When the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) first announced its Meeting the Moment action plan last year, workforce and service delivery issues were at the forefront. Officials pointed to the “Great Resignation” as creating an unusually competitive job market, leading to high attrition rates among bus and rail operators. Mass resignations during the pandemic, along with […]
With the world’s sixth-largest freshwater lake at our fingertips, Chicago’s cup runneth over with bragging rights. Climate migration is predicted for the Second City, with hordes of people from out west tapping into our water privilege: our Great, and fragile, Lake. But currently, in Middle America, there’s a city running out of water. No, it’s […]
Editor’s note: On November 21, the union representing Berlin workers announced that the bar’s owners told the union on November 20 of their intent to permanently close, effective November 19. “The boycott is happening as long as it takes. It will continue until we get a contract that is what we’re looking for, and that […]
This story is part of the Chicago Missing Persons project by City Bureau and Invisible Institute, two nonprofit journalism organizations based in Chicago. Read the full investigation and see resources for families of the missing here. Shantieya Smith was a protector in her North Lawndale home, where three generations lived under one roof—the cousin you’d […]
More than a year after the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization overturned Roe v. Wade, the landmark 1973 case that legalized abortions nationwide, local abortion funds and abortion care providers are still reeling as many navigate a dip in donations and a new state of reproductive health care in […]
Correction: A previous version of this story misstated Inspector General Deborah Witzburg’s position on police misconduct arbitration, based on information in publicly available documents. After publication, Witzburg clarified she believes that if cases are no longer adjudicated by the police board, the city should take steps to make arbitration more transparent. The Reader regrets the errors. A […]
Nearly 100 queer people of Middle Eastern heritage are gathering each week for an online peer support group in response to Israel’s attacks on Palestinians. Led by Finlay Sarafa McHale, a queer and transgender Iraqi Chaldean clinical social worker, the online group of queer SWANA (Southwest Asian and North African) people aims to provide a […]
Editor’s note: U.S. Senator Dick Durbin on November 2 called for a ceasefire in Gaza, becoming the first person in his chamber to do so. “Two Jews, three opinions” is an old saying used by Jewish people to express the beautiful (and often maddening) diversity of perspective found inside their communities. The saying could have […]
When the Pretrial Fairness Act took effect in September, Illinois became the first state to completely eliminate cash bail. Advocates who championed the reform have regarded the victory with caution since the law first passed in 2021, wary that judges might simply replace pretrial detention with house arrest for those who would have walked free—without […]
The week I moved into my first one-bedroom apartment in Rogers Park, I was excited to have a space of my own. Unfortunately, the mice that infested the building were just as excited about my arrival. Three days into my move, I unlocked my front door to find a mouse jumping at my trash can, […]
What does a 20-foot-tall inflatable rat have to do with the long history of public expression in the labor rights movement? The answer: a lot more than you’d expect.
My hair is neatly combed these days, no longer the “rat’s nest” my mom affectionately called it when I was a child. But, as I enter Harold Washington Library on a recent autumn day, I still feel an affinity for the creature multiple mayors have identified as Chicago’s top public enemy. I’m here to look […]
Between 2008 and 2022, judges found the testimony of 40 law enforcement officers in Cook County to be incredible or unbelievable, but few officers faced significant repercussions.
I first reached out to the CTA over email this July, asking them if they tracked opioid overdose-related deaths. I didn’t get an answer to that question until August. The answer was no. But by then, I had already started trying to figure out the numbers on my own.
Here is how I came to 158 deaths: It’s likely that 158 is an approximate, potentially conservative estimate. But it’s a place to start.