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Changes To U.S. Immigration Policy Are Affecting Pittsburgh's Restaurant Scene

Steph Chambers
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Tony Mao makes noodles at Everyday Noodles in Squirrel Hill.


Hand-pulling noodles is a coveted culinary craft that takes years to learn and even longer to master. The chefs are part athlete, part artist, and restaurants like Everyday Noodles in Squirrel Hill need immigrants to make their business model work. 

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette food writer and restaurant critic Melissa McCart found that Trump administration restrictions to the H-1B visa program have made it much harder to employ hand-pullers. She’s joined by immigration attorney Ellen Freeman to talk about both the series, which was sponsored by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, as well the broader issues facing would-be visa recipients in Pittsburgh.

Credit Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA
90.5 WESA
A view from the rear of a P1 bus just leaving Swissvale Station.

Elsewhere in the program, Democrats are looking ahead to 2019 when they will officially take control of the U.S. House. Pennsylvania Democrats will send nine representatives to Congress, up from the current five-member delegation. 90.5 WESA's Lucy Perkins sat down with Democratic Congressman Mike Doyle to talk about his legislative goals and what he thought about the election results.

Pittsburgh’s three busways cover nearly 20 miles and help remove thousands of cars from the city’s congested highways. For WESA’s Good Question! series, Katie Blackley takes a look at the history of Pittsburgh’s East Busway and tries to answer why it’s so difficult to get to Edgewood from the Hamnett Busway Station.

And Pittsburgh Filmmakers / Center for the Arts is proceeding with plans to sell its long-time Melwood Avenue headquarters. WESA’s Bill O’Driscoll explains that the sale is part of a larger move to consolidate operations amidst financial and leadership struggles and pivot its offerings -- dropping some classes and adding others. 

The Confluence, where the news comes together, is 90.5 WESA’s daily news program. Tune in weekdays at 9 a.m. to hear newsmakers and innovators join veteran journalist Kevin Gavin, taking an in-depth look at stories important to the Pittsburgh region. Find more episodes of The Confluence here.

Kiley Koscinski covers city government, policy and how Pittsburghers engage with city services. She also works as a fill-in host for All Things Considered. Kiley has previously served as a producer on The Confluence and Morning Edition.
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