Published August 23, 2021

The urgency of vaccinating elder care professionals. A discussion of barriers to equality and how to break them. And a mystery—why are some towns shrinking in the Garden State? Rutgers experts and community members explore the issues.

A federal mandate that nursing home workers be vaccinated against COVID-19 is welcome news, says Stephen Crystal, a professor at Rutgers’ Institute for Health, Health Care Policy, and Aging Research. He tells NJ Spotlight News, though, that the Biden administration’s timetable is too vague. “This is a fundamental patient safety issue,” Crystal says, “and needs to be addressed quickly rather than ‘with all deliberate speed.’ The emergency [regulations] need to be issued immediately as this is indeed an emergency.”

NJ Spotlight News | Federal vaccination mandate for nursing home workers gets broad support in NJ

Looking at ways to overcome obstacles to women’s equality, Forbes compiles expertise from a variety of thought leaders, including Kimberly Peeler-Allen of the Center for American Women and Politics. “The three biggest barriers to achieving equality are conscious and subconscious sexism, a collective scarcity mindset, and a lack of enforcement of laws that will expand and protect equality,” says Peeler-Allen. Elaborating on those three points, she also argues that “the voices calling for gender equality must be diverse in every way” to transcend marginalization of what have historically been considered “women’s issues.”

Forbes | Achieving a gender just world: Thought leaders provide actionable ways to break through equality’s biggest barriers

Over the past decade, 200 New Jersey towns have lost population, reports NJ101.5. University Professor James Hughes ENG’65, GSNB’69,’71 attributes the declines to movement of young people out of smaller, more rural areas. “That was essentially sprawl withdrawal by millennials,” says Hughes, an economist and former dean of the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy. “Young people graduating from college may have gone home for a while and then decided, ‘Hey, this is boring living in Sussex. I’m moving to Jersey City, Hoboken, and the like.’”

NJ101.5 | Despite NJ population gain, people are fleeing from these 200 towns

Quoting Saladin Ambar GSNB’08 of the Eagleton Institute of Politics, the Record explores how likely or unlikely it would be for Election Day and other observances to become national holidays in the wake of Juneteenth reaching that status. “Part of what we have to think about is…the political environment that has made Juneteenth a federal holiday but also what may make Election Day less likely to become one,” says Ambar. Although he hopes that Election Day does ultimately gain federal holiday designation, Ambar says it faces challenges due to, among other reasons, the current battle over voting restrictions. | With Juneteenth now a national holiday, could Election Day and Indigenous Peoples Day be next?

If people are still studying and speaking a supposedly extinct language like Latin, is it really dead? Discover features insight from John Fisher, a classics professor in the School of Arts and Sciences at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, on whether the tongue of ancient Rome has truly reached its quietus. “A dead language isn’t what people think it is,” says Fisher, framing the discussion in terms of changeability rather than mortality. Although some Latin enthusiasts still try to expand its vocabulary, Fisher says that “classical Latin is incredibly stable”—in a state more like suspended animation than death.

Discover | Latin is dead, but not extinct

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