Mississippi Edition


Tuesday, February 14th, 2017

On today's show: The fight to establish a labor union at the Nissan plant in Canton is being reignited with an upcoming rally. Then, after a StoryCorp conversation from Mississippi, find out where free legal help is now available to Mississippians recovering from last month's devastating tornadoes.

More Episodes


10/21/20 - Federal Ruling on Rejected Ballots | State Fair Extended | Severe Weather Season

**This episode was produced during Fall Drive and is shorter to provide time on air for drive.Participate in our Fall Drive by visiting mpbonline.org**A federal ruling allows Mississippi voters to correct rejected absentee ballots.Then, at the urging of vendors, the commissioner of agriculture extends the state fair.Plus, since 1950 more strong tornados have occurred in November than any other month except May. We examine what causes Mississippi’s severe fall weather.Segment 1:A federal judge's ruling is instructing the Mississippi Secretary of State's office to allow voters the chance to correct rejected absentee ballots.The provision, which is a result of a federal lawsuit brought by voting rights organizations to expand absentee voting in the state, says ballots rejected due to signature problems will be eligible for correction.Christy Wheeler is with the League of Women Voters of Mississippi, one of the plaintiffs in the suit. She tells our Desare Frazier this ruling doesn't account for the missed opportunities to expand absentee voting.Segment 2:The Mississippi State Fair was scheduled to end Sunday. But after conversations with fair vendors, Commissioner of Agriculture and Commerce Andy Gipson is extending the event.The fair's first weekend was significantly affected by Hurricane Delta - shortening operating hours and driving attendance down.The coronavirus pandemic also presented challenges with capacity limits and social distance monitoring.Gipson tells our Kobee Vance he hopes the combination of favorable weather and eager vendors will make for a successful extended weekend.Segment 3:The forecast calls for sunny skies, but residents across the state will be hearing the sounds of tornado sirens this morning.The alarm is part of a statewide tornado drill happening in observance of Fall Severe Weather Preparedness Week.Since 1950, November has experienced more strong tornadoes than any other month besides May. Meteorologist John Moore is with the National Weather Service in Jackson.He says severe weather occurs when cooler air from the north overtakes warmer air masses in the south.

10/20/20 - New County Mask Mandates | MS Connects Devices go to Schools | Severe Weather Prep Week

**This episode was produced during Fall Drive and is shorter to provide time on air for drive.Participate in our Fall Drive by visiting mpbonline.org**The Governor issues tightened restrictions on targeted countries as coronavirus cases increase.Then, the CARES Act-funded Mississippi Connects program delivers devices to school districts.Plus, MEMA helps prepare residents for severe fall weather.Segment 1:Governor Tate Reeves is taking additional measures to slow the spread of COVID-19 following a weeks-long trend of growing cases and hospitalizations. A new executive order, issued today, introduces targeted measures in nine Mississippi counties. Reeves says the role of government interaction should be as limited as possible.Hospitalization rates are growing according to State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs.He also says there has been a shift in communities most recently affected by COVID-19. Dobbs says the testing and tracing elements are in place to fight continued mitigation, but indicates Mississippians are missing a vital piece.Segment 2:Computer devices by the thousands continue to make their way to Mississippi school districts for students and teachers across the state studying virtually because of the coronavirus pandemic.The devices are being distributed as a part of the CARES Act-funded Mississippi Connects program.We hear from John Kramen of the Mississippi Department, and our Desare Frazier speaks with Okolona Superintendent Chad Spence.Segment 3:This week is Fall Severe Weather Preparedness Week, and the Mississippi Management Agency wants residents to understand the various threats fall weather can bring to the state.Malary White is the External Affairs Director for MEMA.She tells our Michael Guidry, while Mississippians commonly associate tornadoes with the spring months of April and May, the fall months can bring their fair share of storms as well.

10/19/20 - COVID's Rising Trends | Uninsured Children | USA IBC Pushed Back

**This episode was produced during Fall Drive and is shorter to provide time on air for drive.Participate in our Fall Drive by visiting mpbonline.org**State health officials continue to signal the state is on the brink of another upward swing in coronavirus cases.Then, since 2016 the rate of uninsured children in Mississippi has increased by one of the largest rates in the country.We examine why.Plus, one of the world's premiere ballet competitions postpones its 2022 quadrennial event.Segment 1:Coronavirus transmission is spiking in Mississippi, and health officials are reporting cases are growing fastest in older generations. State Epidemiologist Dr. Paul Byers says while transmission rates are in nursing homes, the majority of the transmission is within communities or families.According to State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs, the state has the testing and tracing infrastructure in place to identify cases and stop the chain of transmission.But, he also says Mississippians are ignoring one key piece of the puzzle.Segment 2:A news study finds the number of children without health insurance in Mississippi is increasing at an alarming rate. Georgetown University Center for Children and Families estimates 46,000 children didn’t have health coverage last year--a number that’s risen 24 percent since 2016. Linda Dixon with the Mississippi Center for Justice tells our Desare Frazier it’s one of the largest jumps in the country.Segment 3:It's known as the Olympics of Ballet, and it calls Jackson, Mississippi home every four years.Since 1979, The USA International Ballet Competition has hosted hundreds of dancers from around the world, competing in the one of the most renowned events the dance world offers.But, due to complications caused by the coronavirus pandemic, sister competitions in Europe were canceled, and the scheduled 2022 competition in Jackson is being pushed back a year.Mona Nicholas, USA IBC's Executive Director, explains how the international dance community came together to solve a unique problem.