Chicago

Business • Consumer & Service
Amazon drivers are hanging smartphones in trees to get more work
Amazon drivers are hanging smartphones in trees to get more work
Credit: Wicked Monday

Smartphones dangling from trees became a usual sight near Amazon.com delivery stations and Whole Foods stores in the Chicago suburb thanks to an Uber-like app called Amazon Flex, that lets drivers make deliveries in their own cars.

Someone places several devices in a tree located close to the station where deliveries originate. Drivers then sync their own phones with the ones in the tree and wait nearby for an order pickup. 

For many with other jobs, it’s a way to earn extra money in their spare time. But with joblessness rising and unemployment payments shrinking, competition for such work has stiffened, and more people rely on it as their primary income source.

Politics • American • US
Chicago Public Schools will reopen online only in September
Lincoln Park High School, Chicago, IL, USA
Lincoln Park High School, Chicago, IL, USA Credit: Kseferovic

Public schools in Chicago will start the coming academic year remote-only, meaning all classes will be held online for all students from September to at least November 9. The situation will be reevaluated then whether a hybrid learning model can be implemented. The decision came just a day after the Chicago Teachers Union prepared for a strike over school safety and the demand for remote learning.

"As a district, we value parent feedback and we cannot overlook that a large percentage of parents have indicated they do not feel comfortable sending their students to school under a hybrid model for the start of the school year," so Janice K. Jackson, CEO of the Chicago Public Schools.

Politics • American • US
Chicago temporarily take down Christopher Columbus statues
Chicago temporarily take down Christopher Columbus statues
Credit: Unknown author / Wikimedia commons (Public Domain)

After a week of protests in Chicago, Chicago's two Christopher Columbus statues were taken down on Friday morning. The statues, located in the Little Italy neighbourhood and in Grant Park, have been "temporarily removed until further notice, according to the office of Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot.

Politics • American • US
Fifteen US mayors sign letter opposing use of federal law enforcement with "no oversight" against protesters
Black Lives Matter protest in Portland, Oregon. People protesting police brutality and the deaths of several members of the Black community - sparked by the recent death of George Floyd.
Black Lives Matter protest in Portland, Oregon. People protesting police brutality and the deaths of several members of the Black community - sparked by the recent death of George Floyd. Credit: unsplash.com/Tito Texidor III

Fifteen US mayors have addressed a letter to Attorney General William Barr and Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Chad Wolf opposing the use of federal federal law enforcement with "no oversight" against protesters. The letter is calling the act of deploying federal forces against protesters an "abuse of power" and is demanding the withdrawal of "extraordinary federal law enforcement and military presence" from Portland and other American cities.

"These are tactics we expect from authoritarian regimes -- not our democracy [...] The murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis sparked a national uprising and reckoning. The majority of the protests have been peaceful and aimed at improving our communities. Where this is not the case, it still does not justify the use of federal forces. Unilaterally deploying these paramilitary-type forces into our cities is wholly inconsistent with our system of democracy and our most basic values," the letter, posted by Mayor Muriel Bowser, said.

The list of mayors who signed the letter is as follows: Jenny A. Durkan, Seattle; Ted Wheeler, Portland; Keisha Lance Bottoms, Atlanta; Lori Lightfoot, Chicago; Muriel Bowser, Washington DC; Quinton D. Lucas, Kansas City; Martin J. Walsh, Boston; Jim Kenny, Philadelphia; Michael Hancock, Denver; Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles; Sam Liccardo, San Jose; Libby Schaaf, Oakland; Regina Romera, Tucson; Darrell Steinberg, Sacramento; Kate Gallego, Phoenix.

Portland officials had previously stated that federal officers were working in coordination with local law enforcement but have since come out saying that "coordination was not made with Portland police" as the "federal police have their marching order."

According to Chad Wolf, federal law enforcement had only been deployed to Portland. On Monday, Trump vowed to send federal officers to other cities.

Sports
Chicago Marathon has been cancelled
Chicago Marathon races down Columbus Drive
Chicago Marathon races down Columbus Drive Credit: unsplash.com/Michael Carruth

The Chicago Marathon, scheduled for October 11, has been cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It's the second time the marathon won't take place, with the last cancellation happening when Beatrice Foods withdrew its support in 1987.

"Our highest priority has always been the safety of our participants and our volunteers. We understand the disappointment, but when we return to the streets of Chicago, it will be a celebratory moment and an uncompromising statement about the collective spirit of who we are as a running community: We are powerful, we are persistent, and we will reach the finish line again," so Carey Pinkowski, race director of the marathon.

Business • Jobs & Careers
Study finds 37% of U.S. jobs can be performed entirely at home
Study finds 37% of U.S. jobs can be performed entirely at home
Credit: unsplash.com/ConvertKit

A study by the University of Chicago evaluating the "economic impact of 'social distancing' measures" found that "37% of jobs in the United States can be performed entirely at home". It further found that remote jobs pay more while "lower-income economies have a lower share".

Health
CDC warns of aggressive rats amid Covid-19 restaurant closures
CDC warns of aggressive rats amid Covid-19 restaurant closures
Credit: unsplash.com/Mert Guller

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued a warning on rats after reports of rat cannibalism and "an increase in rodent activity" in residential areas. As the Covid-19 pandemic forced restaurants to shut down, the absence of restaurant food waste forces rodents to look for food sources elsewhere. There have been sightings of hordes of rats in Chicago, New Orleans and New York which are not only travelling farther for food but also during daytime. According to rat expert Bobby Corrigan, "rats are not becoming aggressive toward people, but toward each other."

Business • Economy
Nike to donate 140,000 pieces of footwear and equipment globally to health care workers
An Oregon Heath & Science University (OHSU) nurse wears a version of the Air Zoom Pulse in a colorway created by OHSU Doernbecher patient Sawyer Miller.
An Oregon Heath & Science University (OHSU) nurse wears a version of the Air Zoom Pulse in a colorway created by OHSU Doernbecher patient Sawyer Miller. Credit: NIKE

Nike, in partnership with Good360 and Nike athletes, will donate 140,000 "pieces of footwear, apparel and equipment globally" to health care workers combating Covid-19.

30,000 pairs of Nike Air Zoom Pulse, a sneaker designed for 'healthcare athletes', will go to hospitals and health care staff in Chicago, Los Angeles, Memphis and New York City.

Lifestyle • Pets
Chicago Animal Care and Control announces that all animals have been adopted for first time in history

For the first time in history, the Chicago Animal Care and Control has announced that all animals have been adopted, following the spread of the coronavirus and the announcement of the stay at home order. Other shelters in Chicago have reported a similar increase in adoption rates, with some shelters adding waiting lists for people who want to adopt an animal. Julia Poukatch, a spokeswoman for PAWS Chicago said that "it’s times like these that we see the best in our community. From the beginning of this COVID-19 crisis, the outpouring of care and concern for our animals has been extraordinary".