Anna Gustafson

Anna Gustafson

Anna Gustafson is the assistant editor at Michigan Advance, where her beats include economic justice, health care and immigration. Previously the founder of the Muskegon Times and the editor at Rapid Growth Media in Grand Rapids, Anna has worked as an editor and reporter for news outlets across the country.

Meet the volunteers who have been passing out bottled water in Benton Harbor since 2018

By: - October 27, 2021

By the time Carolina Gray began directing traffic at the bottled water distribution in Benton Harbor earlier this month, the line of cars stretched before her was long. Wearing a blue shirt emblazoned with the words “Clean water is a human right,” Gray ushered those waiting into the parking lot outside God’s Household of Faith […]

In Benton Harbor’s water crisis, a long history of systemic racism — and a chance for justice

By: - October 26, 2021

Every day, Elnora Gavin wakes up terrified that her young son will use the tap water in their Benton Harbor home to brush his teeth when she’s not looking.  She thinks of the horror stories emanating from children drinking lead infused water in Flint — which, like Benton Harbor, is a predominantly Black city that […]

Michigan reports 7,505 new COVID-19 cases, 118 deaths since Wednesday

By: - October 22, 2021

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) reported Friday that a total of 1,104,634 Michiganders have tested positive for COVID-19 and 21,862 have died from the virus — an additional 7,505 cases and 118 deaths since Wednesday. The new numbers combine Thursday and Friday’s recorded cases and deaths, with an average of 3,752 […]

Michigan SOS candidate Kristina Karamo to speak at QAnon conference

By: - October 21, 2021

Kristina Karamo, a 2022 Republican Michigan secretary of state candidate endorsed by former President Donald Trump, is set to speak at an upcoming QAnon conference billed as the “Great Awakening Weekend” in Las Vegas. Scheduled from Friday until Monday, the “For God & Country: Patriot Double Down” event is being organized by John Sabal, known […]

Pregnant people in prison have been shackled while giving birth. Whitmer plans to change that.

By: - October 20, 2021

When Siwatu-Salama Ra received the news yesterday that Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced a policy directive meant to overhaul the way pregnant people in prison are treated, she was in the hospital watching her 3-year-old son struggle to breathe. “He’s being so strong in the hospital now, and I remember him as a baby who, at […]

Berrien Co. health officials resign, citing ‘politicization of public health’ during pandemic

By: - October 19, 2021

Two Berrien County Health Department officials announced Monday they are resigning, saying the politicization of the pandemic has made it impossible for them to do their jobs. Acting Health Officer Courtney Davis and Communications Manager Gillian Conrad will leave the health department in Southwest Michigan on Nov. 3 and Oct. 29, respectively.  “I make this […]

Michigan’s new top doctor had to consider violence against health officials before taking job

By: - October 19, 2021

When Dr. Natasha Bagdasarian was considering accepting an interim position as Michigan’s chief medical executive, the stream of public health officials who have faced a barrage of vitriolic criticism and threats over COVID-19 health mandates weighed heavily on her mind. “Before taking this role, that was one of my considerations,” Bagdasarian said in a Friday […]

Michigan’s pediatric COVID cases are on the rise

By: - October 15, 2021

COVID cases and hospitalizations continue to climb in Michigan.  State health officials reported Wednesday that the case rate rose to 304.4 cases per million people. About 4.9% of emergency department visits were for COVID diagnoses over the past week, an increase over last week’s 4.1%. Case rates are highest among 10- to 19-year-olds; there are […]

‘There’s no safe level of lead exposure’

By: - October 14, 2021

When TaNiccia Henry’s grandson, Lloyd, was 4 years old, his “feet turned dark and his hair stopped growing.” Henry, who lives in Detroit and is Lloyd’s primary caregiver, brought her grandson to be tested for lead. When the test came back, the numbers were staggering: Lloyd had a blood level of 28 micrograms per deciliter […]

With a new health equity project, Michigan doctors aren’t just writing prescriptions

By: - October 14, 2021

By the time a patient is referred to the Greater Flint Health Coalition, a doctor or another health care professional has identified there’s something more than just their physical health that’s endangering the person’s health. It may be they don’t regularly have access to transportation to get to their medical appointments, or there’s not enough […]

‘Very scary for us’: Advocates worry Whitmer won’t veto bills privatizing mental health care

By: - October 7, 2021

Two years ago, Republican lawmakers inserted a provision into the state budget that would have, in part, privatized Michigan’s public mental health system.  Immediately, mental health providers and advocates called on Gov. Gretchen Whitmer to veto the provision, saying it would cause sweeping damage to the care being provided to approximately 300,000 low-income Michiganders with […]

Conservative activist who ‘invented’ clash over ‘critical race theory’ leads Senate hearing

By: - October 5, 2021

A conservative activist from Washington described as someone who “invented the conflict over critical race theory” was at Tuesday’s state Senate Education and Career Readiness Committee hearing supporting a bill banning Michigan schools from teaching a decades-old theory examining systemic racism. Christopher Rufo, who the New Yorker wrote “invented” the arguments over “critical race theory,” […]