JC Canicosa

JC Canicosa

JC Canicosa is a former Louisiana Illuminator reporter. Prior to working with the Illuminator, Canicosa worked for Investigate-TV and The Loyola Maroon. Canicosa earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Loyola University New Orleans. At Loyola, he was the senior staff writer at The Maroon and the president of the school's chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. Off the clock, Canicosa enjoys playing basketball, watching movies and dabbling in comedy writing.

Louisiana cut its homeless numbers during the pandemic; they’re back up again

By: - September 13, 2022

Vauchel Cojoe, a former cab driver in Uptown New Orleans, found herself living under an overpass for several months of the COVID-19 pandemic. “It was overwhelming for me,” Cojoe said. “My mental health was kicked in… I’d be depressed a lot.” Cojoe was considered an essential worker during the pandemic, but an injury from an […]

LGBTQ community in Louisiana wants more support than they had growing up

By: - June 30, 2022

For Steven Knight, growing up Black, queer and Christian in Shreveport meant facing resistance toward who he was from conflicting parts of his community. His church told him gay people are going to go to hell. Black culture told him “being gay is a white thing,” he said. The media’s representation of masculinity in his […]

LSU handles alcohol, drug violations only with arrests, unlike other Louisiana universities

By: - June 29, 2022

From 2018 through 2020, when LSU students were caught illegally drinking alcohol or taking drugs, the university involved the police 100% of the time. It makes LSU an outlier among Louisiana colleges and universities, where discipline is also handled internally. Federal law requires universities to report any incident involving the illegal use of alcohol or […]

Baton Rouge residents speak out against Louisiana abortion ban

By: - June 24, 2022

Ten years ago, Jennifer McMorris, a Louisiana resident from Mobile, Alabama, was pressured by her boyfriend at the time to drink until she blacked out. “I just remember passing out and waking up in the morning and thinking, ‘Why am I naked?’” she said. “Six weeks later, after he had been deployed, I was pregnant […]

Aerial view of Louisiana State Capitol building

Despite push from conservatives, veto session unlikely according to House leadership

By: and - June 23, 2022

While the Louisiana Conservative Caucus is pushing for a veto override session, Republicans who lead the House of Representatives don’t think it’s likely.  The caucus put out a statement Thursday on Facebook calling for a veto override session. The group, made up of 42 of the most vocal Republicans in the House, targeted their ire […]

Empty desks face the chalkboard in a classroom

Louisiana sees massive increases in education, literacy funding

By: - June 7, 2022

Louisiana schools will see large increases in funding for literacy, early education programs and public universities, as its Legislature directed money from excess federal COVID-19 relief packages toward education. “We know that we have too many kids who by the second grade are not reading at grade level … and we don’t do a very […]

Louisiana drivers can still hold cell phones while driving

By: - June 6, 2022

Louisiana drivers will still be allowed to hold their cellphone while driving for now. An effort to change state law to require hands-free use of phones behind the wheel failed in the Legislature  House Bill 376 from Rep. Mike Huval, R-Breaux Bridge, would have prohibited drivers from “holding or physically supporting a wireless telecommunications device […]

several stacks of books

State money will follow students reading below grade level

By: - June 6, 2022

Louisiana could soon give parents and guardians of students struggling to read the option to pull them out of public school and provide them money for private school or homeschooling. Money for the subsidies would come out of the state budget. Sen. Sharon Hewitt’s Senate Bill 203, creating the Reading Education Savings Account program, passed […]

A Department of Health and Human Services employee holds a COVID-19 vaccine record card

Louisiana schools that require COVID vaccine could soon face lawsuits

By: - June 6, 2022

Public schools and government agencies that require COVID-19 vaccinations could face lawsuits from anyone barred entry for failing to comply, according to a proposal the Louisiana Legislature approved Monday. House Bill 54, authored by Rep. Larry Bagley, R-Stonewall, passed the House and Senate after multiple rounds of amendments. Bagley, a retired educator, chairs the House […]

Aerial view of Louisiana State Capitol building

Louisiana Legislature agrees to get rid of Confederate state holidays

By: - June 5, 2022

Robert E. Lee Day and Confederate Memorial Day haven’t been celebrated in Louisiana in decades, but they still exist on the state’s calendar of official holidays. That will change after House Bill 248, authored by Rep. Matthew Willard, received Senate approval. It removes Robert E. Lee Day and Confederate Memorial Day from the state’s legal […]

A physician writes on a clipboard next to a pregnant woman with her hands on her midsection.

Louisiana Legislature creates Office of Women’s Health

By: - June 5, 2022

An effort to address health disparities among women in Louisiana was pulled into the debate over whether transgender people should be granted access to medical care. Senate Bill 116, by Sen. Regina Barrow, D-Baton Rouge, creates an Office of Women’s Health within the Louisiana Department of Health. It would be “responsible for leading and coordinating […]

A tree branch partial obscures the LSU Library

TOPS recipients could soon keep family income private

By: - June 5, 2022

Louisiana might soon remove the requirement that recipients of the state’s popular merit-based college scholarship provide information on their family income. The proposal to keep income private in the Taylor Opportunity Program for Students (TOPS) was included in Senate Bill 81, authored by Sen. Bodi White, R-Baton Rouge. It passed unanimously in the Louisiana House […]