News

Erin Hennessey / KPLU

Every time a cop goes out on a call, chances are good that the encounter will be with someone suffering from mental illness. It’s the reason the Seattle Police Department has trained officers in crisis intervention and teamed them up with mental health professionals.

John Taylor via Creative Commons / Flickr

What’s known as “conversion therapy” — designed to turn gay kids 
straight — is legal in most states, including Washington. U.S. Senator Patty Murray is calling for a nationwide ban on the practice.

Kyle Stokes / KPLU

Early returns show voters in Seattle and in other parts of Western Washington are saying yes to school levies that would help pay for everything from basic supplies to teacher salaries and new buildings.

 

The two levies for the Seattle school district add up to more than $1 billion. Both are both passing by healthy margins.

 

Ashley Gross / KPLU

Boeing Commercial Airplanes Chief Executive Ray Conner told employees during a webcast that the company will cut an undisclosed number of jobs as a way to reduce costs. 

"We will start reducing employment levels with executives and managers first," the company said in a statement. "We will also use attrition and voluntary layoffs. As a last resort, involuntary layoffs may be necessary."

Elaine Thompson / AP

Seattle was the first big city to adopt a $15 minimum wage law, and now there’s new research on how that’s affected the prices we pay at stores and restaurants.

University of Washington researchers are doing a multi-year study to analyze economic impacts of the wage hike. They started tracking consumer prices last March, right before the first wage hike to $11 an hour.

Ed Ronco / KPLU

Though he's now a proud Washingtonian, KPLU's Ed Ronco is a Michigander by birth, and every year at this time, he goes looking for a particular Polish pastry traditionally sold in southeast Michigan on Fat Tuesday. 

Today is Fat Tuesday. Mardi Gras. Or, if you’re from where I grew up, in metro Detroit, today is Pączki Day.

Elaine Thompson / AP

 

When you go to a doctor or hospital that is part of your insurance plan, you can sometimes get hit with bills requiring you to pay the full amount.

 

Erin Hennessey / KPLU

Join us on February 18 for our first Save KPLU community meeting which is being held at Tacoma's Court House Square from 7:00 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.

This is great opportunity to meet other listeners who want help Save KPLU raise money to become an independent community licensee.

Elaine Thompson / AP

Ask any parent about their biggest challenge — it’s all about the logistics. How to get Suzy to ballet when Johnny has soccer? And your teenager won’t be caught dead in the car you’re driving. But there’s a tempting solution.

Moms of even very young kids find themselves joking about it, but some parents of older kids are actually doing it. They’re relying on rideshare companies — like Uber — to get their kids home from that party Friday night.

BASF / Flickr

On Wednesday, Tacoma residents will get another chance to weigh in on a plan for what could become the world’s biggest methanol plant. A lot of people have raised concerns about potential safety hazards posed by methanol itself and the process of refining it from natural gas.

Tim Coleman

 

 

Jazz Northwest, Sunday, February 7 at 2 p.m. Pacific on 88.5 KPLU, simultaneous streaming at kplu.org .  

 

The quartet of musical friends reassembled on the stage of Poncho Theatre at Cornish on Capitol Hill and played mostly compositions by pianist Art Lande and guitarist Dave Peterson.  

 

Ross Huggett via Creative Commons / Flickr

This week's episode of "Sound Effect" contains adult language that may not be suitable for all audiences.

  "Sound Effect" is your weekly tour of ideas, inspired by the place we live. The show is hosted by KPLU's Gabriel Spitzer. For this episode, the Sound Effect staff brings us stories of going solo.

Sarah Brandabur

Sarah Brandabur was no stranger to hiking. Before heading out, she would read up on the trails, check the weather conditions, and have a pretty solid idea of what she was getting herself into.

Last October, her plans for a hike to Ingalls Lake in central Washington was similarly prepared for. It was supposed to be a day hike.  The weather was beautiful, and she brought a friend along to make the trek with her.

After her friend wasn't able to continue shortly after starting the hike, Sarah decided to go the rest of the way solo.

Ariel Van Cleave / KPLU

A ridge of high pressure is heading in our direction and that will mean warmer weather and sunny skies. KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass says it'll feel "spring-like." But we will have to contend with some rain and snow for just a bit longer.

"And it'll be pretty heavy tonight. Some good, heavy showers. In the mountains, as the front moves through in the evening and on Saturday morning, we'll see snow developing," he says.

Parker Miles Blohm / KPLU

Pink Martini founder/pianist Thomas Lauderdale described the band this way: “If the United Nations had a house band in 1962, hopefully we’d be that band.”  

Fair enough, but after their visit to the KPLU studios for a live performance and interview with our All Things Considered host Ed Ronco, we feel strongly that they should be the house band for the planet from this day forward.  Their music is pan-global; their hearts are pure, and they make you want to dance.  So, why not?  Enjoy.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

The Mariners begin spring training two weeks from now in Arizona. KPLU sports commentator Art Thiel says fans can expect a lot of changes this season.

Note: Each month, KPLU invites a teen guest DJ to play his or her favorite pieces on the air.  The program is part of KPLU's School of Jazz.  

Blake Clawson and Matthew Tweten from Anacortes High School are the Student DJs for the month of February.  Blake and Matthew's hour aired from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. on February 4th.

To get to know them better we asked Blake and Matthew to answer a few questions about jazz:

As of today, you’ve helped us raise $1.1 million! This is HUGE -- thanks for your support of an independent voice for news, information and jazz & blues. With your help, we are well on our way to purchase KPLU from Pacific Lutheran University. And if you haven’t pledged yet, please visit the Save KPLU page and show your support

Some big updates today:

Tina Fineberg / AP

Pregnancy-related deaths in the U.S. have been on the rise over the past 30 years. Lawmakers in Washington state are concerned that maternal deaths have gone unchecked in recent years. In Washington, the rate of women dying is 12 moms for every 100,000 live births.

Experts say up to 60 percent of those deaths are preventable. For that reason, state legislators want to reinstate a review panel of doctors to take a closer look at each case.

Elaine Thompson / AP

In the wake of last week’s shooting in Seattle that killed two people and injured three, officials from state and local agencies are trying to gain a better understanding of where the crime happened.

Jason Mrachina / Flickr

Groundhog Day was this week and, in Pennsylvania, Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow. Legend says that means an early spring. Whether or not Phil’s prediction is accurate, KPLU travel expert Matthew Brumley is thinking about spring break.

The lead-up to a vacation can be stressful, Brumley said.

N. Leson

When Nancy Leson told me the kind of seeds she'd sprinkled on the challah she baked, I immediately dropped a dime on her to the Bread Police.  Wounded she asked, "Was that really necessary, Stein?" But the simple fact is she left me no choice. 

Fennel seeds on challah, indeed!  Everyone knows the only legit topping is poppy seeds.  But fennel? And orange juice?  And orange zest.  Hmmm...actually sounds kind of good...

Bellamy Pailthorp / KPLU News

There are some people who see a problem and find a solution. That’s true of one student at Seattle Pacific University who transformed her feelings about what she was observing into action. Now, her school is all set to become the first private college in Washington state to feed the homeless by recovering leftover meals, rather than letting them go to the compost bin.

21-year-old Maya Swinehart says sometimes seeing people without shelter causes her to do things many other people don’t.

 

There are more than 35,000 public school students who are homeless in Washington state. That’s according to the state Office of Public Instruction.

fastestlabs.com

It’s typical for someone found guilty of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol to be required to submit to random drug tests as a condition of their probation. But a Port Hadlock, Washington woman convicted of a misdemeanor says such a requirement violates her right to privacy.

 

Under a new agreement, Seattle’s Harborview Medical Center clearly lays out its commitment to serve the poor.  Staff from the University of Washington will continue to provide care.

 

Elaine Thompson / AP

Police have arrested three teenagers in connection with the shooting at a Seattle homeless encampment last week that left 2 people dead and three others wounded.

Seattle police say the suspects, ages 13, 16 and 17, were arrested Monday afternoon in Seattle. No further information about the arrests was immediately available.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

 

From the Methow Valley to Seattle and everywhere in between, school districts will be going directly to voters on February 9 to ask them to say “yes” to higher taxes so that schools can keep paying for teachers' salaries, supplies and so that new buildings can be constructed to ease overcrowding.

 

The 13th Annual PDX Jazz Festival takes place in Portland, OR, February 18-28 with a special focus on the music and associations of John Coltrane, who would have been 90 years old in 2016.  

Gabriel Spitzer sits down with KPLU’s General Manager Joey Cohn for an update on where KPLU stands with fundraising, but not before discovering that Joey's long broadcast career includes a stint as a "VJ" for a local MTV-wannabe TV station in Arizona. While that station is long-gone and probably little-mourned, Cohn and Spitzer talk about how KPLU is a unique asset to our community and is worth saving.

 

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