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JBS pork plant in Worthington part of OSHA investigation over COVID deaths

Plus: how Save Our Stages came together; photos of empty Twin Cities music venues; new Hennepin County program aims to help youth on probation; and more.

JBS pork processing plant in Worthington.
JBS pork processing plant in Worthington.

Looking at the meat packing outbreaks. WCCO’s Liz Collin reports: “The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is expected to brief lawmakers on Monday in an investigation into COVID-19 outbreaks at meat packing plants across the country. … The House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis wants to know what happened that lead to the deaths of more than 250 employees and more than 50,000 infections. … It includes at least two deaths traced to the JBS plant in Worthington.

How Save Our Stages came together. At Bloomberg CityLab, Rebecca Greenwald reports: “On the 50th anniversary of legendary Minneapolis music venue First Avenue, owner Dayna Frank was at home working on her loan application for the federal Paycheck Protection Program instead of hosting the celebration concert she had planned. … With the doors to her club shut indefinitely because of the coronavirus pandemic, she had already reduced her staff from 480 employees to a skeleton crew of 24, including furloughing herself. But the real jolt to her business’s survival came when she realized by the start of April that the Small Business Administration program was in no way designed for the challenges independent music venues were facing.

Speaking of music venues… For The Current’s Emmet Kowler has photos of some prominent empty stages in the Twin Cities:It’s not that venues aren’t supposed to be empty. Most of the time, they are. There’s a whole lot that happens before doors open. The day of the big show, the bar staff, janitors, roadies, handlers, bouncers, and performers see it. But we, the audience, aren’t meant to. … Almost a year after crowds last filled these beautiful, quirky, often grimy rooms, they still feel wholly distinct from one another. From the cathedral-like architectural lighting of the State, to the quiet bustle of Icehouse’s dining room, to the daylight streaming into the 7th St Entry…while strange and sad, it also – thankfully – feels only temporary.”

Innovative program in Hennepin County. The Star Tribune’s David Chanen reports: “Mateo watched his mom and dad’s abusive relationship and then began sliding into the same pattern. Newly on probation, he saw little hope. … “I thought this was my life,” the 21-year-old said. … Now Mateo is part of Hennepin County’s new probation program aimed at young adults, swarming them with support and guidance as they transition back into the community. The program is the first in the nation targeting 18- to 21-year-olds on probation, an age group that historically struggles with anger and impulse control.”

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In other news…

Checking in with Warsame:In his ‘dream job,’ Abdi Warsame works to rebuild trust at the Minneapolis public housing agency” [Star Tribune]

Not good:‘Disorders of disconnect’: How the pandemic affects students with eating disorders” [Minnesota Daily]

In case you were considering Manitoba in February:‘Cancel your vacation plans’: Canada tightening border rules amid COVID-19 pandemic” [Star Tribune]

RIP:Herbert ‘Herbie’ Bernick, legendary men’s clothier in St. Paul, dies at 90” [Pioneer Press]

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