Odette Yousef | WBEZ
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Odette Yousef

Odette Yousef

Reporter

Odette Yousef is a WBEZ reporter covering immigration, race and class. 

Since joining the station in 2010, Odette has covered a range of stories including local and state efforts around immigration policy, DREAMers and the impact of travel bans on Muslim-Americans and refugees. She has also delved into the reality of homelessness in Chicago, with stories about tent cities and the disappearance of affordable housing on the North Side. In 2016, Odette was part of a team at WBEZ to win a National Edward R. Murrow Award for best Continuing Coverage of how local officials in Puerto Rico were sending drug addicts to unlicensed therapy groups in Chicago, with false promises of professional treatment.

Odette’s coverage includes enterprise and data reporting, and she has contributed to NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered, PRI’s The World and WNYC’s The Takeaway. In 2015, she served as president of the Chicago Headline Club, which is the largest chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.

Prior to joining WBEZ, Odette was a reporter at WABE FM in Atlanta.

Odette received a B.A. in Economics and East Asian Studies from Harvard University.

Recent Stories

Morning Shift

WBEZ’s Chicago And Illinois News Roundup: October 26, 2018

It’s Friday, and you know what that means: It’s time for Morning Shift’s Friday News Round-up. There was a ton of news this week, from Kanye’s support of mayoral candidate Amara Enyia, to the city’s response to a federal lawsuit involving the Obama Presidential Center. We’ll talk about those stories and much more, with our first all-WBEZ panel for the roundup. Morning Shift sits down with WBEZ state politics reporter Dave McKinney, WBEZ Race, Class and Communities reporter Natalie Moore and WBEZ Cook County politics reporter Kristen Schorsch.

Morning Shift

Charlene Carruthers Tackles Intersectionality, Social Justice Movements In New Book

Charlene Carruthers, outgoing national director of the Black Youth Project 100, talks about her new book.

Morning Shift Podcast

WBEZ’s Chicago And Illinois News Roundup: October 26, 2018

It’s Friday, and you know what that means: It’s time for Morning Shift’s Friday News Round-up. There was a ton of news this week, from Kanye’s support of mayoral candidate Amara Enyia, to the city’s response to a federal lawsuit involving the Obama Presidential Center. We’ll talk about those stories and much more, with our first all-WBEZ panel for the roundup. Morning Shift sits down with WBEZ state politics reporter Dave McKinney, WBEZ Race, Class and Communities reporter Natalie Moore and WBEZ Cook County politics reporter Kristen Schorsch.

Morning Shift

What A Massive Illegal Dump Says About How Chicago Works

“Six stories of rubble. A million stories buried underneath." That's the tagline for 'The City', a new investigative podcast from USA Today that seeks to tell true stories of how power operates in urban America.Season 1 focuses on a massive illegal dump that sprouted up in North Lawndale in the 1990s and why it took so long for that dump to be dismantled. It’s a story of politics, economic disinvestment and environmental racism in one Chicago neighborhood that sheds light on who gets what and who doesn’t in the Windy City. Morning Shift checks in with the creator and main voice of The City to talk about the project. GUEST: Robin Amer, host and executive producer of The City, an investigative podcast from USA Today LEARN MORE: The City Podcast: True Stories Of Power In Urban America (USA Today) Review: ‘The City’ Podcast Tells Sordid Tale Or Illegal Dumping On Chicago’s West Side (Chicago Tribune 9/22/18)How USA Today Uses AR To Promote A Podcast Series (MarTech Today 9/24/18)

Morning Shift

CoffeeCon Creator Talks Best Brewing Techniques

Is it possible to make the perfect cup of coffee? Kevin Sinnott, Creator of CoffeeCon and lover of all things caffeinated, stops by the 'Morning Shift' with his tips for home brewing.

WBEZ News

Eerie Calm In Chicago, But Storm Never Arrived

Downtown Chicago emptied Friday in anticipation of a verdict in the Jason Van Dyke trial, but demonstrations were mostly peaceful.

WBEZ News

‘Public Charge’ Proposal Sparks Fear

Advocates say they're seeing some immigrants turn in their LINK food assistance or Medicaid cards — out of fear.

WBEZ News

Percentage Without Health Insurance Grows In Metro Chicago And Illinois

New census data also shows that the Chicago region is getting older and more diverse.

WBEZ News

Chicago Raised Its Minimum Wage To Help Workers. Is It Working?

A new study concludes that the higher minimum wage has led to greater earnings and little job loss for some workers. But questions remain.

WBEZ News

Trapped: The Elevator Problem In Chicago’s Public Housing

Unsafe elevators and failed oversight result in tenants living in fear of their own buildings, a WBEZ/BGA investigation finds.

WBEZ News

Chicago’s System For Elevator Safety Is Failing At Public Housing

A citywide program to keep elevators safe is broken when it comes to the city's public housing, a WBEZ/BGA investigation reveals.

WBEZ Updates

Supporters Of Undocumented Army Veteran Claim Retaliation

Family and friends of an undocumented U.S. army veteran say detention and immigration officials are retaliating against him.

WBEZ Updates

Some Chicago Aldermen Say City ID Program Could Lead To Voter Fraud

Some Chicago aldermen are flagging a concern about the effects of the upcoming municipal ID program on elections.

WBEZ Updates

Before State Of The Union, Advocates Give Reminder Of How Immigration System Works

Ahead of tonight’s State of the Union address, immigrant advocates in Chicago are trying to make sure the public understands how the immigration system really works.

NPR

Activists: Gang Database Disproportionately Targets Young Men Of Color

Latino and immigrant groups in Chicago say that the electronic gang database is inaccurate, that there is no way for people to remove their names.

WBEZ Updates

Immigrant Advocates Decry Shutdown Deal

Immigrant advocates say they fear their cause is now more vulnerable, thanks to a federal funding deal in Washington.

WBEZ News

2 Dreamers Discuss Helping Other Immigrants Amid Uncertainty

Here are the stories of two Dreamers in Chicago who help immigrants even as they face losing their own status.

WBEZ News

Young Activists Of Color Say Chicago Police Reform Efforts Fall Short

A year after the DOJ said Chicago police victimize young people of color, activists have joined to push their own solutions.

WBEZ Updates

Carson Avoids Housing Advocates, Media In Chicago

The U.S. Secretary of Housing and Urban Development was in Chicago yesterday, but few got to see him.

WBEZ Updates

Homeless Couple Sues City Over Tent Seizures

A homeless couple is suing the city for repeatedly throwing away their tents and other belongings.

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