WFAE

Synora Robinson describes her life a year ago as comfortable and pleasant. She was coming up on 17 years at her job, was saving money and didn’t worry about being able to pay for her home.

“I was just able to have girls' night out or just have fun and not worry,” Robinson said. “There was no stress of what tomorrow may hold because I knew that I had things under control.”

Mecklenburg County officials said they expect to move more than 200 people to shelters or hotel rooms by the time homeless camps near uptown Charlotte are shut down Friday, as city and county officials squabbled Thursday over the details of how to clear the land.

County officials had estimated that 150 people have been living in tents on private and public property just east of Interstate 277. But since Wednesday, more than 180 people have accepted offers of temporary shelter, County Manager Dena Diorio said in a news conference.

The House of Representatives impeached President Trump on Wednesday for the second time in 13 months. It was the first time a president has been impeached twice.

More than 24,000 health care workers have been vaccinated for COVID-19 in North Carolina, but state officials on Tuesday urged people to practice safety over the holidays as the number of infections mounts.

“If you think about the upcoming Christmas and New Year’s holidays, please avoid traveling and gathering,” North Carolina Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy Cohen said Tuesday at a press conference in Raleigh. “If you absolutely must, get tested ahead of time, wear a mask all the time, keep it small and keep it outdoors.”

A new survey finds a growing number of North Carolina nurses are willing to take the coronavirus vaccine, but many still have lingering reservations.

The survey of 430 nurses was conducted by the North Carolina Nurses Association from Dec. 10 - 14. It found 57% of nurses said they would be comfortable taking a COVID-19 vaccine.

A bipartisan group of housing experts and policymakers says extending state or federal eviction moratoriums won't be enough to avert a national crisis in the new year. On Tuesday, the group called for state and federal financial aid.

Researchers estimate at least 7 million households nationwide are at risk of eviction after Jan. 1. That's when a federal moratorium on evictions ends and extended unemployment benefits expire.

In North Carolina, as many as 300,000 evictions are possible, said Rick Glazier, executive director of the North Carolina Justice Center.

On a recent morning Milagros Macher toured Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic School with her 9-year-old son, Alberto.

This time last year, thousands of families were visiting huge "choice fairs" and spilling into schools across the Charlotte region for tours and open houses.

The Charlotte-Mecklenburg School Board voted unanimously Tuesday to rename Vance High School in honor of Charlotte civil rights lawyer Julius Chambers.

In 1997, the CMS board agreed to name the high school in the new Governors Village campus for Zebulon Vance, a Confederate officer and slaveholder who led the state in the 1860s and '70s.

When a COVID-19 outbreak hits a community, one of the first responses is to perform contact tracing to pinpoint the outbreak's origin and inform people at risk to quarantine. But defenses against the virus can only go so far without consistent support from the public. 

Host Dave DeWitt talks with WFAE reporter David Boraks about the effectiveness of contact tracing around Charlotte, NC.

Dave also speaks with Meera Viswanathan, a fellow with RTI International and director of the RTI-UNC Evidence-Based Practice Center, about a recent analysis of coronavirus health screenings.


This week, the childhood home of legendary singer and North Carolina native Nina Simone was granted a preservation easement. The house sits about 90 miles west of Charlotte in Tryon, and is where she taught herself to play the piano at the age of 3 before going on to be a classically-trained pianist. Preservation North Carolina partnered with the owners of the property and a coalition that included the National Trust for Historic Preservation in securing the easement.

Brent Leggs, executive director of the national trust’s African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund, explains what the easement designation means for Simone’s home.

Duke Energy is urging state regulators to approve rate increases at its two North Carolina electric utilities, including money to pay for cleanups of toxic coal ash.   

Delegates at the scaled-back Republican National Convention later this month in Charlotte, N.C., must wear masks, and the GOP plans to track everyone's movements with badges equipped with Bluetooth technology.

The special badges will allow officials to find out whom they came in contact with if someone later gets sick from the coronavirus, said Jeffrey Runge, the convention's health consultant.

That will make contact tracing easier, he said.

Gaston County commissioners voted 6-1 Monday night to move a Confederate monument that has stood in front of the courthouse since 1912.

A group called "Retire the Red Raider" is lobbying the Gaston County school board to change the mascot for Belmont's South Point High School.

Twelve volunteers will walk past a towering Confederate monument into the Gaston County Courthouse Tuesday to discuss whether that statue should be removed. The outcome will provide one measure of just how much perspectives are shifting on matters of race, power and history. 

Last week, conservative Madison Cawthorn, who is 24, won a runoff election in the GOP primary for North Carolina’s 11th Congressional District, which is centered around Asheville.

Protestor holds a sign that reads 'end the tyranny.'
Kate Medley / For WUNC

Governors find themselves in the political crosshairs of the pandemic — navigating the threat of an economic depression with a second wave outbreak. This week, states began diverging from the federal government’s recommended strict restrictions. 

From Mountains To Beaches, A Statewide Update On COVID-19

Apr 15, 2020

In a statewide special, public radio stations from across North Carolina join together to examine the impact of Coronavirus on our health, schools and economy.

Courtesy of Sarah Delia / WFAE

During the summer of 2015, a Charlotte woman was sexually assaulted by a stranger. She believes she knows who her attacker is, but for the past three years she has struggled to find justice. A year ago, she took her story to WFAE, the NPR affiliate in Charlotte, and they decided to turn her journey into a podcast.

Charlotte Expands Non-Discrimination Ordinance For LGBT Individuals

Feb 25, 2016
Image of bathroom sign
The LEAF Project / Flickr Creative Commons

The Charlotte City Council passed an ordinance to include non-discrimination protections for the LGBT community.

Although the expanded protection includes a variety of changes, the most controversial measure allows transgender people to use the bathroom of their choice.

The city council voted 7-4 in favor of the ordinance expansion, but Governor Pat McCrory and other Republican legislators have indicated the state may intervene.

Kerrick Resigns In Settlement With Charlotte

Oct 9, 2015
A picture of a gavel on a table.
Joe Gratz / Flickr Creative Commons

Former Charlotte police officer Randall Kerrick has reached a settlement with the city.

Kerrick was charged with voluntary manslaughter for his killing of an unarmed African American male, but the trial ended in a hung jury. Kerrick has resigned, and the city will pay him more than $100,000. 

Host Frank Stasio talks with WFAE reporter Gwendolyn Glenn about the trial and the settlement.