In this Jan. 13, 2021 file photo, Sen. Mike Woodard, D-Durham, speaks with Sen. Ben Clark, D-Hoke, right, and Sen. Jeff Jackson, D-Mecklenburg in the Senate chamber during the opening session of the North Carolina General Assembly in Raleigh, N.C.
Gerry Broome / AP

NC State Sen. Jeff Jackson Enters 2022 U.S. Senate Race

A North Carolina state senator announced Tuesday that he's running for the U.S. Senate in 2022, hoping to flip fortunes for Democrats from his state to serve in the chamber after a string of defeats.

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Airman First Class Emily Riddles, assigned to 156th aeromedical evacuation squadron, North Carolina Air National Guard, prepares a COVID-19 vaccine shot at Central Prison, Raleigh, North Carolina, Jan. 21, 2021.
Sgt. Jamar Marcel Pugh / North Carolina Army National Guard photo

Coronavirus Live Updates: Week of Jan. 25

Senate Confirms Antony Blinken As Secretary Of State

With bipartisan support, the Senate confirmed Antony Blinken as the new secretary of state on Tuesday. The final vote was 78-22. Blinken, 58, was earlier approved overwhelmingly by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. As the top U.S. diplomat, Blinken will face a number of national security challenges, including how to deal with China, Russia and Iran. Blinken has vowed to restore American leadership to the global stage. One of the first acts of the Biden administration was to start the...

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Donald Trump was a divisive president, however his popularity persisted in North Carolina. Enthusiasm over the unconventional leader helped Republicans drum up a win in 2020.

Now with Trump gone from office, conservatives are navigating how to proceed. A collection of Republican voices weighs in. 

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The NHL has postponed its first game since the league’s season began, calling off Tuesday night’s game between Carolina and the Predators hours after the Hurricanes won the first of a two-game set in Nashville.

Eleanor holds the new book she received from Dr. David Tayloe during her one year check up. Tayloe's New Bern clinic gives books to kids at each of their well visits from six months to five years of age, as part of the Reach Out And Read program.
Lisa Philip / WUNC

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has announced it's expanding a successful early literacy program to all North Carolina counties.

At a drive-through vaccination site in Elizabeth City, N.C., Tech Sgt. Steven Simpson of the North Carolina National Guard administers a COVID-19 vaccination as Maj. Hollis Guenther gives the next recipient instructions about the vaccine.
Jay Price / WUNC

North Carolina is among more than a dozen states that have called up the National Guard to help at vaccination sites, and Joe Biden may mobilize Guard units nationally.

Gov. Roy Cooper watches while Tracy Toner gives a COVID-19 vaccination to Duke nurse Arianna Motsinger at the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham on Monday, December 21, 2020.
Shawn Rocco / Duke Health

This post will be updated periodically with the latest information on how the coronavirus is affecting North Carolina. Scroll down for older updates. For a recap of last week's news, check out Coronavirus Live Updates: Week of Jan. 11.

6:40 p.m. - The number of North Carolina counties experiencing critical community spread of COVID-19 has risen. According to an alert from state health officials, 86 of the state's 100 counties are listed as red under North Carolina's three-tier coding system. That's the most serious designation -- with a positivity rate of greater than 10% and hospital systems experiencing high impact from COVID cases. Eighty-four counties were listed as red when the state issued its last alert on January 6. Thirteen counties are listed as orange, with substantial community spread, and only one county is listed as yellow, experiencing significant spread of the viral infection. - Rusty Jacobs, WUNC

WUNC Youth Reporter Erin Batten-Hicks has continued to work at her on-campus job during the pandemic.
Erin Batten-Hicks / for WUNC

Many college students are experiencing the longest winter break of their school careers. That’s because most universities extended their breaks to avoid having students on-campus during a winter spike in COVID-19 cases.

But some students, like me, are still going to campus.

WUNC Youth Reporter Caitlin Leggett
Kate Medley / For WUNC

A day in the life of any college student is nothing short of hectic. However, my first semester as a junior at NC Wesleyan College was on a whole different level — each day different from the next, and no routine ever actually staying solid because of, well, the coronavirus.

So, if I had to describe a regular day for me this semester it would be in three words: a hot mess.

Many African Americans have a healthy skepticism of a racist health care system. Now Black health professionals have an uphill battle to promote the COVID vaccine.

Host Leoneda Inge talks about trust in both the medicine and messaging with Meharry Medical College President James Hildreth, Duke Medical Center nurse Faye Williams and clinical trial participants Curtis and Benita Perkins.  

Congress held an unprecedented impeachment vote this week, following the president’s role in the January 6th act of domestic terrorism on the U.S. Capitol.

Rob Schofield of the progressive N.C. Policy Watch and Becki Gray of the conservative John Locke Foundation discuss Trump’s second impeachment, and whether unity is really in the political forecast. Later, they review North Carolina's vaccination rollout.



Updated on Jan. 22. This post will be updated periodically as we tackle your questions.

North Carolina had a rocky start to its initial rollout of vaccinations against COVID-19. Last week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ranked the state as sixth worst in the country for initial vaccine distribution per capita. Since then, state officials made significant moves in hopes of speeding the process. On Jan. 5, Governor Roy Cooper announced that he mobilized the NC National Guard to support vaccine distribution. On Thursday, health officials released a significant revamp of the state vaccine rollout plan. Essentially, they’ve done away with the previous sub-tiered four-phase system and introduced a new five-group plan.


Laura Pellicer / WUNC

WUNC Commits To Anti-Racism

Black lives matter. WUNC believes this because it is true, and truth fuels what we do at North Carolina Public Radio. WUNC does not believe that saying Black lives matter is a political statement, or supportive of any single organization, or that it conflicts with our journalistic mission. In fact, saying and believing that Black lives matter enhances that journalistic mission, by acknowledging the various levels of systemic racism with which our social, political and corporate establishments...

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The 2020 Coronavirus Crisis

Everything you need to know about the outbreak and response – across the globe and in North Carolina.

Embodied Radio Show

Shruti Shah

Growing Up Transracially Adopted: Stories of Race, Culture And Identity

Every family looks different. But if your parents are a different race than you are, your family can expect to get looks … and personal questions too. That’s because transracial adoption was rare, even controversial, until relatively recently. The number of transracial adoptions has increased in the past 50 years — particularly white parents adopting children of color.

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Tested Podcast

Tested is a hard look at how North Carolina and its neighbors face the day's challenges. Hosted by journalists Dave DeWitt and Leoneda Inge.

Sex and relationships are intimate – and sometimes intimidating to talk about. Host Anita Rao guides us on an exploration of our brains and our bodies that touches down in taboo territory.


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Education Stories

The Old Well on the UNC- Chapel Hill campus.
Brian Batista / For WUNC

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill on Friday announced that it avoided returning to campus 112 undergraduate students who tested positive for the coronavirus through its newly launched mass testing program.

Gerry Broome AP Photo

The UNC System Racial Equity Task Force has submitted its final report recommending changes across North Carolina's public universities. 

Annmarie Brown sits at a desk and computer to attend school virtually.
Courtesy of Emily Brown

When the Durham Public Schools' board of education voted to remain in virtual learning for the rest of the school year, Rhiannon Giles' reaction was complicated.

"I think they made the right decision, but also I cried," Giles said.

She's the mother of two students at Club Boulevard Elementary, with a daughter in fifth grade and a son in kindergarten.

Eleanor holds the new book she received from Dr. David Tayloe during her one year check up. Tayloe's New Bern clinic gives books to kids at each of their well visits from six months to five years of age, as part of the Reach Out And Read program.
Lisa Philip / WUNC

The North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services has announced it's expanding a successful early literacy program to all North Carolina counties.

More Education News

Reporting on the lives of American military personnel and veterans.