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Good morning, Portland! I hope you enjoyed that sunshine yesterday, because we’re back to clouds and rain today. Let’s dig into the headlines.
In local news:
• Portland Public Schools officials are alleging that unionized district teachers are coordinating efforts to shutdown in-person classes at their schools by calling out sick. In an email obtained by the Oregonian, district human resources officer Sharon Reese wrote that the district is getting “regular reports of educators being asked by colleagues to call-in sick with the intention of causing the district to close schools.” The PPS teachers union is currently at an impasse with the district over teacher planning time and support during the pandemic.
• Portland Trail Blazer Damian Lillard is expected to have surgery to fix an abdomen injury. The surgery recovery timeline means he could be out for the rest of season.
• The Portland Pickles mascot posted an unsolicited dick pic on main yesterday and you can’t convince me otherwise:
• Unvaccinated Nike employees who haven’t received a medical or religious exemption will get the axe this Saturday, the company announced Wednesday. It’s unclear how many of Nike’s 14,000 employees will be fired due to the policy. Columbia Sportswear, Oregon’s other major apparel company, also announced it will start firing unvaccinated employees who do not have a valid exemption on February 1.
• Oregon and Washington legislators are trying yet again to put an end to the madness that is changing our clocks from standard time to daylight time twice a year (yay!). However, this time they’re trying to convince the Washigton Legislature to preserve Pacific Standard Time—the time of pitifully dark afternoons we are in right now—all year long (Booooooo!!!!!). The switch would mean less light in the summer evenings and earlier sunrises.
In national news:
• Some grocery store shelves across the country are bare again, á la March 2020. According to food industry analysts, the limited supplies are due to recent winter storms that have challenged transportation routes, labor shortages, and our “just-in-time” supply chain that is currently lagging.
• National health officials are pointing to distrust, misinformation, and bad weather delays as cause for the “alarmingly low” COVID-19 vaccination rates among kids ages 5 to 11. Shots for the age group were approved two months ago, but only 17 percent of the US age group were fully vaccinated as of Tuesday. (Oregon’s rates are higher than the national average, boasting 25 percent of kids ages 5 to 11 fully vaccinated.)
JUST IN: The Biden administration is buying another 500 million at-home COVID-19 tests for Americans, in addition to the 500 million already being procured. A website will launch next week so Americans can order the free tests, Biden announced. https://t.co/TLy1aR9flN
— NPR (@NPR) January 13, 2022
• Amtrak has paid over $2 million to more than 1,500 passengers with disabilities that experienced discrimination on the rail service, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) said Wednesday. The settlement is in response to the DOJ’s findings that Amtrak failed to make certain train stations accessible in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
• A lawsuit from the Rust movie’s armorer Wednesday accused an ammunition supplier of including live ammunition in a box that was only supposed to include dummy rounds. New Mexico police are still investigating the shooting on the movie’s set that killed cinematographer Halyna Hutchins. Actor and Rust director Alec Baldwin was holding the gun at the time it went off, but claims the gun fired on its own due to a malfunction.
In fun news (because god knows we need it):
• It’s back for 2022! America’s sexiest, funnest dirty movie fest, HUMP! Coming at ya starting February 24 at Revolution Hall—GET YOUR TICKETS NOW!
• Free him, he did nothing wrong: