Mississippi Edition

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7/27/20 - New Executive Orders | SWAC Suspends Football | Census Response Rate

The Governor introduces new restrictive measures to slow the growing rate of COVID transmission, and ease the strain on an overwhelmed hospital system.

Then, Mississippi's three public HBCUs will not be playing football this fall. We check in with their athletic department about the SWAC's decision to suspend fall sports.

Plus, the Census response rate in Mississippi is below the national average. We examine why it's important to get counted.

Segment 1:

Governor Tate Reeves is taking more restrictive measures to slow what has been the worst month of COVID-19 transmission since the pandemic reached Mississippi in mid-March. Last week, Reeves announced three new additions to existing measures, beginning with the addition of six new counties under his mask mandate. Reeves added Calhoun, Holmes, Lamar, Montgomery, Winston, and Yalabusha counties to the existing list of 23 under the current order. Reeves did not remove any counties from the existing list. Reeves also placed further state-wide restrictions on social gatherings. The third added measure by Reeves restricts operations in bars. Reeves says bars should look and work more like restaurants - with spaced seating - and cited the growing number of cases in 18 - 39 year olds as a motivating factor behind the order. Reeves hopes the measures will help reduce the strain on the state's hospital system.  

Segment 2:

After causing the cancellation of winter championships and spring seasons, the coronavirus pandemic is now threatening football and other fall sports. The Ivy League said earlier this month that it is canceling all fall sports, toppling the first in what appears to be a string of dominoes. This week, the SouthwesterN Athletic Conference announced it will suspend it's football and fall sports until the spring - making it the first major conference with ties to Mississippi to take such action. Mississippi's three public HBCU's - Jackson State University, Alcorn State University, and Mississippi Valley State University - are all members of the SWAC. Our Michael Guidry discusses with ASU's Derek Horne and JSU's Dennis Driscoll.

Segment 3:

The U.S. Census Bureau is continuing to count every person living in the country for the 2020 Census. But the self-report rates in Mississippi are falling below the national average - 57% in-state compared to 62% nationally. Response is even slower in the capital city, dropping to a 56% rate. Marilyn Stephens is an Assistant Regional Census Manager. She says census workers are back in the field to ensure those who have yet to self-report, get counted.

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9/18/2020

9/18/20 - Operation Pheonecia | AT&T Subpoenas | Student Leadership During COVID

A Mississippi U.S. Attorney announces a new campaign against domestic violence.Then, the Public Service Commission subpoenas telecom giant AT&T over questions regarding broadband expansion in the state.Plus, how student leaders at two of Mississippi's public universities are serving as liaisons between administration and the student body in the effort to keep campus safe during a pandemic.Segment 1:Families are staying home more during the coronavirus pandemic, and officials say this has led to a rise in domestic violence. In 2019, more than 10,000 calls were made to Mississippi law enforcement to report cases of domestic violence. U.S. Attorney of Mississippi's Southern District, Mike Hurst says domestic violence continues to be an area of concern that has risen during the coronavirus pandemic."Operation Pheonecia", which will work towards removing guns from the hands of abusers, is named after Pheonecia Ratliff of Canton, who was killed by her ex boyfriend after reporting him for domestic violence.Her mother, Suzanne Ratliff, offers advice to people facing domestic violence with our Kobee Vance.Segment 2:Major telecommunications conglomerate AT&T has agreed to provide the state of Mississippi records detailing how it used the almost $284 million it was paid by the federal government to expand internet access in the state. Public Service Commissioner Brandon Presley said AT&T initially denied requests last week for records related to work it completed in the state to provide fixed wireless service access through the Connect America Fund.Earlier this week he spoke with our Desare Frazier, saying his office is charged with ensuring the work is done.Segment 3:A close eye is being turned to college campuses this fall as students are resuming in-person learning.College students usually exhibit a level of independence and freedom often not reserved for their K-12 peers, which has led to concerns from health officials over the potential for widespread community transmission of COVID-19 on university campuses.They worry the social element of college life could lead to behaviors and practices that could cause outbreaks. To combat this, university administrators are leaning on student leadership to develop and communicate safety plans. We talk to Sarah Helen Skelton of Mississippi State and Joshua Mannery of the University of Mississippi.
9/17/2020

9/17/20 - Flu Fighters | MADD 40th | Book Club: Ted Jackson

A coalition of health professionals are sending a united message to Mississippians to fight the flu.Then, Mothers Against Drunk Driving turns 40.We look back with their national President and discuss new initiatives the group is pursuing.Plus, in today’s book club … A remarkable story that began thirty years ago in Ted Jackson’s new book, “You Ought to Do A Story About Me.”Segment 1:A coalition of doctors and associations called 'Flu Fighters' is uniting to urge Mississippians to get their flu shot.Flu season begins in October, but doctors say now is the time to get a flu shot. Dr. Mark Horne, President of the Mississippi State Medical Association, tells our Kobee Vance viruses like the flu or coronavirus lower immunity to other illnesses, which could lead to severe outcomes for patients.Experts say that wearing masks and social distancing will help reduce transmission of the flu, but the virus still poses a serious risk because of the coronavirus.Dr. John Gaudet is President of the Mississippi Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.He says young children and older adults are the most at risk for severe outcomes from the flu, and measures should be taken to avoid a "twindemic".Segment 2:Mothers Against Drunk Driving - more commonly known as MADD - is celebrating the 40th Anniversary of its founding.The organization has long-served to humanize the tragedies associated with impaired driving, and is releasing a new survey that measures the American public’s attitudes and knowledge about the impact of marijuana on traffic safety. According to the survey, one in eight U.S. adults admits to having driven under the influence of marijuana.President Helen Witty joins us to reflect on MADD's origins and how the group is facing the evolving issue of impaired driving.Segment 3:Ted Jackson has been a photojournalist with the New Orleans Times Picayune for the last 36 years.The Pulitzer Prize winner is a McComb native and alum of The University of Southern Mississippi.Thirty years ago he took a picture of a homeless man that led to a revelation, redemption and his new book, “You Ought to Do A Story About Me.”
9/16/2020

9/16/20 - Sally Comes Ashore | Jackson County EMA | Southern Remedy Health Minute | Mask Effectiveness

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