Carl Lewis, owner of Carl’s Cafe in Rankin, touchs a leafy grape plant growing on the side of his store.

Fresh produce and bagged meals: Four Pittsburghers share how the pandemic has impacted their approach to food security

Before the pandemic, more than one in five Pittsburgh residents were food insecure. That means social and economic conditions limit their consistent access to food. After the pandemic hit, residents lost jobs and distribution methods like school lunches were disrupted. While residents from all communities seek aid from food banks and pantries, food insecurity disproportionately impacts low-income communities of color.

How worried should Allegheny County residents be about the Delta variant?

The Delta variant is a strain of COVID-19 that was first detected in India, where it quickly became the dominant strain. It has been identified in 85 countries and is spreading rapidly among unvaccinated populations. Between May 8 and June 5, the Delta variant jumped from representing 1.3% of new cases in the United States to 10%. It now accounts for more than half of all new COVID-19 cases nationwide. Not only is this strain more contagious, doctors are reporting that it causes more severe illness and a faster onset of serious symptoms.

Overall COVID cases in Allegheny County remain low, largely showing the success of vaccination efforts.