Alanna Elder, Report for America Reporter

Alanna Elder
Alanna Elder is a Report for America corps member focusing on Latinos in central Pennsylvania and the 2020 elections, how the growing community will make its influence felt, what barriers to voting exist and how it might affect this battleground state. Previously, she was deputy editor and podcast producer for the Latin America News Dispatch while pursuing a master’s degree in journalism and Latin American and Caribbean Studies at New York University. She has also worked for NPR member stations in Petersburg, Alaska and Laramie, Wyoming.

Latest by Alanna Elder

Meet the four candidates competing in the special election for senate district 48

In less than two months, voters in Lebanon and parts of Dauphin and York counties will choose a replacement for late state Sen. Dave Arnold, who won the seat in a special election held last year.

By Alanna Elder

Child advocates train community members on recognizing and reporting abuse

Child abuse reports dropped across Pennsylvania last year, raising concerns from child welfare professionals that the COVID-19 pandemic isolated children from the school employees, healthcare providers, and other community members who are legally required to report suspected abuse. Lebanon County, where two high-profile child abuse investigations came to light in the last year, has seen a different trend since the beginning of the school year.

By Alanna Elder

Commonwealth Court schedules trial for education funding lawsuit

Plaintiffs and their lawyers are is publicizing the tentative start date of September 9 to draw attention to their cause.
By Alanna Elder

For multiracial families, mental health experts say open discussions about identity are a must

In a recent Toward Racial Justice discussion, Daniels and other panelists talked through some of the dynamics in multiracial families, focusing mostly on families made up of Black and White relatives.

By Alanna Elder

Upper Adams School District releases anti-racism plan

The district describes its approach to “ensure [it is] educating all students in a safe, healthy and non-discriminatory learning environment” while keeping the community up to date on its progress.

By Alanna Elder

Advocates say 2021 is key for education equity

Equity in education dollars is a longstanding debate in the Commonwealth, which is the defendant in a lawsuit arguing that its mode of funding is unconstitutional. Advocates who participated in WITF’s Toward Racial Justice panel on education funding say now is the time to begin closing the gaps.

By Alanna Elder

Groups call for enactment of state and federal “moral agenda”

As a follow-up to its voter engagement work last year, advocates with the Poor People’s Campaign and other groups presented a list of policy items to lawmakers in 30 states including Pennsylvania.

By Alanna Elder

Former Biglerville students form network of support against racism

At one point, each post on the Racism at Biglerville Facebook page carried several threads of comments. As more alumni added stories, the allegations grew in scope — from accounts of racist bullying to racially biased discipline to sexual harassment — and they spanned decades in time.

By Alanna Elder

Public health experts say equity requires long-term commitment

Research from the Kaiser Family Foundation suggests more Black and Latino Americans, who are disproportionately affected by the health and economic impacts of the pandemic, say they are willing to take the vaccine than in surveys from late last year. 

But hesitation is still an issue, and public health experts say there is work to do to close equity gaps in vaccine distribution. 

By Alanna Elder

Community group works to engage residents around Harrisburg’s comprehensive plan

Harrisburg City Council is scheduled to discuss the city’s comprehensive plan this month and next. It is a long-awaited update to a plan created in the mid-1970s and a rough outline of how the city wants to approach issues like housing and economic development in coming years and decades.

By Alanna Elder