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VPM Daily Newscast: April 16, 2020

Anti-pipeline protester
People gathered in December 2018 to protest proposed pipelines and a compressor station in the historically Black community of Union Hill. (File Photo: Ben Paviour/VPM News)

Ban on hair cuts continues
At Gov. Ralph Northam's briefing yesterday, he extended his executive order closing non-essential businesses and public gatherings of more than 10 people until May 10. The governor said barber shops, though, are at the top of his list for reopening.

Commonwealth's Attorneys call for release of incarcerated minors
Nine Commonwealth’s Attorneys from across Virginia called on state officials to release incarcerated minors who don't pose a risk to the public. State officials say they have already transitioned many youth back to their communities, and are only keeping those who require trauma care.

Racial disparities revealed in COVID-19 deaths in Richmond
In Richmond, eight people have died of COVID-19 - all of them African American. State and local officials say they're tracking race and ethnicity, and planning interventions to help affected communities.

House of Delegates could vote from their living rooms
Speaker of the House Eileen Filler-Corn (D-Fairfax) is considering options for remote sessions in an effort to keep lawmakers safe and set an example for social distancing. Lawmakers will still meet in person next week, if only to confirm the rule changes.

Maybe it's the weather - maybe it's the statewide shutdown
People on bikes and runners have taken to the Capital Trail in big numbers since Northam issued a stay-at-home order. Researchers at UVA say regular exercise could reduce the risk of a COVID-19 complication that leads to death. If you visit, the trail foundation's director asks that you follow CDC guidelines around face covering - but some experts question the efficacy of face coverings for exercise.

VPM News is the staff byline for articles and podcasts written and produced by multiple reporters and editors.
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