Quality of Life

Michigan is a great place to live. Bridge will report that fact often — and on potential threats to the assets that make it so.


Michigan falls short in frontline treatment for opioid crisis

March 13, 2018 | Ted Roelofs

The state, hard hit by opioid deaths, has a shortage of doctors trained to prescribe medication that’s critical to recovery.

Lansing provides sluggish response to Michigan’s rising drug prices

February 27, 2018 | Ted Roelofs

Expected bills aimed at skyrocketing drug costs face an uncertain fate in the Michigan Legislature

How other states are fighting prescription drug costs

February 27, 2018 | Ted Roelofs

From pressuring drug manufacturers to offer bigger discounts to seeking bulk sales from Canada, other states are taking aggressive steps to help consumers.

Did a Michigan campus narrowly avert a massacre like the Florida shooting?

February 15, 2018 | Ron French, Jim Malewitz

We’ve all seen the horrible scenes from a Florida high school. But similar carnage may have visited Lansing Community College in November. But then a worried friend called police.

Aging area near Traverse City joins “village movement” to stay at home

February 15, 2018 | Ted Roelofs

Graying populations in regions across Michigan can benefit from grassroots membership networks that help with rides, nursing visits, and other challenges for older residents who want to remain independent.

An election divided them. A year later, they meet face to face.

November 7, 2017 | Ron French, Pat Shellenbarger

We’ve followed Michigan residents with diverse political views since the 2016 presidential election. They came together in one room on a recent morning. Here’s what happened.

Trump and anti-Trump Michiganders meet: A photo story

November 7, 2017 | Ron French

Coffee, donuts, laughs and a few tears: a year after a divisive presidential election, voters meet to swap political views amid hopes they can work together on some issues.

Chemical Valley and the threat to Michigan’s drinking water

October 31, 2017 | Chad Selweski

The Enbridge pipeline in the Straits of Mackinac gets all the attention. But a sprawling industrial complex in Ontario has a long history of chemical spills and botched communications with its coastal neighbors in Michigan.

Toxic chemical spill? Wait for our fax.

October 31, 2017 | Chad Selweski

News of an industrial spill from Canada’s Chemical Valley can take a long, bizarre path before Michigan towns learn of poisoned waters.

New findings suggest serious threat to Great Lakes fish from, yes, Prozac

September 12, 2017 | Ron Meador

Antidepressants and other drugs are finding their way into fish and affecting their behavior.

Trump’s DACA reversal a nightmare to this west Michigan ‘dreamer’

September 5, 2017 | Ron French

Wilfredo Diaz came to America when he was 9. At 22, he may have to return to Guatemala because of a decision made by President Trump.

Mastodon teeth and iron lungs? Just another day at this Grand Rapids school (slideshow)

September 5, 2017 | Ted Roelofs

The Grand Rapids Public Museum School’s innovative approach to interactive learning was recognized with a $10 million innovation grant from Steve Jobs’ widow.

Upper Peninsula population plummets. One family’s struggle shows why.

August 31, 2017 | Ron French

Northern Michigan counties are losing residents at a startling rate. Jobs are scarce. And so is hope among some.

See how population is changing in your Michigan county (interactive map)

August 31, 2017 | Mike Wilkinson

After lost decade, state sees slow growth. Check out how your county is faring with this interactive map.

A crusading attorney helped free a man framed for murder. They both ended up dead.

August 15, 2017 | Ron French

Leaving prison was supposed to make everything better. It was only the beginning of the troubles for an unlikely pair.

Fireworks, parades, and a partisan divide that won’t go away

July 11, 2017 | Ron French

The 2016 election exposed a gulf among Michigan residents. Bridge revisited 11 people and families we first profiled at Donald Trump’s inauguration to see if the past six months had changed their outlook. Both sides, it appears, are digging in.