According to the state of Minnesota, 28 counties are without in-hospital obstetrics services. Southeastern Minnesota’s Freeborn County will lose its in-hospital obstetrics service in 2020.

Source: Minnesota Department of Health, Health Economics Program Analysis of Hospital Annual Reports
According to the state of Minnesota, 28 counties are without in-hospital obstetrics services. Southeastern Minnesota’s Freeborn County will lose its in-hospital obstetrics service in 2020. Source: Minnesota Department of Health, Health Economics Program Analysis of Hospital Annual Reports

Fergus Falls

Fergus Falls was the focus of a story published in Spring 2017 by Der Spiegel, a German-based magazine, about the state of rural America after the 2016 election. The journalist, Claas Relotius, was fired in December 2018 after being exposed for fabricating many of his articles, including the one loosely based on Fergus Falls. Fergus Falls writer Michele Anderson wrote about the fabrications in an essay on Medium titled “Der Spiegel Journalist Messed With the Wrong Small Town.”

She wrote: “As a resident that moved here seven years ago, I would have happily taken him to my favorite coffee shop, where they serve locally crafted Stumbeanos coffee and a cappuccino as good as any coastal city. Or to my office at Springboard for the Arts, where we provide programs that help artists in the region make a living, and directly address the future of rural communities and culture. Maybe if he gained my trust I would share with him what I had learned since starting “Open Hearts,” an online forum that was quickly joined by over 200 local residents, and provides a supportive space to talk and organize around social justice and equity issues in Fergus Falls.

Anderson added: “Readers might appreciate knowing that small American towns are more complex than they imagine — that die-hard liberals like me can still magically live alongside conservative Republicans — that sometimes we even find some common ground and share a meal together, and take the time to try to understand each other’s viewpoints.”

Details: tinyurl.com/MWPDerSpiegel


When Not Everyone Is Welcoming

A Faribault man was charged for a hate crime when he allegedly used a pressure-washing hose against a 15-year-old Somali-American Muslim girl and her siblings while yelling racial slurs. The director of the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) believes many bias incidents are not reported by the victims. “Hijacked by Hate: American Philanthropy and the Islamophobia Network” is a CAIR report that lists the foundations used by anonymous special interest donors to funnel almost $125 million to anti- Muslim hate groups. A CAIR app has been created that shares “know your rights” information, and simplifies the process to report hate crimes and bias incidents. The national CAIR office has a civil rights department that takes a limited number of cases.

Details: cair.com