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Sept. 26-Oct. 2 Explained: Biden’s Train Ride, Learning Hubs & Navigating Loss During The Pandemic

Andrew Harnik
Democratic presidential candidate former Vice President Joe Biden and his wife Jill Biden board their train at Amtrak's Pittsburgh Train Station, Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2020, in Pittsburgh.

On this week's Explainer:

Government and accountability reporter Lucy Perkins was there when former Vice President and Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden was in town this week, riding an Amtrak train through parts of Ohio and western Pennsylvania. 

His visit took place after a chaotic presidential debate earlier this week. During his stop, he said that during President Donald Trump's nearly four years in office, he "forgot the forgotten man."

Education reporter Sarah Schneider says as the coronavirus pandemic stretches on, many parents continue to be in the impossible position of trying to work while also helping their kids learn remotely. In response, Allegheny County has partnered with United Way and the early childhood education advocacy group Trying Together to distribute federal funding to 60 learning hubs. These are places where kids can come during the day to complete their online schoolwork.

Science and Health reporter Sarah Boden takes a look at how some things that have always been hard, like the death of a loved one or losing a job, can feel completely unnavigable right now. Mental health professionals say that even without a big loss, we're all experiencing a type of mourning as we long for the lives we used to live. They also say the pandemic will have a significant impact on how we process personal and collective loss.

Pittsburgh Explainer is hosted by Liz Reid and produced by Katie Blackley. New episodes come out every Friday. Subscribe on iTunesGoogle PlayStitcher and Spotify.


Katie Blackley is a digital editor/producer for 90.5 WESA, where she writes, edits and generates both web and on-air content for features and daily broadcast. She's the producer and host of our Good Question! series and podcast. She also covers history and the LGBTQ community. kblackley@wesa.fm
Liz Reid began working at WESA in 2013 as a general assignment reporter and weekend host. Since then, she’s worked as the Morning Edition producer, health & science reporter and as an editor.