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NCPR News Staff: Natasha Haverty

Reporter and Producer

Natasha Haverty has an English degree from Brown University and got her radio training at the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in Maine.

From Maine she went to work at The Moth, a nonprofit in New York City devoted to the art of live storytelling, where she was the coordinator of the community outreach program that teaches workshops to schools and community centers and brings storytellers to the Moth stage (and the radio). She also helped produce the first two seasons of Peabody Award-winning Moth Radio Hour (now playing on NPR stations across the country).

Tasha returned to her home state after receiving the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities’ “Liberty and Justice for All” grant to create an oral history of the Norfolk Prison Debating Society, which had an outstanding record against top college teams in the Forties and Fifties. She recently premiered her original 'improvised audio drama' The Yankee City Series at a live listening event at Harvard University. Tasha arrived in the North Country on April Fool's Day, 2012. E-mail

Stories filed by Natasha Haverty

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The village of Dannemora, NY and Clinton-Dannemora prison, one of the facilities that remains open here in the North Country. Photo: Natasha Haverty
The village of Dannemora, NY and Clinton-Dannemora prison, one of the facilities that remains open here in the North Country. Photo: Natasha Haverty

Cuomo cuts corrections budget, closes prisons

Cuomo still plans to close four prisons later this year, including two here in the North Country. In his speech yesterday the Governor also spoke about putting more resources into programs to help offenders return to society and stay in society.

This comes only a few weeks after Cuomo talked about rolling back the "madness" of mass incarceration in New York. The new budget reduces funding for the Department of Corrections by $8 million.  Go to full article
View from a subway platform in Bedford-Stuyvesant, one of the neighborhoods in New York city with the highest concentration of men and women admitted to prison. Photo: Natasha Haverty
View from a subway platform in Bedford-Stuyvesant, one of the neighborhoods in New York city with the highest concentration of men and women admitted to prison. Photo: Natasha Haverty

Cuomo: "reducing the madness of an incarceration society"

Cuomo also talked about the state of prisons in New York yesterday. And according to the Governor, there's good news, and there's bad news.  Go to full article
Nighttime in Algonquin Park. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/64894594@N08/7046599793">abuakel</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Nighttime in Algonquin Park. Photo: abuakel, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Listen: Wolf howl sound check

You just heard a public wolf howl at Algonquin Provincial Park in Ontario. But that event can only take place if park naturalists actually hear wolves the night before, during what they call a "sound check."

So on the night before the "public howl", teams of naturalists spread through the park, scouting the area and keeping in touch by handheld radio. It was past ten in the evening. The August night was clear and still, and the sky dripped with meteors. That's today's Heard Up North.  Go to full article
Algonquin Park Wolves. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/jdbsound/3968088234/">JDB Photos</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Algonquin Park Wolves. Photo: JDB Photos, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Howling for wolves

During the holidays we're listening back to some of our favorite stories from 2013. This morning we go back to late summer, and up to Algonquin Provincial Park, where for the past fifty years, people from all around the world have made the journey to hear wolves howl. The Eastern Timber Wolf lived across the eastern United States before humans virtually erased it from the landscape. But in some parts of Canada, the Eastern Wolf is alive and well. Reporter Natasha Haverty sent this postcard.

(Note: While August is the best time to hear wolves at the park, the rangers told us that now is the best time to see them, when the trees are bare and the contrast in the landscape is stronger.)  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/timpeartrice/3244993795/">Tanya Impeartrice</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: Tanya Impeartrice, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

St. Lawrence Cty back on its feet after the ice storm, but challenges remain

Power is back for almost all of St. Lawrence County. National Grid is reporting about 500 people still without power this morning. But the ice storm hit the area south of Governeur-- towns like Pitcairn, Fowler, and Hermon the hardest. And Emergency Services Interim Director Keith Zimmerman says it's the last one or two hundred outages that are the most challenging to fix.  Go to full article
The Adirondack Express heading towards Penn Station. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/96536917@N00/8542793641/">P. Romaine</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved.
The Adirondack Express heading towards Penn Station. Photo: P. Romaine, Creative Commons, some rights reserved.

Listen: Goodbye, hometown

It's travel time for a lot of people this week. But one family from the north country recently made a bigger journey than most--all the way to sunny California, and they did the whole trip by train. And they had a one way ticket, the family was making a new start on the west coast. Their mother was feeling shy, but the two brothers met reporter Natasha Haverty in the train's dining car. The 8-year-old Adam, and 15-year-old Julian, who was traveling with his guitar around his neck, are today's Heard Up North.  Go to full article
Prison hospital gate. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/atbaker/2948498050/">Adam Baker</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Prison hospital gate. Photo: Adam Baker, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

In final days, inmates care for inmates

Yesterday as part our Prison Time Media Project we heard the story of an inmate at Coxsackie prison, who fought to get home after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

It's a growing issue for America's huge prison system, as more inmates than ever are aging and dying behind bars.

Here in New York, hundreds of sick and dying inmates navigate the compassionate release system every year, but very few actually make it out of prison.

And for those inmates who die behind bars, prison officials offer them hospice care. As Natasha Haverty reports, those men and women are supported and comforted in their final days by fellow inmates.  Go to full article

Dying inmates in NY struggle to get home

This year, North Country Public Radio has been looking in-depth at the growth of the prison industry here in our region, across New York and around the country.

Over the last four decades, we've seen the number of men and women behind bars soar--many serving long mandatory sentences for low-level crimes.

And one side-effect of those tough-on-crime policies today is that the number of elderly inmates is surging--growing by almost eighty percent from 2000 through 2009.

Prison officials across the US are struggling to sort out what that means, how we think about and care for inmates who grow old and die in our prisons.

In part one of our investigative report, Natasha Haverty found that despite recent reforms to the system, many terminally ill inmates are forced to remain behind bars even when they no longer appear to be a threat to society. Even some prison officials think the process for allowing inmates to die at home needs fixing.  Go to full article
Samuel Jones, the first man to hold the office of New York State Comptroller, when it was created in 1797. Photo: Project Gutenberg
Samuel Jones, the first man to hold the office of New York State Comptroller, when it was created in 1797. Photo: Project Gutenberg

How do you say Comptroller?

A few days ago, reporter Natasha Haverty spoke with Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli about New York State's Office of Unclaimed Funds. But she also asked DiNapoli to help resolve an internal struggle here at the station.  Go to full article
Phillip Milano accepts a check for $533.78 from Comptroller DiNapoli (far right), who was joined by David Valesky, at the New York State Fair. Photo: New York State Comptroller's Office
Phillip Milano accepts a check for $533.78 from Comptroller DiNapoli (far right), who was joined by David Valesky, at the New York State Fair. Photo: New York State Comptroller's Office

Could some of this $12.5 billion belong to you?

New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli says the state may have money for you and it's waiting at a place called "The Office of Unclaimed Funds." New York State currently holds 12 and a half billion dollars in unclaimed funds; 31 million dollars belong the North Country.  Go to full article

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