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Morning Brief: Shelter In Long Beach, The Oscars, And Marshmallow-Roasting Penguins

Stock: City Life South Los Angeles LA7.jpg
(Chava Sanchez
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Good morning, L.A. It’s April 26.

Last Thursday, migrant children began arriving at the Long Beach Convention Center for temporary housing, where they will wait to be reunited with family members or placed with sponsors.

The children, who are undocumented, were previously being held at the U.S.-Mexico border. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will operate the center in Long Beach, and the federal government will foot the bill.

Plans to turn the building into shelter were put in place in early April after a unanimous vote by the Long Beach City Council, in response to a request by the federal government for assistance with the large influx of unaccompanied minors at the border.

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As of Sunday, the center had welcomed nearly 100 children. The building can house up to 1,000, and Long Beach officials expect that several hundred children will arrive every few days in the coming weeks. The children are expected to stay in the facility an average of seven to 10 days.

Officials and volunteers have worked to make the center as welcoming as possible, adding color and pictures to the walls, and providing stuffed animals and toys.

“In a perfect world, we wouldn’t have these types of shelters, these kids would be with their families,” said Long Beach Mayor Robert Garcia. “We want to get them feeling safe, comfortable, and then reunited with their family.”

The city has also organized a toy and book drive, and has opened a volunteer portal for locals who want to help.

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today, and stay safe out there.

What Else You Need To Know Today

  • John Horn, host of the LAist podcast, Hollywood, the Sequel, breaks down last night’s Academy Awards.
  • Kristy Drutman, creator of the podcast Brown Girl Green, says climate activists of color are frequently ignored and left out of the conversation.
  • Experts say the best way to teach climate justice to kids is to show, rather than tell.
  • Megan K. Reilly, who’s been a top financial officer at LAUSD for 12 of the past 14 years, has been selected to temporarily succeed Austin Beutner as superintendent.
  • L.A. County health officials are ready to quickly resume use of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine.

Before You Go … What Marshmallow-Roasting Penguins Can Teach Us About The Climate Crisis

The front cover of the book The Trouble With Penguins. A small boy with a white hooded coat holding a marshmallow roasting stick and a penguin share surprised faces.
(Courtesy Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan Children's Publishing Group)

Seven years ago, L.A. artist and aspiring author Rebecca Jordan-Glum had an idea for a children’s book about penguins with a penchant for roasting marshmallows — and the unintended consequences that follow.

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In the story, a small child in a cozy coat shares a few fireside marshmallows with a penguin who waddles off to promote the new snack to its pals. The sugar-pumped penguins soon start “fire, after fire, after fire, after fire, after fire, after fire, after fire” until their Antarctic home splits apart.

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