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5 things to know for March 28: Ukraine, Covid, Capitol riot, NYC homeless, Oscars

By AJ Willingham, CNN

About 150 law enforcement agencies in the US and Canada have taken the 30×30 Pledge, making the commitment to increase the representation of women in their ranks to 30% by 2030. Currently, women make up just 12% of sworn law enforcement positions in the US. Here’s what you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.

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1. Ukraine

Ukraine is entering a new round of peace talks with Russia this week, and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says he will accept a neutral, non-nuclear status for his country in order to reach an agreement. However, he said any decision would be put to a vote among the Ukrainian people, and the country’s sovereignty is not in question. Russian missile strikes continued to pummel Ukraine over the weekend, including more around the city of Mariupol, which Russia wants to capture because of its strategic port. Ukraine’s military intelligence head says Russia’s assault on the capital city of Kyiv has failed, and instead of capturing the government, Russian President Vladimir Putin could now be aiming to cleave Ukraine in two — like North and South Korea. Follow CNN’s full coverage of Russia’s attack on Ukraine here.

2. Coronavirus

The FDA is expected to greenlight additional Covid-19 booster shots for adults over the age of 50 as early as next week. Once that happens, the CDC will likely make a “permissive recommendation,” which means the additional shots won’t be officially recommended, but will be available to those who want them. Booster shots have already been recommended for adults who are severely immune deficient, and some health experts have pointed out many other adults are already getting a fourth shot even though they haven’t been officially designated for that use. Meanwhile, Shanghai is trying to slow a massive surge of Covid-19 infections by shutting down in two halves for mass testing among the city’s 25 million residents.

3. Capitol riot

The House select committee investigating the January 6 insurrection has filed contempt reports for former Trump White House aides Dan Scavino and Peter Navarro for failing to comply with their subpoenas. The committee is also set to vote today on a criminal referral for both men. Scavino is one of former President Donald Trump’s closest and most loyal allies, and was actively involved in Trump’s social media accounts. The committee has pointed to news reports that Scavino also monitored and engaged with an online forum that openly called for violence in the weeks leading up to the insurrection. For his part, Navarro has been very public about his attempts to work with the Trump campaign to subvert the 2020 election. The committee has advanced three previous criminal referrals for Trump allies who have dodged subpoenas, including one for Trump adviser Steve Bannon that led to an indictment.

4. NYC homeless encampments

New York City is undergoing a two-week plan to clear out homeless encampments around the city and connect unhoused people to social services. City officials say this phase focuses on about 150 specific encampments, and areas will be reinspected and recanvassed in following phases. People involved in the multi-agency effort visited encampments last Friday, giving people there a 24-hour notice to clear out the sites. About 650 such encounters are now being made every night, officials said. In the first week of the plan, 22 people expressed willingness to enter a shelter. Homeless advocates have denounced the plan, saying it fundamentally misunderstands the situations faced by unsheltered New Yorkers. One advocate said the process is “tired and cruel,” and chases people out of the city rather than providing them a place to live safely. New York Mayor Eric Adams maintains makeshift housing is dangerous, and shelters are far safer.

5. Oscars

Last night’s Academy Awards ceremony was a night of firsts — and fists. “CODA” won the award for best picture, marking a seminal moment for disability representation. (CODA is an acronym for Children of Deaf Adults, and the film follows the only hearing member of a deaf family.) One of the film’s stars, Troy Kotsur, became the first deaf performer to win an Academy Award in the best supporting actor category. The success of “CODA,” which was distributed by Apple TV+, is also a breakthrough for streaming services. For years, films distributed by streaming powerhouses like Netflix have not been seen as worthy competitors to major studio releases. More history was made when Ariana DeBose won best actress in a supporting role for “West Side Story,” making her the first openly queer woman of color to win in the category. And yet, the most talked-about moment of the night was something else altogether. During the broadcast, Will Smith confronted and appeared to strike presenter Chris Rock after Rock made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. The encounter sent social media into a frenzy, and Smith apologized for the incident a short time later when he accepted his award for best actor. Here’s the full list of winners from last night.


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That’s how many homicides were reported in El Salvador this Saturday alone. The country has proclaimed a state of emergency to tackle a rising homicide rate spiked by gang violence.


“I will always be appreciative for you championing our community as in your parting words … ‘Drummers stick together!'”

Lars Ulrich, Metallica co-founder and drummer, recalling his last conversation with Taylor Hawkins. Ulrich and scores of other rock royalty paid tribute to the Foo Fighters drummer, who passed away over the weekend at the age of 50.


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If these two vociferous kookaburras were your wake-up call, you’d never oversleep. Ever. (Click here to view)

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