Author

Erik Gunn

Erik Gunn

Senior Reporter Erik Gunn reports and writes on work and the economy, along with related subjects, for the Wisconsin Examiner. He spent 24 years as a freelance writer for Milwaukee Magazine, Isthmus, The Progressive, BNA Inc., and other publications, winning awards for investigative reporting, feature writing, beat coverage, business writing, and commentary. An East Coast native, he previously covered labor for The Milwaukee Journal after reporting for newspapers in upstate New York and northern Illinois. He's a graduate of Beloit College (English Comp.) and the Columbia School of Journalism. Off hours he is the Examiner's resident Springsteen and Jackson Browne fanboy and model railroad nerd.

CARDIFF, WALES - SEPTEMBER 14: A child wearing a face mask listens during a geography lesson at Whitchurch High School on September 14, 2021. (Photo by Matthew Horwood/Getty Images)

Menomonie school board member puts optional masking back on the agenda

By: - October 8, 2021

A northern Wisconsin school board is again being asked to drop a recent COVID-19 mask mandate when the board meets Monday, Oct. 11, after canceling a previous meeting to discuss loosening the requirement. The Menomonie school board’s agenda for its regularly scheduled meeting now includes a motion for an optional mask policy in place of […]

Rural Housing

Republicans housing bill drafts would mandate local zoning, development changes

By: - October 8, 2021

Streamlined development policies, new zoning mandates on local municipalities and new housing investment and loan programs are among the provisions in draft legislation that Republican lawmakers have begun circulating. Rep. Jim Steineke (R-Kaukauna) and Rep. Rob Summerfield (R-Bloomer) gave a broad overview of the draft bills at a press conference Thursday, and the drafts themselves […]

students at desks in classroom wearing masks for COVID-19 coronavirus prevention teacher also wearing mask bending over to help student

Lawsuit takes aim at schools that have dropped COVID-19 prevention policies

By: - October 8, 2021

The first of what a Minocqua brewer and political fundraiser says could be a pair of lawsuits against school districts for relaxing COVID-19 prevention measures has been filed in Waukesha County. Wisconsin Public Radio reported the class-action lawsuit was filed Wednesday against the Waukesha School District in federal court in Milwaukee. The suit blames the […]

newborn child

Nurse midwives to stay at St. Mary’s Hospital in Madison

By: - October 7, 2021

After an outpouring from patients and others in the women’s health care community, St. Mary’s Hospital in Madison announced Thursday it would continue its midwife program for in-hospital births instead of ending it as originally planned. “We will take the feedback our community has provided as an opportunity to strengthen and evolve the program through […]

Patients, providers protest plan to end St. Mary’s midwife program

By: - October 7, 2021

Patients, midwives and childbirth experts have rallied behind nurse midwives at a Madison hospital, pushing back at the hospital’s plan to cancel its nurse-midwife program at the end of this year. St. Mary’s Hospital told its four certified nurse midwives last week that the hospital was “unable to sustain” the program and would discontinue it […]

Classroom of desks row after row that are all empty

Draft bill proposes collective bargaining to address state’s teacher shortage

By: - October 7, 2021

Lawmakers unveiled legislation Wednesday to restore collective bargaining rights for Wisconsin public school teachers, rolling back provisions in the 2011 law that stripped virtually all of those rights. In addition to “persistent worker shortages” that have strained schools seeking to fill jobs for teachers, backers of the proposal — all Democrats — cite the COVID-19 […]

Vaccine Record card

Could COVID-19 infection immunity substitute for vaccine? Don’t count on it, says expert

By: - October 5, 2021

Employers who mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for applicants or employees would be required to waive that rule for unvaccinated people who have survived the illness under draft legislation that began circulating in the Capitol this week. The two kinds of immunity — that conferred by catching the virus and that available through the vaccine — […]

baby asleep on mums shoulder Black maternal health

DHS names director for new health equity office

By: - October 5, 2021

Michelle Robinson has been named to lead a new state agency that focuses on issues of equity in health care, Gov. Tony Evers and the state Department of Health Services (DHS) announced Tuesday. Robinson will begin her job as director of the Office of Health Equity at DHS starting Oct. 25. The equity office was […]

Mask required sign

Dane County extends mask order, Milwaukee holds off despite demands

By: - October 4, 2021

Dane County’s health officer extended the county’s mask requirement to slow the spread of COVID-19 Monday, with a new order that takes effect later this week and runs until Nov. 5. In Milwaukee, meanwhile, the city’s health commissioner has so far declined to institute a new mask order there, telling a city council committee that […]

child at a desk, covid mask

Parents say public health backlash risks their child’s life

By: - October 2, 2021

Parents of a 6-year-old child with Down syndrome are invoking federal law to ask a northwest Wisconsin school district to reinstate and maintain COVID-19 prevention measures in the child’s school. An attorney for the parents filed a formal request Friday for the Menomonie area school district in Dunn County to institute strong pandemic mitigation policies […]

Foxconn electric car deal now looks to Ohio instead of Wisconsin

By: - October 1, 2021

An electric car manufacturing deal that was touted as the most recent possible use for the Foxconn plant in Racine County now appears headed to Ohio. News outlets reported Thursday that Foxconn said it was planning to buy an auto assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio, to build electric vehicles for Fisker, under an agreement that […]

Person getting vaccine vaccination in arm shot by health care worker

Health agency urges flu shots for all, COVID-19 boosters for some

By: - September 30, 2021

Wisconsin residents should get flu shots promptly to reduce the chance of an influenza outbreak that could further strain a health care system already overloaded by resurgent cases of COVID-19, health officials said Thursday. In addition, a more limited group of people who have already been vaccinated for COVID-19 at least six months ago are […]