Weekly News Round-Up, Two-Day Weekend Edition
A few stories that have caught my attention over the last week:
Unlike many people, the larger workplace does not have MLK Day tomorrow as a holiday. I’m going to two lectures at work, though – the first is from Robert L. Satcher, Jr., physician and astronaut, on “Fulfilling the Dream: Minorities in Biosciences.” The second will be Julian Bond, civil rights activist, on “The Road to Freedom: From Alabama to Obama.” The Julian Bond talk is free and open to the public but tickets are required; on Friday the Sarratt box office still had tickets.
The CDC released their first report on health disparities and inequalities. It provides data on a number of issues and disparities, including exposure to air pollution, health insurance coverage, infant deaths, inadequate and unhealthy housing, preterm births, homicide, and many others.
This NPR bit on buildings and building standards in Haiti (as related to earthquakes and their damage) has a striking line in it from a seismologist working in the region: “poverty and corruption kill [because they undercut construction standards, he says. People cheat.]” It’s such a clear example of the truth of that statement, I felt the need to mark it.
Relatedly, MADRE has released a new report on sexual violence in camps in Haiti one year after the country’s devastating earthquake.
The 2011 standards of medical care for diabetes from the American Diabetes Association came out this month in the journal Diabetes Care.
A Canadian publication brought attention to the practice of pelvic exams done on anesthetized women without their knowledge or consent. Here in the U.S., there was some controversy over this practice a few years back, resulting in some institutions changing their practices, but it still happens and I’m mulling over whether it would be possible to get state and/or federal laws passed banning the practice outright.
Report: Drug-Sniffing Dogs Are Wrong More Often Than Right. In short, in Chicago, dogs were way over-alerting their handlers, and at least one expert thinks it might be because of the behavior of those handlers. According to the story:
…officers found drugs or paraphernalia in only 44 percent of cases in which the dogs had alerted them. When the driver was Latino, the dogs were right just just 27 percent of the time.
The obvious concerns here about racial profiling and unjustified searches are discussed in the full article from the Chicago Tribune.
The American College of Nurse-Midwives is holding their annual video contest, and is accepting video submissions supporting midwifery or on becoming a midwife through March 31.
This piece describes some of the barriers to safety and freedom faced by immigrant women who are abused and are in the U.S. without legal documentation.
Jodi Jacobson at RH Reality Check writes about The Pregnancy Police and Citizens’ Arrests of Pregnant and Nursing Women. In Tennessee, a woman who abused cocaine during her pregnancy, and whose infant was found to have cocaine its system, is being charged with aggravated child abuse.
Pam at Pam’s House Blend has links to info and commentary on the gruesome story of videos sent to the LAPD which depict men sexually assaulting several disabled women.
Angry Asian Man has a nice round-up of posts by Asian authors with critical responses to the “tiger mother/Chinese mother” thing. Amy Chua herself has claimed that the WSJ misrepresented her work in the controversial parenting article.
Jill at Feministe points to a story of an Idaho pharmacist who refused to fill a prescription written by a Planned Parenthood nurse practitioner unless the NP would disclose whether the drug was needed for abortion-related follow-up care.
The sixth annual Blog for Choice day is coming up this Friday, January 21. The theme for this year is: Given the anti-choice gains in the states and Congress, are you concerned about choice in 2011?