Nancy Derringer

Nancy Nall Derringer has been a writer and editor in Metro Detroit since 2005.

Articles

How Grand Rapids is prepping for the next big storm

September 1, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Michigan, like most states, will have to spend billions on aging water infrastructure. But cities like Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor and even tiny Manistee are already dipping their toes into innovative projects to keep surging stormwater at bay.

Amid opioid crisis, few doctors use Michigan’s outdated drug monitoring tool

August 18, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Michigan’s online system is supposed to detect physicians and patients who abuse prescription painkillers. But the current version is so slow most doctors don’t even bother. And a bill to update the system hardly seems a cure-all.

Northern Michigan counties vulnerable to HIV, hepatitis C outbreaks

August 18, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Federal public health officials say 11 poor and rural Michigan counties share characteristics that make them ripe for illness, much of it stemming from drug abuse.

Amid guns and violence and police shootings, a program that works

July 21, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Operation Ceasefire, designed to get police and young people talking and taking responsibility, has shown results in cities across the nation. Kalamazoo is betting it can work there, too

Bullets over Cleveland?

July 19, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

One Michigan entrepreneur, a purveyor of online sex toys, is selling bargain-priced bulletproof vests to folks attending the Republican National Convention this week.

Businesses gain from stable child care, but what are they doing about it?

July 14, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Quality child care for low-income workers benefits families, but also the businesses that parents work for. Yet only a small fraction of businesses subsidize child care and the Michigan Chamber says it is not pushing to increase state funding.

State child-care program still reeling from claims of lax oversight

July 14, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

A federally funded program to help the poorest workers pay for child care used to serve 60,000 Michigan families, three times what it serves now. A 2008 audit exposed financial lapses, caregivers with criminal pasts, and possible fraud. The numbers have yet to recover.

Michigan’s low investment in child care costs state and poor children alike

June 30, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Michigan has one of the most restrictive policies in the nation on giving low-income families access to subsidized child care. Yet research shows investing in high-quality care can put more parents back to work and improves the odds for vulnerable children

Bridge book on Flint crisis offers lessons on government failure

June 22, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

“Poison on Tap,” the first book released on Flint’s lead-poisoning disaster, shows how a series of government missteps left children in this impoverished city with a lifetime of heartache. A portion of book sales will go to help those children.

Human trafficking fight plagued by bad data, as well as bad guys

June 9, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Sex and labor trafficking are problems. But the state is left to create laws with no reliable data on the scope of problem in Michigan, or even a common understanding of what constitutes trafficking. Too often, Hollywood fills the vacuum.

In Battle Creek, a starving Cereal City

May 12, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

The “breakfast capital of the world” is having its lunch eaten by a fraying municipal infrastructure.

Not waiting for government, philanthropy steps up to help Flint

May 11, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

In an echo of Detroit’s “grand bargain,” 10 Michigan foundations, led by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, are combining to inject up to $125 million into Flint’s recovery.

Are tampons as essential as toilet paper? Menstruation goes mainstream

May 10, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

The Michigan Legislature has yet to hold hearings on a measure that would require that tampons be provided free in public schools and state buildings. Other bills would exempt menstrual products from the state sales tax

Felony charges filed against state, city employees in Flint water crisis

April 20, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

The state attorney general promises more will be held responsible for the city’s lead-tainted water, while singling out two DEQ employees, as well as Flint’s water-quality supervisor.

24 Michigan hospitals were penalized for patient safety gaps. Is there a better measure?

April 19, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

A national ranking system financially punishes hospitals for high rates of hospital-acquired conditions, such as infections. But large, big-city hospitals say their poor scores can be misleading because they deal with patients more susceptible to complications.

Citizens Research Council marks 100 years of putting government under its microscope

April 12, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

It’s one of the most influential groups you’ve never heard of. Born a century ago, its independent research still drives much of state policymaking.

Candidates are gone, but economic woes remain for Trump, Sanders supporters

April 5, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

What happens when opposites attract? Many supporters of outsider candidates Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders find themselves agreeing on issues, but from very different directions.

How Lansing can reduce crowding at state’s lone women’s prison

March 29, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

An epidemic of drug addiction has swollen the state’s sole women’s prison to near-capacity, leading to overcrowding complaints. Is there a better way?

Sticking with your own kind: tribalism in politics

March 3, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

We all tend to vote for one party over another. But we also are more likely to live, love and troll among fellow travelers.

After decades of failure, will metro Detroit pass mass transit this year?

February 23, 2016 | Nancy Derringer

Southeast Michigan has tried, and failed, to craft a functional public-transit system that works – many times. Leaders hope the RTA’s master plan, to be revealed this spring, will turn the tide

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