Maya Miller

Engagement Reporter

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Maya Miller is an engagement reporter at ProPublica working on community-sourced investigations. She’s collaborated across and beyond the newsroom on series about aggressive medical debt collection practices, housing and evictions, as well as toxic air pollution and health. The impact of her reporting includes a national doctors’ group announcing it would stop suing patients for medical debt, state legislators introducing a bill to repeal a criminal eviction statute, as well as federal lawmakers and officials promising investigations and reforms.

Her reporting within ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network, which has included working with residents to monitor air quality and crowdsourcing real-time reactions to air pollution, has contributed to several awards. These include a 2020 Selden Ring Award and Gerald Loeb Award (“Profiting from the Poor”), as well as a 2021 finalist for the Anthony Shadid Award for Journalism Ethics and the Gather Award in Engaged Journalism (“State of Denial”). Her work has appeared in NBC Investigations, Chicago magazine and the Chicago Tribune, among others. She lives in New York and speaks Spanish.

A Plant That Sterilizes Medical Equipment Spews Cancer-Causing Pollution on Tens of Thousands of Schoolchildren

Nobody told Yaneli Ortiz’s family that the factory they lived near emitted ethylene oxide. Not when the EPA found it causes cancer. Not when she was diagnosed with leukemia. And not when Texas moved to allow polluters to emit more of the chemical.

When Home Is a Toxic Hot Spot

More than a thousand people talked to ProPublica about living in hot spots for cancer-causing air pollution. Most never got a warning from the EPA. They are rallying neighbors, packing civic meetings and signing petitions for reform.

Veneno en el aire

La EPA permite a los contaminadores que conviertan barrios en “zonas de sacrificio” donde los residentes respiran carcinógenos. ProPublica revela dónde están esos lugares en un mapa, el primero de este tipo, y con análisis de datos.

¿Puede la contaminación del aire causar cáncer? Lo que usted tiene que saber sobre los riesgos.

Si usted vive cerca de ciertas instalaciones industriales, puede tener un riesgo estimado de cáncer más alto. Aquí hay respuestas a preguntas comunes, datos producto de una colaboración participativa y cómo compartir su experiencia.

¿Vive usted cerca de una instalación industrial? Ayúdenos a investigar la contaminación.

Las instalaciones industriales emiten químicos en el aire que elevan el riesgo de cáncer en los barrios de los alrededores. Si usted vive o trabaja cerca de un foco afectado, nos gustaría comunicarnos con usted.

Poison in the Air

The EPA allows polluters to turn neighborhoods into “sacrifice zones” where residents breathe carcinogens. ProPublica reveals where these places are in a first-of-its-kind map and data analysis.

Do You Live Near an Industrial Facility? Help Us Investigate.

Industrial facilities release toxic air pollution that can elevate estimated cancer risk for surrounding neighborhoods. If you live in or work near a hot spot, we’d like to hear from you.

Can Air Pollution Cause Cancer? What You Need to Know About the Risks.

If you live close to certain industrial facilities, you may have a higher estimated cancer risk. This may sound alarming. Here are answers to common questions, some crowdsourced tips and how to share your experience to help our investigation.

We Reported on Pollution From Sugar Cane Burning. Now Federal Lawmakers Want the EPA to Take Action.

Citing a Palm Beach Post/ProPublica report on the burning of cane fields, leading members of Congress have called for the EPA to investigate air monitoring in Florida and to change national pollution standards.

Tell Us About Your Experience With Life-Sustaining Medical Devices

Do you or someone you know have a pacemaker, defibrillator, implanted prosthetic, or other lifesaving device? Do you work with or in the medical device industry? Help us report.

Hay humo todos los años. Las compañías azucareras dicen que el aire es saludable.

Para cosechar más de la mitad de la caña de azúcar de Estados Unidos, empresas multimillonarias prenden fuego a los cañaverales, una práctica para ahorrar dinero que está prohibida por otros países. Algunos residentes dicen que les cuesta respirar, así que comenzamos a estudiar la calidad del aire.

The Smoke Comes Every Year. Sugar Companies Say the Air Is Safe.

To harvest more than half of America’s cane sugar, billion-dollar companies set fire to fields, a money-saving practice that’s being banned by other countries. Some residents say they struggle to breathe, so we started tracking air quality.

Sugar Companies Said Our Investigation Is Flawed and Biased. Let’s Dive Into Why That’s Not the Case.

ProPublica and The Palm Beach Post published an investigation into the air quality in Florida’s heartland, where more than half the country’s cane sugar is harvested, often by burning the fields. Sugar companies challenged our reporting. We respond.

There’s Only One State Where Falling Behind on Rent Could Mean Jail Time. That Could Change.

Only Arkansas permits criminal consequences for nonpayment of rent — and it has enforced the law during the pandemic. Now, after ProPublica investigated the practice, some legislators want to revoke the statute.

A Deputy Prosecutor Was Fired for Speaking Out Against Jail Time for People Who Fall Behind on Rent

Arkansas prosecutor Josh Drake called the state’s criminal eviction statute “cruel” and “unconstitutional.” Criminal charges against tenants falling behind on rent have continued, even as the pandemic has worsened.

When Falling Behind on Rent Leads to Jail Time

Evictions in Arkansas can snowball from criminal charges to arrests to jail time because of a 119-year-old law that mostly impacts female, Black and low-income renters. Even prosecutors have called it unconstitutional.

Arkansas: My Landlord Is Trying to Kick Me Out. What Can I Do?

If you live in Arkansas and are worried about being evicted, you’re not alone. Our reporting revealed thousands have been forced into the confusing legal process during the pandemic. Here’s how it works — and what you can do.

Community Storytelling Is Informing Our Coverage of Intellectual and Developmental Disability Services. Share Your Story.

Journalists have not always brought people with intellectual and developmental disabilities into the conversation. We’re trying to change that with our investigation into Arizona’s disability services. But we need your help.

She Needed Lifesaving Medication, but the Only Hospital in Town Did Not Have It

Mabel Garcia went to the only emergency room in Texas County, Oklahoma, which didn’t have a drug for heart attacks and strokes. She was airlifted to a larger hospital that gave her the drug she needed, but it was too late. She suffered brain damage.

What’s Your Experience With Intellectual and Developmental Disability Care in Arizona?

The Arizona Daily Star and ProPublica are investigating services for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Here's how people with disabilities, their families, friends, caregivers, teachers and medical providers can help.

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