Author

Erik Gunn

Erik Gunn

Deputy Editor Erik Gunn reports and writes on work and the economy, health policy and 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.

Health care workers call out lawmakers who want to throw out mask order

By: - August 6, 2020

Frustrated at threats from Republican lawmakers to overturn Wisconsin’s statewide mask mandate aimed at reducing the spread of COVID-19, a group of health care workers and supporters told reporters on the steps of the state Capitol on Thursday that the Legislature should set other priorities. The Thursday press conference was organized by nurses and the […]

Concert venue

Show halls seek financial aid in next COVID-19 relief from Congress

By: - August 5, 2020

After going dark in the spring because of the COVID-19 pandemic and anticipating no more public performances for the rest of 2020, independent concert venues mobilized this week to get public backing for federal legislation to rescue them financially. In Wisconsin, 72 independent venues have signed on to the effort, ranging from the Pabst and […]

National Guard poll worker

Wisconsin National Guard mobilized again to help with Aug. 11 election

By: - August 5, 2020

With the state in search of as many as 900 poll workers, Wisconsin National Guard members will be deployed to assist with the partisan primary election on Tuesday, Aug. 11, Gov. Tony Evers announced Wednesday. The number of Guard members to be deployed to support the Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC) hasn’t been determined. The mobilization […]

Raising again their Raging voices

By: - August 5, 2020

It had been months since they felt they could get together safely. But on Tuesday, Aug. 4, a dozen Raging Grannies decided they could wait no longer to once more raise their voices in song for peace and justice. News of the federal incursion of militarized law enforcement agents in Portland, Ore., propelled them to […]

Children in an elementary school classroom. (Getty Images photo)

Evers says schools will make their own decisions for the fall

By: - August 5, 2020

Gov. Tony Evers reiterated Tuesday that he has no plans to issue a statewide order forbidding schools from holding in-person classes this fall, despite statements to the contrary from Republican lawmakers. Asked at a media briefing Tuesday afternoon about  a statement from Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) voicing suspicion that Evers would “flip-flop” on […]

Baldwin jobs bill gets endorsements from state workforce development groups

By: - August 4, 2020

A U.S. Senate bill to create a long-term program of subsidized jobs for people put out of work by the COVID-19 pandemic has gained support from Milwaukee’s mayor and a collection of Wisconsin social welfare and workforce development organizations. “Millions of Americans are unemployed and struggling to make ends meet, so we need a bold, […]

Missy Hughes, WEDC CEO

‘How are we going to fix that? How are we going to move forward?’

By: - August 4, 2020

Months after lawmakers — and even the state’s top economic development strategist — thought it would be waning, COVID-19 still threatens Wisconsin, as its economy struggles to recover. Industries are “reeling” — and so are other sectors of the state that are critical to its long-term success: education, child care and health care. As grim […]

Voters wait in line at Washington High School (Photo by Isiah Holmes)

CDC report: Voting in Milwaukee fell April 7, but COVID-19 cases didn’t rise

By: - August 3, 2020

The April 7 election doesn’t appear to have sparked a surge in COVID-19 infections in Milwaukee, according to a new report from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) — but it also saw overall voter participation cut nearly in half and close to an 80% drop in in-person voting in the city […]

A surgical mask and an N95 mask hang on display for sale at a pharmacy. Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images.

Battle lines harden over governor’s new health emergency, mask order

By: - July 31, 2020

On the day before Gov. Tony Evers’ mandatory mask rule takes effect, reaction swiftly hardened Friday along predictable lines. More Republicans lined up to condemn the governor’s new health emergency declaration and the accompanying mask order, announced Thursday to curb the state’s renewed surge of COVID-19, which takes effect Saturday, August 1. Senate Majority Leader […]

Gov. Tony Evers

Evers declares new health emergency, mandates masks statewide

By: - July 30, 2020

With COVID-19 infections steadily rising by as much as a thousand detected cases per day, Gov. Tony Evers declared a new public health emergency Thursday, and with it, announced a statewide mandatory mask order to take effect Saturday, August 1. “A few months ago, Wisconsin was in pretty good shape. The numbers were improving and […]

a row of three yellow school buses

Will pandemic school be a trade-off between safety and equity?

By: - July 30, 2020

What are the choices that confront parents, school districts and communities this fall, as the first day of the school year draws near and the COVID-19 pandemic shows no signs of abating? Barely a month from the first day of the fall semester, some school districts are backing away from starting the year with in-person […]

Disability Scrabble tiles

Frostman: DWD is working to get SSDI claims in motion

By: - July 29, 2020

Wisconsin workers who also collect federal disability payments and have lost work hours because of COVID-19 should start applying for federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), and the state unemployment insurance system will work to move those applications along, the state’s labor secretary told the Wisconsin Examiner on Tuesday. Late Monday, the state Department of Workforce […]