ISSUE 213 | June 30, 2023

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From Around the Region and the State
Economic and Policy News

Local entrepreneurs facilitate relationships for community and economic well-being 


Giving Back to the Community is led by a group of women of color aiming to foster relationships between businesses and community members in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

These entrepreneurs recognized the harm inflicted upon small businesses during pandemic lockdowns, and hope to revitalize their customer engagement by raising awareness of their offerings while helping community members get the products and services they need.

Latino communities – and businesses – are typically underserved and this organization is uniquely positioned to elevate them.

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Coalition aims to enhance housing affordability 


A rental housing coalition has been established in Delaware County to improve the access of low- and moderate-income people to affordable housing.

Amid the national housing crisis, the county must also navigate stock of subpar housing and a dense population.

Other groups in the area focus on for-sale inventory and needs of unhoused community members.

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Students likely to seek postsecondary learning when they have financial aid approval


The state Senate has approved a bill requiring all high school seniors to complete financial aid applications, and it now waits House consideration.

Although families may opt out of the requirement, it could help determine eligibility to receive aid for postsecondary program enrollment.

With a 53-percent application completion rate, many students currently miss opportunities to prepare for sustainable careers.

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Please take note of our new Luzerne County office location:

169 North Pennsylvania Ave.

Wilkes-Barre, PA 18701

From Around the Nation and the Globe
Economic and Policy News

Collaboration interrupts infant death rates in Baltimore

Community groups in Baltimore are successfully using instruction, outreach, and education to reverse an alarming infant mortality trend.

Since the launch of B’More for Healthy Babies, the rate has dropped from 13.5 infant deaths for every 1,000 live births to 8.8 infant deaths for every 1,000 live births, though racial disparities remain.

Program areas of focus include safe sleep, breastfeeding basics, nutrition, and parenting.


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Evidence supports emergency administration of buprenorphine  

The study from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and Cooper Medical School determined that the use of buprenorphine medication to treat opioid overdose patients improved withdrawal symptoms in 10 minutes and led drug users to pursue treatment in 30 days.

Challenges such as regulatory barriers and limited addiction treatment resources keep emergency access to the medication from widespread implementation across the country.

The CDC has reported that over 100,000 Americans died from drug overdose between May 2021 and May 2022 – the most ever recorded.


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Transit agencies continue to face workforce difficulties   

According to a survey conducted by the American Public Transportation Association, 90 percent of transit agencies nationwide struggle to recruit and hire new drivers.

Resulting impacts include Rhode Island Public Transit Authority’s reduction of 21 bus route services, Miami-Dade Transit’s delay of the “Better Bus Network,” and the completion of only 1 in 5 scheduled itineraries by Baltimore buses in 2022.

Rising dangers associated with the occupation, insufficient wages, lack of advancement opportunities, overtime demands, and rigid scheduling exacerbate this issue.

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