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History

VOICES: Remembering Billie Lee Rogers, who fought environmental racism in rural North Carolina

July 23, 2021 - In 1982, a rural, Black North Carolina community suffered damages from a timber company's careless aerial application of toxic pesticides. The fight that ensued with state authorities led to local resident Billie Lee Rogers becoming a lifelong advocate for pesticide safety and environmental justice. Rogers passed away in June, and we share pesticide safety advocate Allen Spalt's remarks about her life and work delivered at her memorial service.

VOICES: On UNC's troubled racial past and present

July 7, 2021 - Geeta N. Kapur, a North Carolina civil rights attorney and UNC-Chapel Hill alumna who has a book coming out in August about the school's fraught racial history, says it should come as no surprise that journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones — a Black woman bold enough to speak truth to power — was initially denied tenure by the school and then granted it only begrudgingly. Tenure would have given her a degree of academic freedom to reveal other truths that some don't want to hear.

A history of groundbreaking reporting on the South's poultry industry

June 1, 2021 - It was 32 years ago that Southern Exposure — the print forerunner to Facing South — set out to document conditions in the region's fast-growing poultry industry. Many of the problems it reported on continue today. And as our recent reporting has shown, the pandemic created new challenges for the industry's changing workforce while also presenting opportunities for organizing in an industry that's long resisted unionization.