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The Front Porch

Welcome to “The Front Porch,” where we tackle the tough issues facing Appalachia the same way you talk with your friends on the porch. Hosts include WVPB Executive Director and recovering reporter Scott Finn; conservative lawyer, columnist and rabid "Sherlock" fan Laurie Lin; and liberal columnist and avid goat herder Rick Wilson, who works for the American Friends Service Committee. An edited version of “The Front Porch” airs Fridays at 4:50 p.m. on West Virginia Public Broadcasting’s radio network, and the full version is available at wvpublic.org and as a podcast as well. Share your opinions with us about these issues, and let us know what you'd like us to discuss in the future. Send a tweet to @radiofinn or @wvpublicnews, or e-mail Scott at sfinn @ wvpublic.org The Front Porch is underwritten by the Pulitzer Prize-winning Charleston Gazette-Mail. Find the latest news, traffic and weather on its CGM App. Download it in your app store, and check out its website: http://www

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Who Overdoses and Why?

Most people who overdose on opioids have seen a health care provider in the last year, and many had recently been released from jail, according to a new study from West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources. This suggests that overdoses can be prevented with the right intervention. Here are some of the findings, according to the Charleston Gazette-Mail: Eighty-one percent of people who died of overdose interacted with at least one type of health care provider in the 12 months prior

11mins

26 Jan 2018

Rank #1

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Why Is West Virginia So Poor? And What Can We Do About It?

When the New York Times wanted to do a 50th anniversary story on the War on Poverty, they came to McDowell County, West Virginia. "Poorest Counties Still Losing the War on Want" reads one of their headlines. On this week's Front Porch podcast, we debate how West Virginia can avoid being the poster child for poverty 50 years from now. Is it the resource curse? Lack of investment in education? Burdensome regulations and taxes? Or our own low opinion of ourselves? Welcome to “The Front Porch,”

25mins

20 Apr 2018

Rank #2

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Podcast cover

Why Is West Virginia So Poor? And What Can We Do About It?

When the New York Times wanted to do a 50th anniversary story on the War on Poverty, they came to McDowell County, West Virginia. "Poorest Counties Still Losing the War on Want" reads one of their headlines. On this week's Front Porch podcast, we debate how West Virginia can avoid being the poster child for poverty 50 years from now. Is it the resource curse? Lack of investment in education? Burdensome regulations and taxes? Or our own low opinion of ourselves? Welcome to “The Front Porch,”

25mins

20 Apr 2018

Rank #3

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The Future of The Front Porch

Front Porch host and producer Scott Finn is moving to Vermont. What does this mean for the podcast? We discuss the role of civil debate and WVPB's commitment to it on this Front Porch podcast. Welcome to “The Front Porch,” where we tackle the tough issues facing Appalachia the same way you talk with your friends on the porch. Hosts include WVPB Executive Director and recovering reporter Scott Finn; economist Jessi Troyan of the free-market Cardinal Institute; and liberal columnist and avid goat

10mins

12 Apr 2018

Rank #4

Most Popular Podcasts

Podcast cover

The Future of The Front Porch

Front Porch host and producer Scott Finn is moving to Vermont. What does this mean for the podcast? We discuss the role of civil debate and WVPB's commitment to it on this Front Porch podcast. Welcome to “The Front Porch,” where we tackle the tough issues facing Appalachia the same way you talk with your friends on the porch. Hosts include WVPB Executive Director and recovering reporter Scott Finn; economist Jessi Troyan of the free-market Cardinal Institute; and liberal columnist and avid goat

10mins

12 Apr 2018

Rank #5

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Should SNAP Recipients Have to Work?

Governor Jim Justice recently signed a bill that would require some able-bodied SNAP recipients to either work or volunteer 20 hours a week. On this week's Front Porch podcast, Rick Wilson argues this new requirement won't lead more people to work, and will hurt families and West Virginia'e economy. Meanwhile, Jessi Troyan argues there are deeper economic forces at play making it hard for SNAP recipients to find work. Also, we discuss the passage of the noodling bill. What's noodling? Rick

15mins

30 Mar 2018

Rank #6

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Should SNAP Recipients Have to Work?

Governor Jim Justice recently signed a bill that would require some able-bodied SNAP recipients to either work or volunteer 20 hours a week. On this week's Front Porch podcast, Rick Wilson argues this new requirement won't lead more people to work, and will hurt families and West Virginia'e economy. Meanwhile, Jessi Troyan argues there are deeper economic forces at play making it hard for SNAP recipients to find work. Also, we discuss the passage of the noodling bill. What's noodling? Rick

15mins

30 Mar 2018

Rank #7

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Fixing Needle Exchanges without Demonizing People with Addiction

The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department's needle exchange program has reduced disease and helped people with addiction find treatment. But first responders and Charleston Mayor Danny Jones are upset at the proliferation of needles and people with addiction coming to their city.

19mins

23 Mar 2018

Rank #8

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Fixing Needle Exchanges without Demonizing People with Addiction

The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department's needle exchange program has reduced disease and helped people with addiction find treatment. But first responders and Charleston Mayor Danny Jones are upset at the proliferation of needles and people with addiction coming to their city.

19mins

23 Mar 2018

Rank #9

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Remembering the WV Teacher Strike with Brad McElhinny

Brad McElhinny almost missed the first rumblings of the teacher's strike. This issue was on almost nobody's radar screen until MLK Day, when Brad stumbled into West Virginia Education Association president Dale Lee at a teacher's rally at the Capitol.

20mins

16 Mar 2018

Rank #10

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What Are the Lessons from the Teachers' Strike?

Now that the teacher and school employee work stoppage is finally at an end, Rick Wilson and Jessi Troyan are on the Front Porch take a look back and try to determine what comes next. Is this really a resolution where everyone involved can "take home a win"? With talk of similar actions in similar actions in Pittsburgh and Oklahoma, could this be a sign of more to come? What does way the strike was handled on both sides say about West Virginia as a state? Welcome to “The Front Porch,” where we

16mins

9 Mar 2018

Rank #11

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What Are the Lessons from the Teachers' Strike?

Now that the teacher and school employee work stoppage is finally at an end, Rick Wilson and Jessi Troyan are on the Front Porch take a look back and try to determine what comes next. Is this really a resolution where everyone involved can "take home a win"? With talk of similar actions in similar actions in Pittsburgh and Oklahoma, could this be a sign of more to come? What does way the strike was handled on both sides say about West Virginia as a state? Welcome to “The Front Porch,” where we

16mins

9 Mar 2018

Rank #12

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Is the Teacher Strike a Political Awakening? Or Labor's Last Gasp?

The walkout of school employees is entering its second week, and there's no sign of it stopping yet. Will teachers and their supporters "remember in November," and if so, will this help unions and their political supporters? Or will there be a backlash that cancels out labor's efforts in West Virginia?

13mins

2 Mar 2018

Rank #13

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How Can We Resolve the Teacher Work Stoppage?

Every public school in West Virginia was closed Thursday and Friday as thousands of school employees flooded the state Capitol, asking for larger pay increases and a fix for the state employees health insurance system. The Legislature has already passed a 2 percent pay raise for all state employees and promised to freeze insurance premiums for 17 months - but many teachers and school employees say it's not enough.

22mins

23 Feb 2018

Rank #14

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What Works in Recovery from Opioid Addiction

What works in recovery from opioid addiction, and how can we educate West Virginians about it? That's what we learn this week from Dr. Michael Brumage, new director of the Office of Drug Control Policy in West Virginia.

26mins

16 Feb 2018

Rank #15

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The Opportunity Cost of Opioid Addiction

$8.8 billion. That's what a new study estimates the opioid epidemic is costing the West Virginia economy every year. That's 12 percent of the state's GDP, and more than any other state. On this week's Front Porch podcast, we debate the opportunity cost of opioid addiction for our economy - and how we can get out of this mess.

18mins

9 Feb 2018

Rank #16

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The Opportunity Cost of Opioid Addiction

$8.8 billion. That's what a new study estimates the opioid epidemic is costing the West Virginia economy every year. That's 12 percent of the state's GDP, and more than any other state. On this week's Front Porch podcast, we debate the opportunity cost of opioid addiction for our economy - and how we can get out of this mess.

18mins

9 Feb 2018

Rank #17

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Sustaining 'Sustained Outrage' after the Charleston Gazette-Mail Bankruptcy

Legendary Charleston Gazette Publisher Ned Chilton called it "sustained outrage." He said it wasn't enough to do a story or two about an injustice - it took in-depth coverage to fix a wrong. But with the Gazette-Mail going bankrupt, supporters are concerned about that tradition of investigative reporting. How can we keep accountability journalism healthy and strong in West Virginia? On this week's Front Porch podcast, we discuss the Gazette's legacy - from a Pulitzer Prize just last year for

13mins

2 Feb 2018

Rank #18

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Winning the Fight Against Addiction in West Virginia

"Recovery is possible!" is a mantra in addiction treatment. Lois Vance says recovery is happening every day at Cabin Creek Health Systems, where she works.

17mins

19 Jan 2018

Rank #19

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How WVPB Is Fighting Opioid Addiction and Preparing Tomorrow's Workers

Gov. Justice’s second State of the State made full use of several props, two whiteboards and his entire girls’ basketball team. Justice also laid out what he thought was really important in his speech . Here are two themes I heard: finally turning the corner on the opioid epidemic, and helping young people find technical and vocational careers.

8mins

11 Jan 2018

Rank #20