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Seg. 1: Public Defenders' Mental Health | Seg. 2: LaunchCode Kansas City

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.

Segment 2, beginning at 21:10: Coding converts are helping fill the need for tech workers.

Whether you got a weaving degree in college and are looking for a new professional direction, or maybe you just always had an interest in computers, coding could be the key to advancing your career. One nonprofit, rooted in Missouri, is helping folks in Kansas City make the jump.

  • John Woolbright, LaunchCode Kansas City candidate engagement manager
  • Bonnie Why, LaunchCode graduate and technology apprentice, VMLY&R
  • Sally Kramer, LaunchCode graduate and assistant administrator, Commerce Bank
When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
As culture editor, I oversee KCUR’s coverage of race, culture, the arts, food and sports. I work with reporters to make sure our stories reflect the fullest view of the place we call home, so listeners and readers feel primed to explore the places, projects and people who make up a vibrant Kansas City. Email me at luke@kcur.org.