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Health and homelessness

 September 28, 2022 at 5:00 AM PDT

Good Morning, I’m Debbie Cruz….it’s Wednesday, September 28th>>>>

The county declares homelessness a public health emergency…More on that next. But first... let’s do the headlines….######

A former San Diego County sheriff’s deputy who admitted to on-the-job misconduct with 16 women —---- is heading back to jail.

This comes after an appeals court ruled Monday that Richard Fischer has to serve 956 more days in jail.

That’s according to reporting from the san diego union tribune.

Fischer was previously credited for serving nearly a thousand days on house arrest.

But during that time he was allowed to leave his home and thus not actually on house arrest.

Fischer previously served 5 months in jail.

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A plan is in the works to make housing more affordable for middle income San Diegans.

Yesterday (Tuesday) the Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a proposal to entice builders to construct affordable housing.

The plan would also create low interest loans… restricted to those making between 80 and 120-percent of the average median income.

That’s about 82 thousand five hundred dollars in san diego right now.

County staff will bring a proposal back to the board for a vote in six months.

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An excessive heat warning for San Diego County’s deserts is in effect until 8 tonight.

Forecasters are predicting temperatures between 100 and 106 degrees.

Less severe heat advisories remain in place until 8 tonight for FOR the county’s COASTAL and valley AREAS.

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From KPBS, you’re listening to San Diego News Now.Stay with me for more of the local news you need.

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The San Diego County Board of Supervisors has voted yesterday (Tuesday) to declare homelessness a public health emergency.

While the move won’t release additional funds to address homelessness, the declaration will allow the county to focus resources on the numerous health issues plaguing the community.

KPBS's Jade Hindmon asked PATH regional director Hanan (Huh-NON) Scrapper about how not addressing healthcare needs perpetuates the cycle of homelessness.

HOMELESSCRISIS.     3:56      "...public health risks for everyone."

TAG: That was Hanan (Huh-NON) Scrapper with PATH speaking with KPBS Midday Edition host Jade Hindmon.

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Over the last few weeks, public comment during supervisors meetings has seen more and more residents calling on elected officials to end the COVID-19 local state of emergency.

Many of those going before decision-makers say that the threat of the virus is no longer there, instead falsely using data from the county on loss of life to argue that the vaccine is unsafe and ineffective.

inewsource reporter Danielle Dawson spoke to experts about the impact of misinformation at this point in the pandemic.

COVIDCDC 1 (inews)              0:57         SOQ

"DAWSON: In recent weeks, renewed claims about the COVID vaccine have gained traction on social media using county-reported death data to argue the shot does not work. An inewsource analysis of this data found that this rhetoric is untrue: Vaccinated individuals account for about 80 percent of the county’s population, so when adjusted for the differing population sizes unvaccinated individuals have seen death rates that are four times higher this year than those who are vaccinated.

DAWSON: With shifts nationwide away from government intervention to prevent further spread of COVID, this kind of misleading information is that much more dangerous, as Dr Corrine McDaniels-Davidson with San Diego State University explains, given that the onus of mitigation now rests with the individual and incorrect information encourages riskier health behaviors.

MCDANIELS-DAVIDSON: I don’t think people can be proactive about their own health unless they fully understand the scope of the problem.

DAWSON: Studies show the vaccine remains to be the most effective way at limiting the likelihood for severe illness with COVID-19. For KPBS, I’m inewsource reporter Danielle Dawson."

TAG: inewsource is an independently funded, nonprofit partner of KPBS.

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The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals blocked California’s ban on private immigration detention centers Monday. Advocates tell KPBS border reporter Gustavo Solis they are unhappy with the decision.

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Rios 00:00:21:11

“Disappointed. I’m disappointed that the court of appeals made a decision that essentially negates what Californians want, which is shutting down private corporations that profit from detaining human beings.”

Pedro Rios is an advocate with the American Friends Service Committee. He has protested in front of private detention centers throughout the state. Rios says the court’s decision will continue to endanger detained migrants.

Rios 00:01:21:10

“They’re poorly regulated, and there has been so much harm, people have died and unfortunately that will continue under this new ruling.”

Governor Gavin Newsom signed the private prison ban into law in 2019. It was the first such ban in the country.

But it was quickly challenged in court by the Trump Administration. Advocates are particularly frustrated by the Biden administration’s continuation of Trump’s lawsuit. lawsuit.

Jehan Laner is a staff attorney at the Immigrant Legal Resource Center. She points out that Biden had promised to end private prisons during his 2020 presidential campaign.

Jehan 00:04:21:10

“They campaigned on shutting down all private detention and they really did raise a lot of money off of comparing themselves to the Trump administration and the anti-immigrant rhetoric coming from the Trump campaign.  So a lot of folks on the immigrant rights movement are feeling betrayed.

The court ruled that California’s ban on private detention centers violated the U.S. Constitution. Specifically, the judge says that the state ban in effect prevents U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement from using detention facilities in the state.

Judges determined that the Constitution bars California from exerting this level of control over the federal government’s detention operations.

Laner disagrees.

Jehan 00:02:12:11

“The court ended up saying that it’s unconstitutional because its directly controlling the federal government, which I would argue is recasting what AB 32 actually does. It doesn’t direct the federal government to do anything. The federal government can still detain people her in California if it wishes to. It just can’t use these private for-profit detention centers in California.”

Gustavo Solis, KPBS News

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Coming up.... An underwater DDT dumpsite … We’ll have that story and more, next, just after the break.

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San Diego scientists are taking a closer look at a massive underwater DDT dumpsite in the deep ocean waters between Catalina Island and Los Angeles. KPBS Environment Reporter Erik Anderson has details.

DDT 1 (sea)                        soq                  :48

Researchers hope to learn just how dangerous the underwater habitat is near a notorious dump site in the San Pedro Basin.  Some 27-thousand deteriorating barrels are located there on the ocean floor. Scripps Institution of Oceanography researcher Lihini Aluwihare hopes to develop fingerprints of the chemical contamination so it can be traced.  

DDT 1A                             :14

LA 00:11:50 – 00:12:04 “And the idea is can we sort of show this making its way through the food web that’s at the deep basin, into the food web that we’re more familiar with where we might catch fish or the dolphins or seals might be accessing.”

Scientists used underwater drones to map more than 36-thousand acres of the sea floor. The area became a chemical dumping ground in the 1930s.   Shipping records from a disposal company say two-thousand barrels of DDT laced sludge were dumped there every month for 15 years.  

Erik Anderson KPBS News

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Democrats hold a slim 9-seat majority in the House of Representatives. And San Diego Congressman Scott Peters is one Democrat who says they’ve got a pretty good chance of holding onto it.

Midterm elections for the party in power tend to go badly.

But Peters told KPBS last year’s January 6th riot and – especially – the Supreme Court's Dobbs ruling, which eliminated the right to abortion have fueled Democrats’ momentum.

He calls the Republican party the party of Trump.

PETERSELECTION 1A  (:16)

“Whether you’re motivated by January 6th or whether you’re motivated by this incredibly barbaric Dobbs ruling, people are going to come out and you see that in registration. So I’m much more optimistic. I don’t know if we’re going to be able to close the gap completely, but if the Republicans win it won’t be by much.”

In the November election, Peters faces Republican Corey Gustafson in the 52th Congressional district, which will be redrawn and renamed the 50th District next year.

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That’s it for the podcast today. As always you can find more San Diego news online at KPBS dot org. I’m Debbie Cruz. Thanks for listening and have a great day.

Declaring homelessness a public health emergency in San Diego County allows the county to focus resources on the health issues plaguing those who are unhoused. Then, the possible impact of misinformation at this point in the COVID-19 pandemic. And, San Diego scientists are taking a closer look at a massive underwater DDT dumpsite in the deep ocean waters between Catalina Island and Los Angeles.