Scott Neuman | WYPR

Scott Neuman

Scott Neuman is a reporter and editor, working mainly on breaking news for NPR's digital and radio platforms.

He brings to NPR years of experience as a journalist at a variety of news organizations based all over the world. He came to NPR from The Associated Press in Bangkok, Thailand, where he worked as an editor on the news agency's Asia Desk. Prior to that, Neuman worked in Hong Kong with The Wall Street Journal, where among other things he reported extensively from Pakistan in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. He also spent time with the AP in New York, and in India as a bureau chief for United Press International.

A native Hoosier, Neuman's roots in public radio (and the Midwest) run deep. He started his career at member station WBNI in Fort Wayne, and worked later in Illinois for WNIU/WNIJ in DeKalb/Rockford and WILL in Champaign-Urbana.

Neuman is a graduate of Purdue University. He lives with his wife, Noi, on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland.

After months of prohibiting in-person visits to relatives in nursing homes amid COVID-19 fears, New York says it will begin easing those restrictions for facilities that are certified as virus-free.

The change comes after the state — one of those hardest-hit by the virus — has seen thousands of deaths in nursing homes and long-term care facilities.

According to the revised rules issued Friday by the New York State Department of Health, visitors will be allowed if a nursing home or adult-care facility hasn't had any coronavirus cases for 28 days.

Georgia's governor and the mayor of the state's capital and largest city are at odds over COVID-19 restrictions, with Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms announcing a return to tough measures to control a spike in coronavirus infections and Gov. Brian Kemp insisting that her order is "non-binding and legally unenforceable."

Bottoms, a Democrat, announced Friday that she was bringing Atlanta back to Phase 1 reopening — the most restrictive post-lockdown measures that require all residents to stay home except for essential trips.

Mississippi's governor has imposed mandatory use of face masks and limited nonessential gatherings in 13 counties, including those that cover the state's most populous cities, as COVID-19 cases have surged in recent days, causing record hospitalizations.

Days after Brazil's president said he had contracted COVID-19, another South American leader, Bolivia's interim president, Jeanine Áñez, said she too had tested positive for the coronavirus.

"I feel good, I feel strong, I will continue to work virtually from my isolation," Áñez said in a video posted to her Twitter account.

A group representing Brazilian journalists says it will file suit against the country's president, Jair Bolsonaro, after he took off a protective mask as he spoke with reporters about his COVID-19 diagnosis.

The word "slur" has a number of meanings in English, but the one that has concerned Scrabble aficionados and Hasbro, which owns the U.S. and Canadian trademark for the popular board game, means "a derogatory or insulting term applied to particular group of people."

On Wednesday, the North American Scrabble Players Association announced that derogatory language would be removed from the game's official word list.

Several Democratic-led states and the District of Columbia have joined in a lawsuit against Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, accusing the Trump administration of trying to unlawfully divert pandemic relief funds from public schools to private schools.

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra announced the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Michigan, Maine, New Mexico and Wisconsin have also joined.

Cinema chains, including AMC Entertainment, Cinemark and Regal Cinemas, have filed suit against New Jersey's governor for refusing to allow them to reopen amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

A new United Nations report warns that more diseases that pass from animals to humans, such as COVID-19, are likely to emerge as habitats are ravaged by wildlife exploitation, unsustainable farming practices and climate change.

Updated at 9:23 p.m. ET

President Trump followed up a pair of divisive speeches over the holiday weekend on Monday by castigating NASCAR for banning the Confederate flag and calling on its only Black driver to apologize for "a hoax" involving a rope fashioned into a noose that the FBI later determined wasn't a hate crime.

Prominent Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Nathan Law says he has fled the city following the enactment of a new Beijing-sponsored crackdown on free expression, telling NPR that the new national security legislation amounts to a "complete destruction" of Hong Kong's autonomy.

House members unanimously passed an extension of the $660 billion Paycheck Protection Program, aimed at helping small businesses weather the COVID-19 pandemic. The voice vote came a day after the Senate approved the measure.

The PPP had expired Tuesday at midnight. If President Trump signs the extension, the program will operate through Aug. 8.

The federal agency charged with preventing terrorist attacks and securing the border announced Wednesday that it would deploy personnel across the country to carry out President Trump's orders to protect statues and monuments from vandalism amid ongoing protests for racial justice.

Acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf said the department has established a Protecting American Communities Task Force to secure historic landmarks against "violent anarchists and rioters."

Vice President Pence wore a face mask to a public briefing on Tuesday where the message from the surgeon general and others was clear: Americans should to do the same while in public to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Pence appeared at the U.S. Health Service Commission Corps headquarters in Rockville, Md., joined by other members of the White House's coronavirus task force, including Surgeon General Jerome Adams.

The vice president and others removed their masks only when delivering remarks.

European passenger-jet maker Airbus announced Tuesday that it will cut 15,000 jobs over the next year, as the airline industry faces unprecedented losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Airbus, which employs about 135,000 people worldwide, has seen a 40% drop in its business since the spread of the coronavirus.

In an about-face, Arizona's Gov. Doug Ducey has ordered the state's bars, gyms, movie theaters and water parks to shut down for at least 30 days amid thousands of new coronavirus cases in the state.

Ducey issued the order Monday to go into effect from 8 p.m. local time, citing concern over a recent spike in new cases — including a one-day record of more than 3,800 in the state on Sunday. It was the seventh time in the past 10 days that new cases in Arizona exceeded 3,000. He also ordered public schools to delay the start of classes until Aug. 17.

The head of the World Health Organization is warning that the COVID-19 pandemic is speeding up, and he criticized governments that have failed to establish reliable contact tracing to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Speaking at a briefing in Geneva, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said: "We all want this to be over. We all want to get on with our lives. But the hard reality is this is not even close to being over."

"Although many countries have made some progress, globally the pandemic is actually speeding up," he said.

A judge in Minnesota has set a March 8 trial date for the four former police officers accused in the death of George Floyd.

At an omnibus hearing Monday, Hennepin County Judge Peter Cahill said the trial date assumed that the former Minneapolis Police Department officers — Derek Chauvin, 44, who knelt on Floyd's neck and is charged with second-degree murder; J. Alexander Kueng, 26; Thomas Lane, 37; and Tou Thao, 34 — would be tried together, but he said that he expected motions to be filed by their attorneys for separate trials.

North Korea has pledged to redeploy troops into demilitarized areas near its border with South Korea, a day after it blew up a liaison office in a provocation that has markedly increased tensions between the two arch-rivals.

Brazil on Tuesday reported a national record of nearly 35,000 new coronavirus cases in a 24-hour period, even as the government has insisted that the outbreak is under control.

The health ministry added 34,918 new cases, but Brazilian media, in collaboration with state health departments, said the figure was probably undercounted by a few thousand. The ministry also announced 1,282 additional COVID-19 deaths, bringing the total to more than 45,000 since the pandemic began.

The Voice of America's two top executives stepped down Monday following Senate confirmation of President Trump's pick to run the agency that oversees the international broadcaster.

Paul Whelan, a U.S. citizen who was arrested in Moscow in 2018 on charges of espionage, has been found guilty in a closed trial and sentenced to 16 years in prison in a case that has strained relations between the two countries.

The verdict was read in a Moscow court on Monday as Whelan stood in the defendant's cage holding a sign that read "Sham trial!"

France's President Emmanuel Macron announced Sunday a further easing of restrictions imposed after the COVID-19 outbreak, beginning with the full reopening of cafes and restaurants and the lifting of bans on travel from European countries.

France, which has been among the countries in Europe hardest-hit by COVID-19, with nearly 30,000 deaths, has nonetheless seen its daily count of new cases fall dramatically since a peak in mid-April.

Maria Ressa, the former CNN journalist who co-founded the Philippines' Rappler news site, has been convicted of cyber libel, a controversial charge that she has denied, maintaining that it's a politically motivated effort to silence independent journalism in the country.

Prosecutors in Sweden announced Wednesday the name of the man they believe gunned down Prime Minister Olof Palme more than three decades ago on a Stockholm street.

At a news conference in the capital, chief prosecutor Krister Petersson identified the likely assassin as Stig Engström, a graphic designer who was interviewed along with more than a dozen others who said they saw someone fleeing the scene immediately after the attack in 1986. At the time, Engström was briefly considered a suspect.

The American Civil Liberties Union says a federal judge has temporarily blocked the deportation of a 16-year-old Honduran boy in a case that challenges the Trump administration's recently enacted policy, based on federal health statutes, of expelling unaccompanied minors without due process.

The ACLU says the boy entered the United States alone last week and was scheduled to be deported Wednesday. According to the ACLU, Judge Emmet Sullivan of the D.C. Circuit blocked the deportation late Tuesday.

A judge in Richmond, Va., has issued a temporary injunction blocking removal of a massive statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee until a lawsuit seeking to halt the removal can be heard.

Amid nationwide protests calling for an end to police brutality against African Americans following the killing of George Floyd, Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam last week ordered the statue removed "as soon as possible" and placed in storage.

The editor-in-chief of Bon Appétit, Adam Rapoport, has stepped down after an undated photograph of him dressed in a racially insensitive costume surfaced, as well as accusations of discrimination and lack of inclusiveness at the magazine.

The photograph, posted on social media, shows Rapoport and his wife, Simone Shubuck, at a Halloween party wearing stereotypical costumes meant to portray Puerto Rican dress. The photo was reportedly first posted to Shubuck's Instagram feed but has since been taken down.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern says the country has officially eradicated COVID-19 and will return to normal after the last-known infected person recovered.

Isolation and quarantine for those arriving from abroad will continue.

The announcement comes weeks after Ardern's government began easing up on restrictions after New Zealand all but eliminated community transmission of the new coronavirus.

The head of The New York Times editorial page, James Bennet, has resigned after he oversaw the publication last week of a controversial opinion piece by Republican Sen. Tom Cotton that called for deploying federal troops to end unrest sparked by the death of George Floyd.

The newspaper on Sunday announced the resignation of Bennet, who became editor of the page in 2016. In a note to staff announcing the departure, publisher A.G. Sulzberger cited "a significant breakdown in our editing processes."

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