BY SABRINA GARONE, VICTORIA MESCALL AND BRENDAN CAPUANO
New Refugee Policy (1)
On Oct. 24, the Trump Administration’s temporary ban on refugees entering the United States expired after four months. President Trump signed a new executive order allowing refugees to enter, but under extensive screening measures.
“The security of the American people is this administration’s highest priority, and these improved vetting measures are essential for American security,” Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke told the Associated Press.
“These new, standardized screening measures provide an opportunity for the United States to welcome those in need into our country, while ensuring a safer, more secure homeland.”
The new order also includes a 90-day review of 11 countries that the administration classifies as “high risk.” During this time, refugees from these countries will be allowed to enter on a case by case basis.
In early Oct., Trump also changed the maximum number of refugee admissions to 45,000, a significant reduction from the 110,000 limit set by President Obama in 2016.
Opioid Crisis (2)
On Oct. 26, President Trump declared opioid use in the country as a national public health emergency.
The Center for Disease Control describes opioids as “a class of drugs used to reduce pain.”
According to AP, the public health emergency will allow for the government to “redirect resources,” but no additional funding will go toward the effort to combat opioid usage.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) said, “An emergency of this magnitude must be met with sustained, robust funding and comprehensive treatment programs.”
Last year, 64,000 Americans died from opioid and drug overdoses. Common opioids are OxyContin, Vicodin, morphine, methadone, and heroin.
The public health emergency will last 90 days and can be renewed at the end of that period.
Some pharmaceutical corporations have implemented their own measures to limits on opioid use. As of Sept., only CVS Pharmacies distribute opioid prescriptions to first-time opioid users in seven-day supplies.
Two Students Murdered at Grambling State University (3)
On Oct. 24, a student and his friend were shot and killed on campus at Grambling State University in Louisiana. The victims were identified as junior Earl Andrews and Monquiarious Caldwell, both 23 from Farmerville, LA.
Jaylin M. Wayne turned himself in after a warrant for his arrest was issued on Oct. 26. The 19-year-old freshman at Grambling faces first degree murder charges.
The shooting took place after an altercation in the dorms that carried on into the courtyard. According to police, it appeared that Caldwell was coming to the aid of Andrews after he was shot.
“It became apparent very early in the investigation that this was not some random occurrence, that these people did know each other,” said Grambling State President Richard Gallot Jr. in an interview with the Associated Press.
As the tragedy took place during the school’s homecoming week, the students decided to hold a “peace walk” on Friday night instead of a homecoming pep rally.
JFK Files (1)
On Oct. 27, President Trump released thousands of classified documents regarding the assassination of JFK. The documents were released in cooperation with the CIA.
Kennedy’s assassination and the death of his assassin two days later has been subject of many theories.
In total, 2,800 documents were released, but more are scheduled to come after a six-month review period. The documents have been scheduled to be available for 25 years, but Trump said releasing them could bring “potentially irreversible harm.”
Catalonian Bid for Independence (4)
Hundreds of thousands rallied in downtown Barcelona on Sunday, two days after the separatist majority of Catalonia’s parliament defied Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and the Spanish courts by voting in favor of seceding from Spain.
Rajoy has fired the top three officials in charge of Catalonia’s police, the Mossos d’Esquadra, as part of a crackdown after Catalonia’s parliament voted Friday for a declaration of independence. Rajoy dissolved its parliament and ordered a new regional election on Dec. 21.
“I’ve never felt Spanish in my life,” said Anna Faure, of the city of Girona, some 60 miles northeast of Barcelona. Maps and world governments argue whether Faure’s home city is in Spain, but many secessionists consider it part of an independent republic of Catalonia.
The Associated Press contributed to this article.