Texas Standard For February 15, 2021

As the temperatures fall, along with precipitation, millions of Texans stranded or worse by winter weather. Coming up, conversations with reporters from across Texas on how Texans are weathering conditions that have brought large parts of the state to a standstill. And: Missing out on the vaccine but getting something else instead: scammed. A report from Houston. Also: A major disconnect with rural Texas: concerns that a lack of broadband is leaving some Texas towns far behind. Plus: New efforts to reunite families separated by U.S. immigration policies. Those stories and more today on the Texas Standard:

By Texas StandardFebruary 15, 2021 9:30 am

Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Monday, February 15, 2021.

 Reporter Round Robin on Weather 

Public radio reporters Bret Jaspers of KERA, Joey Palacios of TPR and Kaysie Ellingson at Texas Texas Tech Public Media talk to the Standard about extreme winter weather across the state.

Vaccine Equity Immigrants

Some Houston communities hit hardest by COVID are not getting the vaccine, including the city’s half a million undocumented immigrants. In some cases, people are getting scammed instead. Houston Public Media’s Elizabeth Trovall has more.

Rural Texas Broadband Expansion

Nothing else has exposed the digital divide quite like the pandemic. A lack of good internet access has posed profound obstacles for many Texans trying to work and school from home. Even Gov. Greg Abbott has acknowledged that without better internet, some Texas towns will be left behind. Texas Tech Public Media’s Sarah Self-Walbrick traveled to Jones County, just north of Abilene where only a third of homes have access to broadband.

San Angelo Water Situation

We are going into the second waterless week for some residents of San Angelo. The city told residents not to use municipal water a week ago today. Some water users complained of a funny smell. Tests revealed that the system had been infiltrated by a number of industrial chemicals, some of them carcinogenic. Most of the city has had its service fully restored, but not all of it. Many of the folks who still can’t use their taps are represented by Lucy Gonzales, who sits on the San Angelo City Council who talks to the Standard.

Bug Bites

Nonprofit Grocery Store

For years, Dallas advocates have tried to get a major grocery store to move into the South Oak Cliff neighborhood but haven’t had any luck. Now, they want to build their own by replicating a non-profit grocery store in Waco. From KERA North Texas, contributor Sujata Dand reports why this potential solution to food scarcity isn’t so easy to pull off.

American Families United Act

President Biden has promised an immigration overhaul that would create a pathway to citizenship for millions of unauthorized immigrants already here. But immigration advocates also want legislation to make it easier for separated immigrant families to legally reunite in the United States. Since 1997, more than 600,000 spouses  have been separated by deportations or rejected immigration applications. Texas Public Radio’s Maria Mendez has more.

All this and Texas News Roundup, plus Social Media Editor Wells Dunbar with the talk of Texas.

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