Up To Date | KCUR

Up To Date

Weekdays at 11 a.m.

Up To Date focuses on pressing issues, both local and national, including politics, economics, planning and design, history and culture — topics that have an impact on the lives of the Greater Kansas City region.

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Coming up the week of February 17, 2019:

  • Monday: Mental Health Equity / Smart Money Experts: Making Career Moves
  • Tuesday: Sports Betting in Missouri / Jazz Vocalist Stacey Kent
  • Wednesday: How Missourians Will Access Medical Marijuana / "The Color of Law"
  • Thursday: Kansas City Mayor Lucas / "Things we Didn't Talk About When I was a Girl" / Weekend To-Do List
  • Friday: Former Shawnee Mission Teacher Calls It Quits / Indie Film Critics

Segment 1: Wyandotte advocates push for municipal IDs to mitigate problems faced by residents without photo identification.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Recent news about jails and prisons in Kansas and Missouri has highlighted horrible conditions for inmates, serious staff shortages and turnover, and lack of programs to ensure offenders reintegrate successfully into society.

Segment 1: Two men formed an unlikely friendship through a shared tragedy.

Tariq Khamisa was a 20-year-old college student delivering a pizza in 1995 when he was shot and killed by 14-year-old Tony Hicks. Azim Khamisa said he reached out to Ples Felix, the grandfather of his son's murderer, because he saw "victims at both ends of the gun." They became friends and work together in addressing gun violence through The Forgiveness Project.

Segment 1: Germany's prisons emphasize rehabilitation and resocialization for their inmates.

Germany is doing a lot of things differently than the U.S. when it comes to criminal justice, and they've got a lower inceration rate to show for it. In prisons there, staff are trained in things like psychology and communication, and they're paid just as much as police officers. This is all to promote a reintegration approach, which focuses on returning inmates back into their communities. 

Segment 1: Johnson County activists say there are signs to look for when detecting illicit sex trafficking businesses.

The business of sex trafficking often operates through a powerful underground network. This is why an Overland Park couple believies it's so hard to stop the practice. Mike and Pam Jensen pointed to one contributing factor, treating women who are trafficked as criminals rather than victims. They also outlined signs of illicit massage parlors which are well known as sources of human trafficking.

Segment 1: New poll data suggests Americans don't know much when it comes to gun-related deaths.  

The results of the latest survey by Guns and America asked people about the causes of gun deaths. Their answers show that more Americans believe it be “murders other than mass shootings" than the actual cause – suicide. Two reporters for the project broke down the survey results and what it means for gun policies in this country.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

Troy Schulte, one of the most influential city managers in recent Kansas City history, knows he may be remembered for helping oversee downtown’s revival, the streetcar, the convention hotel and a new airport terminal.

KansasMemory.org, Kansas Historical Society

Many people are well aware of the history of segregation of African American students in the Kansas City, Missouri, public schools, but there’s a compelling and mostly forgotten history of segregation of Mexican American children in the Kansas City, Kansas, public schools.

Immigrants came to the Kansas City area to pursue the American dream in railyards and meatpacking plants. They faced inequalities even as they fought for educational opportunities for their children from the 1920s to 1951.

Segment 1: Schulte talks of the progress and set-backs Kansas City faced during his term as city manager.

Troy Schulte's 10-year term as manager of Kansas City, Missouri, will in a few months come to a close. He said one of the hardest things about his job was finding a balance in handling pressing crises and working toward long-term goals. Schulte talked about things he's proud of, like the new airport terminal design, which is set to acheive net-zero carbon emissions. He also spoke of critical issues, like the overcrowding in city jails.

Segment 1: Research points to health dangers, but billions of pounds of Roundup are applied to plants each year.

Investigative journalist Carey Gillam has spent 20 years researching and reporting on the dangers of Monsanto's Roundup, and has seen the corporation attempt to discredit scientists and journalists. The product is increasingly popular, with global application increasing 16-fold since the 1990s. Gillam says, "it's not an understatement to say we're actually poisoning the planet."

Segment 1: Jackson County legislators answer questions of current budget, property tax and working with county executive Frank White.

Jackson County lawmakers say recent budgeting and property tax issues have caused county residents to distrust their local government. Legislator Jalen Anderson attributed the root of the problem to a lack of transparency and communication between the legislative and executive branches. "The time for talking is done. There needs to be change now," Anderson said. 

Segment 1: Once invisible, Native American women are making strides in having their issues heard. 

Eighty-four percent of Native American women will experience violence in their life, the most  of any population group. Professor and Muscogee Nation citizen Sarah Deer says facts like this are often missing from dialogues surrounding activism and feminism. Deer says if the focus in these conversations is placed on finding solutions for assaults on Native women, then those solutions will benefit everyone.

Segment 1: Clay County, Missouri, audit is stalled amid ongoing litigation.

Missouri Auditor Nicole Galloway launched an audit into Clay County last December, after more than 9,000 citizens requested it. Since then, the county has withheld documents needed to complete the audit, received a subpoena and sued the auditor's office. Sherry Duffett of the group Citizens for a Better Clay County points to Luann Ridgeway and Gene Owen, two of the county's three commissioners, as the reason the audit is at a standstill.

Jamie Hobbs / KCUR 89.3

No one can accuse University of Missouri President Mun Choi of lacking bold aspirations or high expectations for the newly launched NextGen Precision Health Initiative.

“It is the most important and the largest project in the history of the UM system,” he said recently on KCUR’s Up to Date. “This is going to be a game-changer when it comes to developing life-saving treatments.”

Segment 1: Three journalists based in Washington speak to the unique challenges of covering national politics up close.

Each day brings something exciting and newsworthy in Washington, D.C., whether it's an impeachment inquiry or a new health care policy. Three journalists spoke about navigating the political web of the Capitol, the "glorified stalking" of politicians for quotes, and the sheer enormity of working in the nation's hub for political decision-making. 

Kansas City Health Deparment

In the past, Kansas City officials had no authority to rectify health and safety problems in rental properties. But in August 2018, voters approved an initiative that allowed the health department to investigate complaints and to seek remedies.

In August of this year, the City Council expanded that authority to include federally subsidized Section 8 housing like the Englewood Apartments, as well as nonprofit rental housing.

Segment 1: Long-time NPR reporter talks national economics and highlights his experience covering the Obama and Trump administrations.

Scott Horsley made the transition to NPR's chief economics correspondent earlier this year. He provided a rundown of the House's current impeachment inquiry and explained its impact on the U.S. economy. Horsley also shared experiences from his previous post reporting from the White House for the past decade.

Segment 1: UM System President Mun Choi speaks to the impact of enrollment, funding and a new health initiative across campuses.

The University of Missouri System recently launched a new health initiative, which President Choi says is "the most important and the largest project in the history of the UM System." President Choi says university enrollment is steady right now, and that the Columbia campus has recovered from the tumult of 2015. He does note, however, that state funding this year is the same as it was 1998, even though there are 40% more students. 

Segment 1: Ned Yost's retirement announcement prompts discussion on the future of the Kansas City Royals.

Ned Yost is the winningest manager in Kansas City Royals history, and he led the team to its second-ever World Series win. But he also endured some tough losing periods. To some, his announcement comes as no surprise but many fans are now wondering: Who will be his replacement?

Seg. 1: Healthy Homes Initiative | Seg. 2: Indie Film Critics

Sep 23, 2019

Segment 1: Some are living in temporary housing after Kansas City's rental inspection program revealed deplorable conditions at a Northland apartment complex.

Landlords are under pressure to ensure healthy living conditions or face sanctions from the Kansas City Health Department. Currently, eight inspectors are reviewing approximately 1,100 complaints over rental properties in the city. 

Author releases her second novel featuring her teenage black female superhero.

L. L. McKinney's experience as a woman of color in the publishing industry has required patience and persistence, but it has resulted in two young adult novels. Both revolve around the heroine Alice, caught up in a Wonderland very different from the Lewis Carroll original. McKinney talked about the importance of representation in fantasy fiction and said, when it comes to writing for teens, "you have to come at them with respect, with understanding."

Jamie Hobbs / KCUR 89.3

Public defense attorneys are often overworked and underpaid, leaving them vulnerable to negative mental health consequences.

“I have a number of lawyers who will talk about their anxiety… waking up at night, or family issues,” says Ruth Petsch, who oversees the Kansas City public defenders office.

Each of the office's 35 attorneys is assigned 100 or more cases, and the pressure is steadily getting worse.

Segment 1: Heavy caseloads and long hours are taking a toll on Missouri's public defenders.

Officials say public defenders in Kansas City, Missouri, are sometimes handling more than 100 cases at a time, and staffing and workload situations have been dire for years. We speak with leaders of the public defender's office to find out how those pressures are affecting attorneys' mental health and the ability of clients to get a fair trial.

He brings us local news highlights with his primetime public affairs TV program each weekand his journalistic experience spans from the BBC to Kansas Public Radio. Nick Haines is rarely the one answering the questions, but today he shares an exclusive look at what makes KCPT's Kansas City Week in Review happen every Friday.

Segment 1: A Missouri man is free after spending 23 years behind bars for a crime he didn't commit.

With his newfound freedom, Ricky Kidd said he's excited to be a "responsible citizen and embrace the freedom that should have never been taken away from me in the first place." The Midwest Innocence Project attributes part of the failed system to an overworked public defenders office, and it's costing people like Kidd their lives.

Ever since the teams’ first meeting in Oakland, nearly 60 years ago, the rivalry between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Oakland Raiders has been considered one of the bitterest in the NFL. After this past Sunday it will never be quite the same. Commentator Victor Wishna explains why, in this month’s edition of 'A Fan’s Notes.'

On Sunday the Kansas City Chiefs made what is most likely their final trip to Oakland for one last dance in the dirt.

Can you land an airplane on the deck of a submarine? Can you build a swimming pool out of cheese? Can you lift a house with two helicopters glued together? These are the strange and hypothetical questions that inspire Randall Munroe, whose internet-famous comic series xkcd is known for its stick figure cast and impractical wit. Dig deep enough for answers, and you may just learn a lesson in science.

Luke X. Martin / KCUR 89.3

The results of global climate change are becoming readily apparent, and it’s affecting the younger generations inheriting a world of extreme weather.

Segment 1: Kansas City area officials adapting strategies for climate mitigation  

Since December 2018,  governments in the Kansas City region have been working to make their cities and counties climate resilient.  Two people behind the Metro KC Climate Action Coalition explained how everything from direct renewables agreements to LEED zero standard development are among the tools being used to meet that goal.

Segment 1: What Kansas City area organizations are doing to reduce gun violence 

In 2017, firearms killed nearly 40,000 people with 60% of those being suicides. Every year 1,500 children die from guns including those left unlocked in the home. This week in Kansas City, Missouri five persons died in a 24-hour period from gun-related incidents.  Three women deeply involved in these issues expressed frustration, desperation and determination about reducing gun violence. 

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