Detroit Evening Report: Whooping cough cases on the rise, Stellantis requests factory emission increase + more

Listen to the latest episode of the “Detroit Evening Report” podcast.

Person coughing into their inner elbow.

This episode of the Detroit Evening Report includes the rise of whooping cough cases in Southeast Michigan, Stellantis seeking an increase in factory emission allowance, Juneteenth celebrations and more.

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Whooping cough cases on the rise in Southeast Michigan

Also known as pertussis, whooping cough is a highly contagious respiratory disease. The Washtenaw County Health Department is seeing sharp increases in cases with 21 confirmed in 2024 so far. The county normally saw 50 to 100 cases per year before the COVID-19 pandemic, but now numbers are rising again according to the CDC. Besides a cough that sounds like “whoop,” symptoms include a runny nose, nasal congestion and sneezing. The dry cough then becomes a wet cough after 1-2 weeks that brings up thick, stringy mucus.

Stellantis says emission levels allowance needs to be raised in order for Detroit factory to operate

Stellantis is trying to get permission from state environmental regulators to increase particulate matter emissions by a third. The automaker says the permit limits for their Detroit Assembly Complex are already the lowest in the industry and that their new system can’t operate by continuing with their small amount of particulate matter emissions.

Particulate matter is made of microscopic particles that can be inhaled and may enter the bloodstream, causing serious health issues, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Wayne County has experienced increased levels of particulate matter in recent years — one of the reasons the American Lung Association gave the county an “F” grade in this year’s annual State of the Air report. Detroit is also ranked as the 13th worst city in the nation for annual particulate pollution. The University of Michigan School of Public Health estimated that twice the number of Detroiters are killed each year by air pollution than gun violence.

Residents can file public comments with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) until July 23 online or by phone at 517-582-5095. There is also an in-person hearing and presentation on the proposal on July 17 at 6 p.m. at Detroit Southeastern High School.

The Brooke on Bagley opens near Michigan Central Station

Mayor Duggan and developers Woodborn Partners hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony on Wednesday for The Brooke on Bagley. It’s a new mixed use and mixed income development as part of the Strategic Neighborhood Fund initiative. The $24 million development includes 78 units — 16 of them designated as affordable housing. The development sits a mile away from the renovated Michigan Central Station and is part of the new development in the Southwest Detroit community.

Detroit Riverfront Conservancy hosting Juneteenth celebration

Juneteenth is on Wednesday, June 19. As part of the celebration, the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy is hosting Juneteenth in the Cut: Stories from Black Bottom at the Dequindre Cut from 2-7 p.m.. There will be storytelling, performances and interactive opportunities for all ages. WDET’s Nick Austin will host the event, and the WDET street team will be onsite. Get details HERE.

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  • Hernz Laguerre
    Hernz Laguerre Jr. is a Multimedia Journalist at 101.9 WDET. He is one of the co-host for "Detroit Evening Report," one of the weekend anchors for "Weekend Edition," the producer for our political podcast, "MichMash," and reports on arts, culture and politics.