Ashlee Lynn Deon

October 10, 2007

Far too often police and paramedics race to the scenes of drunk driving accidents, often because the drivers got behind the wheel without realizing just how intoxicated they actually were.

But after 30 years in the alcohol and drug addiction industry, Thomas W. Cox, executive director of Amethyst House, has a tool he thinks could give the emergency responders some relief.

Last month, in honor of National Alcohol and Drug Abuse Recovery month, he announced the organization's newest tool in the struggle -- alcohol and drug tests that work using saliva.

August 12, 2007

A mountain of flip-flops, sandals and sneakers builds quickly at the entrance of the Islamic Center of Bloomington. Men and women alike rush inside, whispering excited greetings throughout a room where no one seems a stranger.

And where no one looks alike. Inside the mosque, a flood of people as diverse as the pile of shoes -- Asians, blacks, Egyptians, whites, Saudi Arabians -- cluster around the man about to lead the Friday prayer.

Despite the tiny summer student population, about 60 Muslims stand barefoot in rows on a massive rug, women grouped together in the back and men in the front.

With a single nod from the leader, silence sweeps the room.

June 20, 2007

Bloomington's abuzz about more than parking this summer.

The IU Summer Music Festival kicked off June 17, showcasing once again the phenomenal musical skill that floods this landlocked city through the Jacobs School of Music.

Running through Aug. 4, this 30-event festival blends the sounds of summer with the flair of students, faculty, conductors and internationally renowned alumni alike.

Hosted by the music school, this annual event will satisfy the pickiest music connoisseur's hunger with a combination of diverse performances, from orchestral concert bands to solo artists to opera theater productions.

May 23, 2007

After 14 years as coordinator of employment services at Stone Belt Arc, Joyce Resler's duties have been consistent. She still works daily to pair clients with careers that match their abilities, interests and strengths.

But she's also seen plenty of change at the local nonprofit advocacy organization for citizens with disabilities. And she has recently noticed a big one.

In the past, the jobs she found for clients were typically entry-level.

"When I first started, it seemed like most with special needs were in janitorial, cleaning, housekeeping, food-service-type jobs," Resler said.

But she has noticed an overall rise in the willingness of employers to hire employees with disabilities for more advanced, complicated positions.

"I'm seeing so many people advance and do different things," she said. "Employers are becoming more comfortable with hiring those with disabilities, especially with our program."

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