Ted Roelofs

Ted Roelofs of Kentwood, has been a general assignment reporter at Bridge since 2012 and has written extensively on health care in that time as well as prison and juvenile justice reform. Roelofs spent nearly three decades at the Grand Rapids Press where he covered politics, wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, rural poverty and mental illness among the homeless. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin. Reach Ted at ted.roelofs@gmail.com

Articles

Separating bunks and no hugs for kids: coronavirus and Michigan’s homeless

Separating bunks and no hugs for kids: coronavirus and Michigan’s homeless

March 20, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

It’s hard to practice “social distancing” with dozens of people in one room. How homeless shelters are trying to protect residents who are already among the most vulnerable to serious illness.

Michigan health care workers say they need more coronavirus protection

Michigan health care workers say they need more coronavirus protection

March 18, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Some hospitals are rationing gear to protect against COVID-19. A respiratory therapist said she has treated flu-like symptoms without an N95 mask. And Michigan’s governor is pleading for more protection gear.

Michigan seniors face coronavirus, and the fear of being left alone

Michigan seniors face coronavirus, and the fear of being left alone

March 15, 2020 | Robin Erb, Ted Roelofs

For many of Michigan’s elderly, shuttered senior centers, bans on visits at nursing homes and canceled worship services threaten to cut off contact with friends and children.

Can I get tested for coronavirus in Michigan and other questions answered

Can I get tested for coronavirus in Michigan and other questions answered

March 13, 2020 | Robin Erb, Ted Roelofs, Mike Wilkinson, Kelly House

Bridge has reached out to the experts to answer your most pressing questions on how to protect your family and what steps you can take to keep your loved ones safe from the new coronavirus.

Michigan is ‘flying blind’ on coronavirus without more testing, experts say

Michigan is ‘flying blind’ on coronavirus without more testing, experts say

March 12, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Health experts say testing needs to ramp up to better track and slow down the spread of the virus. The state says it currently has capacity to test for 1,300 cases of the disease.

States are taking drastic measures to contain coronavirus. Is Michigan next?

States are taking drastic measures to contain coronavirus. Is Michigan next?

March 11, 2020 | Mike Wilkinson, Ted Roelofs

Michigan should consider containment, bans on gatherings to “flatten the curve” and slow the spread of the coronavirus, experts say. ‘If I overdo it, so be it,’ one expert says.

Fever, but must work. Will coronavirus change paid sick leave in Michigan?

Fever, but must work. Will coronavirus change paid sick leave in Michigan?

March 11, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Restaurant and direct care workers with no paid sick leave could increase coronavirus risk for Michigan, which currently exempts businesses with fewer than 50 workers from being compelled to offer paid leave.

Michigan reports first two coronavirus cases, in Wayne and Oakland counties

Michigan reports first two coronavirus cases, in Wayne and Oakland counties

March 10, 2020 | Jonathan Oosting, Ted Roelofs

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer confirmed the cases late Tuesday involving two residents who recently traveled, one internationally.

As Michigan battle rages on Line 5, Enbridge quietly buys land for tunnel

As Michigan battle rages on Line 5, Enbridge quietly buys land for tunnel

March 4, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Enbridge Energy is spending millions for residential properties near Mackinaw City, apparently confident of winning lawsuits contesting a planned tunnel. Local residents say they welcome the revenue for schools and roads. 

Michigan agrees to pay $80 million in juvenile prison suit, enact reforms

Michigan agrees to pay $80 million in juvenile prison suit, enact reforms

February 27, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Attorney General Dana Nessel agrees to pay $80 million and make prison changes to settle lawsuits alleging sexual assault of juvenile prisoners in adult prisons.

 

Michigan Senate moves to deregulate health care

Michigan Senate moves to deregulate health care

February 20, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Bills approved Thursday would make it easier to add new psychiatric beds and build hospitals. The measure dropped language impacting rural hospitals and some outpatient heart procedures.

Sheriff’s plea on mentally ill prisoner reveals gap in Michigan treatment

Sheriff’s plea on mentally ill prisoner reveals gap in Michigan treatment

February 12, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

An Upper Peninsula sheriff went to Facebook to get state help for a delusional man in his jail. His post highlights severe shortages in the state for violent or severely mentally ill people caught up in the criminal justice system.

For new Michigan moms with postpartum depression, where to turn for help

For new Michigan moms with postpartum depression, where to turn for help

February 7, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Postpartum depression afflicts about one in seven moms. Diagnosis and treatment lag, especially among low-income, African-American and Latino mothers. Here’s a primer on where to turn.

How Trump clean water rule impacts Michigan’s wetlands and streams

How Trump clean water rule impacts Michigan’s wetlands and streams

February 3, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Michigan farmers and business groups endorse the clarity they say the Trump rule brings to commercial practices. Environmentalists warn that wetlands would vanish and pollutants increase in the state’s lakes and streams.

How much brook trout is enough? Michigan keeps changing catch limits.

How much brook trout is enough? Michigan keeps changing catch limits.

January 21, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

State regulators have changed daily catch limits for Michigan’s state fish four times since 2017 as they try to balance conservation concerns against the frustration of many Upper Peninsula anglers.

Dana Nessel appeals unemployment fraud case to Michigan Supreme Court

Dana Nessel appeals unemployment fraud case to Michigan Supreme Court

January 16, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

The state asks the court to reject the right of thousands of workers to collect monetary damages.

Michigan county threatens to bulldoze Amish homes in poop dispute

Michigan county threatens to bulldoze Amish homes in poop dispute

January 15, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

An Amish community, with help from the ACLU, argues that Lenawee County is violating its religious freedom by demanding it stop using outhouses and spreading human waste in fields. Local residents are backing the Amish. 

Michigan Republican pushes to deregulate health care. Some hospitals call foul.

Michigan Republican pushes to deregulate health care. Some hospitals call foul.

January 8, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

A GOP legislative package would remove barriers to small rural hospitals expanding or offering some of the same services as larger hospitals in the region. Both sides say their vision would lower costs. 

Michigan settles juvenile inmate sex assault claims as trial nears

Michigan settles juvenile inmate sex assault claims as trial nears

January 4, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

For seven years, Republican and Democratic attorneys general fought the allegations in state and federal court before reaching an apparent deal. The terms were not immediately announced. 

 A Detroit foster child considered suicide. Then Western Michigan called.

A Detroit foster child considered suicide. Then Western Michigan called.

January 3, 2020 | Ted Roelofs

Hundreds of foster children have found support and triumph through a scholarship program tailored to foster kids at WMU. For one young woman, the program may have saved her life. 

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