Greg Allen

As NPR's Miami correspondent, Greg Allen reports on the diverse issues and developments tied to the Southeast. He covers everything from breaking news to economic and political stories to arts and environmental stories. He moved into this role in 2006, after four years as NPR's Midwest correspondent.

Allen was a key part of NPR's coverage of the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, providing some of the first reports on the disaster. He was on the front lines of NPR's coverage of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, arriving in New Orleans before the storm arrived and filing on the chaos and flooding that hit the city as the levees broke. Allen's reporting played an important role in NPR's coverage of the aftermath and the rebuilding of New Orleans, as well as in coverage of the BP oil spill which brought new hardships to the Gulf coast.

More recently, he played key roles in NPR's reporting in 2018 on the devastation caused on Florida's panhandle by Hurricane Michael and on the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

As NPR's only correspondent in Florida, Allen covered the dizzying boom and bust of the state's real estate market, as well as the state's important role in the 2008 and 2016 presidential elections. He's produced stories highlighting the state's unique culture and natural beauty, from Miami's Little Havana to the Everglades.

Allen has been with NPR for three decades as an editor, executive producer, and correspondent.

Before moving into reporting, Allen served as the executive producer of NPR's national daily live call-in show, Talk of the Nation. Prior to that, Allen spent a decade at NPR's Morning Edition. As editor and senior editor, he oversaw developing stories and interviews, helped shape the program's editorial direction, and supervised the program's staff.

Before coming to NPR, Allen was a reporter with NPR member station WHYY-FM in Philadelphia from 1987 to 1990. His radio career includes working an independent producer and as a reporter/producer at NPR member station WYSO-FM in Yellow Springs, Ohio.

Allen graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1977, with a B.A. cum laude. He began his career at WXPN-FM as a student, and there he was a host and producer for a weekly folk music program that included interviews, features, and live and recorded music.

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For nearly five months, nursing homes, assisted living facilities and the people who live in them have been on lockdown. Many states, including Florida, have not allowed in-person visits since March. The policy was imposed to shield a very vulnerable population from COVID-19. But as NPR's Greg Allen reports, families, health care workers and elected officials say the isolation is taking a toll on the people it's designed to protect.

For the fourth day in a row, Florida set a record for the number of COVID-19 deaths with 257 deaths reported Friday. A total of 6,843 people in Florida have died so far from the coronavirus.

Epidemiologists say that number will keep rising following the surge in cases seen over the past six weeks.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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It is only July, but it's already busy for the National Hurricane Center. As NPR's Greg Allen reports, just this week, forecasters are issuing advisories on three systems - two in the Atlantic, one in the Pacific.

Florida reported its largest number of deaths in a single day from the coronavirus: 173 on Thursday. The state says 10,249 people tested positive for the virus.

In Florida, hospitals are being stressed by the surge of coronavirus cases. Florida reported 11,466 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday and 128 deaths of residents. It was the fourth day running the state saw more than 100 deaths.

The spike in cases is most acute in the Miami area. Miami-Dade County accounts for nearly a quarter of Florida's 327,241 cases.

On Friday, Miami-Dade County's daily "dashboard" report showed the number of patients admitted with COVID-19 at nearly 120% of intensive care unit capacity.

In Florida, an additional 10,181 people tested positive for the coronavirus Wednesday, bringing the state's total to more than 301,810 cases. Florida has averaged more than 10,000 cases a day for the past week, and some public health experts said the peak is still weeks away.

Updated at 5 p.m. ET

Florida posted its highest number of deaths yet from the coronavirus Tuesday. The state's Department of Health reported 132 deaths and 9,194 new positive cases.

It followed two days when Florida registered its highest number of new COVID-19 cases. On Sunday, Florida saw 15,300 cases, the most so far by any state.

Updated at 7:43 p.m. ET

Florida's surge of COVID-19 cases shows no signs of slowing down. The state Department of Heath reported Florida set another daily record Thursday, with 10,109 cases, surpassing Saturday's record of 9,585 cases. That brings Florida's total confirmed coronavirus cases to nearly 170,000 and a death toll of 3,617 (with 67 new deaths reported Thursday).

As it struggles to control a rising number of new cases of the coronavirus, Florida took a dramatic step, suspending the consumption of alcohol on the premises at bars statewide. Officials in Texas took a similar step Friday, requiring bars to close at noon and be available only for takeout and delivery. The order in Florida came as the state recorded another spike Friday.

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In California, Disneyland has announced its reopening will be postponed. It had been scheduled for July 17. But in Florida, Disney World is set to begin a phased reopening starting next month. From Miami, NPR's Greg Allen reports.

First in a series of reports looking at Joe Biden's potential running mates


Rep. Val Demings, D-Fla., has a rising national profile.

In Florida, where there's a surge of new COVID-19 cases, officials are divided over what to do about it. The state saw 2,783 new cases Tuesday. It was the third time in the past seven days that Florida set a new daily record.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and other Republican officials, including President Trump, say the rising number of new cases was expected and is mostly the result of increased testing. Florida is now testing more than 200,000 people a week, more than double the number tested weekly in mid-May.

Thirteen-foot-high floodwalls could line part of Miami's waterfront, under a proposed Army Corps of Engineers plan being developed to protect the area from storm surge. The $4.6 billion plan is one of several drafted by the Corps of Engineers to protect coastal areas in the U.S, which face increased flood risks stoked by climate change. Similar projects are already underway in Norfolk, VA and Charleston, SC.

Over the last week, Florida has seen rising numbers of new COVID-19 cases. Since last Tuesday, the number of people who tested positive for the coronavirus totaled more than 1,000 each day. Saturday's total of 1,426 positive tests was the most since early April.

A similar rise in new cases is happening in other states, including North Carolina, Texas and California. It's leading to worries that as businesses reopen and stay-at-home orders are lifted, relaxed guidelines could lead to new outbreaks and even a second wave of infections.

Several theme parks in Florida will open their doors to guests again over the next few weeks and have crafted plans they hope will keep employees and others safe from spread of the coronavirus.

SeaWorld received approval for its plan to reopen its parks on June 11. The plans are expected to be quickly approved by Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings and Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Universal Orlando has already received the go-ahead from local and state officials for its plan to reopen its parks on June 5.

It appears theme parks will soon be welcoming guests in Florida. Local officials approved reopening plans for Legoland in Winter Haven and the Universal theme parks in Orlando.

Update at 8:51 p.m. ET

A scientist who created a dashboard for monitoring Florida's rising number of COVID-19 cases said she's been fired for refusing to manipulate the data.

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Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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In the pantheon of great NFL coaches, Don Shula stands at the top. He had 347 career wins, more than any other coach in NFL history. Shula has died at the age of 90, according to his longtime team the Miami Dolphins.

In his 33 seasons as a head coach, first with the Baltimore Colts and then later with the Dolphins, Shula took his teams to six Super Bowls. With the Dolphins, Shula recorded the NFL's only perfect season ever.

Updated at 2 p.m. ET

Carnival Cruise Line says it's making plans to resume sailing Aug. 1. Carnival and all cruise lines have been banned from sailing from U.S. ports since March when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a No Sail Order. The order was later extended to July 24 or when "the Secretary of Health and Human Services' declares that COVID-19 no longer constitutes a public health emergency."

Congress is investigating Carnival Cruise Line for its response to the coronavirus pandemic. A House committee wants to know why Carnival didn't act sooner to protect the health of passengers and staff.

A federal judge in Miami has ordered U.S. immigration authorities to begin releasing detainees held at three facilities in South Florida.

In an order issued Thursday, U.S. District Judge Marcia Cooke said crowded conditions exposing detainees to the coronavirus violate their constitutional rights, including protections from "cruel and unusual punishment."

About 1,200 people are being held in the three detention centers in conditions that Cooke said places them at a heightened risk of contracting COVID-19.

Hurricane forecasters and the models they depend on failed to anticipate the strength and impact of last year's deadliest storm. Hurricane Dorian caused catastrophic damage to islands in the Northern Bahamas, killing more than 200 people and causing billions of dollars in damage.

The last cruise ship carrying passengers finally docked this week. On Tuesday, the Costa Deliziosa disembarked passengers in Genoa, Italy, allowing more than 1,500 people to return home after a 113-day voyage.

Under an order from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it will be another three months — at least — until cruise ships will once again be able to sail from U.S. ports. In the meantime, cruise lines are dealing with a host of lawsuits filed by passengers and crew who accuse the companies of negligence in exposing them to the coronavirus.

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Last night, as President Trump announced new federal guidelines on reopening the country, he said it's governors who will lead the way.

(SOUNDBITE OF ARCHIVED RECORDING)

Jacksonville, Fla., Mayor Lenny Curry announced Thursday that parks and beaches in Duval County would reopen Friday at 5 p.m. with certain restrictions. The mayor said restrictions would allow "essential activities" only, as defined in an executive order signed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. Those "essential activities" include walking, biking, hiking, fishing, running, swimming, taking care of pets and surfing, as long as they're done within social distancing guidelines. Sunbathing is still prohibited.

The structure of a compensation fund for victims of accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein now rests with the Superior Court of the Virgin Islands, where Epstein had a home.

U.S. Virgin Islands Attorney General Denise George went to court in January to block the executors of Epstein's estate from setting up a fund to compensate his alleged victims. Dozens of women have accused Epstein of sexually abusing them at his estates in Palm Beach, Fla., and in the Virgin Islands. Epstein owned two islands in the U.S. territory and lived in a lavish estate on one of them.

Updated at 6 p.m. ET

With an election year pandemic, mail-in ballots may become an increasingly popular way to vote, especially in states like Florida that allow any voter to use them.

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