glass will prevent window collisions, a leading causes of bird mortality.

Researchers look into community health impact of wood pellet production in rural Mississippi

Brown University and Tougaloo College students are testing for potential air and noise pollution near the Drax wood pellet plant in Gloster, Mississippi.

Alabama coal company sued for a home explosion is delinquent on dozens of penalties

Crimson Oak Grove Resources has been cited for 204 safety violations since the March 8 blast, many involving “significant and substantial” safety violations.

The United Auto Workers faces a key test in the South with upcoming vote at Alabama Mercedes plant

The United Auto Workers is aiming for a key victory at Mercedes-Benz in Alabama. More than 5,000 workers at the facility in Vance and nearby battery plant will vote this week on whether to join the UAW.

Gambling, ethics bills fall short as legislative session ends

Alabama lawmakers closed the books on this year’s regular legislative session Thursday. While Republican leaders passed many of their priority bills, perhaps the most talked about issue – gambling – died.