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2 hard-hit cities, 2 diverging fates in vaccine rollout

By PHILIP MARCELO Associated Press CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. (AP) — Mario Valdez, his wife and their 18-year-old son were fully vaccinated for COVID-19 this month as part of a special effort to inoculate every resident of Central Falls, the Rhode Island community hit hardest by the pandemic. "I feel happy," the 62-year-old school bus driver said shortly after receiving his second and final dose. "Too many people here have COVID. It's better to be safe." Roughly 50 miles (80 kilometers) across the state line in Chelsea, a Massachusetts city that was an early epicenter of the virus, high school sophomore...

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Biden directive expands jobless aid to more unemployed

By CHRISTOPHER RUGABER AP Economics Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — Unemployed Americans who have turned down job offers because they feared their prospective employers weren't providing sufficient protection from the coronavirus would qualify for jobless aid under a directive the Labor Department issued Thursday. The measure would also expand a federal unemployment-benefits...

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