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Roman Catholic Diocese of San Diego filing for bankruptcy

 June 17, 2024 at 5:00 AM PDT

Good Morning, I’m Debbie Cruz….it’s Monday, June 17th.


The Roman Catholic Diocese of San Diego is filing for bankruptcy today (Monday).More on that next. But first... let’s do the headlines….


Children and teens across the city of San Diego can get free meals during summer break.

The San Diego Unified School District and the city's libraries, parks and other community centers will become meal and nutrition hubs.

The sites will offer free breakfast and lunch to children and teens.

All children are eligible and there are no registration requirements or forms to complete.

To find the list of summer meal locations and hours, visit san-diego-unified-dot-org-slash-food.

The program runs through August second.


The first official day of summer may be on Thursday, but the weather is going to feel like the season has already started.

The National Weather Service says temperatures are expected to increase little by little each day.

Today (Monday) in the inland and mountain areas, temps will be in the mid 70s, and in the deserts, it’ll be in the 100s.

By the coast, there’s a beach hazards statement in effect until 7 tonight, where there will be increased rip current activity.

Forecasters say to always swim near a lifeguard and know your swimming limits.. And when in doubt, don't go out!

The weather by the coast will be sunny, but temps will be in the mid 60s.


All public county offices, public health clinics, family resource centers, libraries and animal shelters will be closed Wednesday for Juneteenth.

But most county parks, campgrounds and neighborhood day-use parks will be open.

Essential services, including law enforcement and emergency animal control response, will be available through the holiday.

All county offices will resume normal business hours on Thursday.


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


The Roman Catholic Diocese of San Diego is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection today (Monday), in the wake of hundreds of legal claims from alleged sexual abuse victims.

Reporter Alexander Nguyen has more on why the diocese is declaring bankruptcy.

17 years ago … the San Diego Diocese paid nearly 200 million dollars to settle sexual abuse claims from nearly 150 survivors. In 2019 … A-B 2-18 extended the statute of limitation on child sexual assault cases. Since then … more than 450 cases have been filed against the diocese. Diocese spokesperson Kevin Eckeray says bankruptcy is the only way for the Diocese to ensure that all survivors are justly compensated. If we were to deal with these cases sequentially and without, the, the bankruptcy helping to take care of it, it's entirely possible that all the resources might be exhausted after dealing with 10 or 28 cases. The court-appointed liaison counsel for the survivors … Irwin Zalkin … says this is a strategy for the diocese to pay lower settlement claims. Irwin Zalkin Liaison Counsel for Survivors they can get a discharge of not just these claims, but future claims.” The current claims could cost the diocese more than 5-hundred-50 million dollars. AN/KPBS.


The latest county Respiratory Virus Surveillance report shows a slight increase in covid-19 cases.

Health reporter Heidi De Marco looked into whether there is a need for concern.

As temperatures climb, there is also a slight increase in COVID rates. The San Diego County Department of Public Health reported 454 COVID cases for the week ending June 8. That’s up 111 cases from the previous week. Researchers say the FLIRT variant is responsible for this small summer wave. UC San Diego Health infectious disease doctor Francesca Torriani says the covid cases she’s seeing resemble a cold. But she has some concerns for older patients. So that's a population that clearly has, there is a relationship between age and severity of disease. And so that should be the population, we target for vaccination. She says it’s important to continue protective measures this summer, including mask-wearing and getting vaccine boosters. Heidi de Marco, KPBS News. 


More families are being reunited with remains of relatives who died in long-ago wars.

Advances in anthropology and D-N-A technology have allowed the Army to identify about 200 sets of remains each year - dating back to World War 2.

But the passage of time has complicated the process of finding families to accept the remains.

Jay Price reports for the American Homefront Project.

PRICE: This month, Staff Sgt. Robert J. Ferris Jr. came home. He was a 20-year-old turret gunner in a B-17 bomber shot down in World War II.His remains were retrieved from a cemetery in France and identified last fall.That’s when a phone call came to Barbara Weiss of New Bern, North Carolina. WEISS: I think it was a process of elimination because they started with my grandparents you know, and went down the line every and everybody they thought of has passed. PRICE: She’s sitting beside the casket just after the graveside service, holding in her lap the flag that had draped it.Weiss is Ferris’s niece... born years after he died. When she got the call, the Army mortuary affairs specialist first asked if her grandparents were still alive. WEISS: Then the next one would be an aunt, and then they were asking about my uncle Al, he was gone. Then they asked, do you know, Burtress…. And I said that’s my mother, can we talk to her and I said she's passed, too. … And I said I'm the only one. I'm the next of kin… PRICE: That's typical now that the remains the military is finding and identifying mostly date to World War II… there’s no immediate family to be designated the official next of kin. COX: Probably about 60 to 70 percent we’re dealing with now never knew the soldier. PRICE: William “Shorty” Cox is a senior mortuary affairs specialist for the Army, one of four who contacts families when a long-missing soldier is identified. In 14 years at the job, he’s seen a shift away from Vietnam War cases, as the number of recoverable remains from that war have dwindled to perhaps a few hundred. Meanwhile tens of thousands are possible from earlier conflicts. And for those, most immediate family are already gone. Usually, a distant family member is willing to stand in as the next of kin. It helps that the military covers all the costs. But sometimes relatives are so far removed they don’t want to bother. COX: I've got a case right where I've gone through sixteen family members, and I can't get a single one of them willing to take up the mantle to bury the soldier. … They don't know ‘em, they're busy. And I'm on my last family member now. PRICE: And if THAT one says no, the ARMY has to act as next of kin, and decide things like the burial site. Such cases were once rare, but Cox’s team has three others in process right now. George Washington University professor Sarah Wagner is the author of “What Remains: Bringing America’s Missing Home from the Vietnam War”She says even if no immediate family is alive… there's still merit in accounting for the missing. It shows current service members that the country values them. And it means something to those who attend the memorials, like one she went to at Arlington National Cemetery, where no one knew the deceased. WAGNER: There wasn't a dry eye from what I could tell and people felt incredibly moved and … but there is a sense of pageantry right here is the 21-volley salute. Here's the folded up American flag handed over, you … become part of something and you can trace a lineage to a moment of sacrifice. PRICE: At Ferris’s burial, Weiss, the fallen soldier’s neice cheerfully stepped INTO her unexpected role … and helped organize things like a funeral home display of faded photos. WEISS: I did not know him. But now I do know him. My grandmother was such a loving person, and so was my aunt and my other uncle. So he has to be a part of that. PRICE: And so NOW this is how we remember long-missing troops when they return. As part of everyone’s family somehow. I'm Jay Price reporting.

TAG: This story was produced by the American Homefront Project, a public media collaboration that reports on American military life and veterans.


A Normal Heights nonprofit is helping students turn recycled objects into art – and giving San Diegans a chance to donate and buy second hand supplies.

Reporter Katie Anastas stopped by Art Form’s summer camp, and has this report.

It’s the last day of Art FORM’s first week-long art camp of the summer. The materials they use at the camp – from beads and buttons to paint and pastels – are all secondhand. Erin Pennell founded Art FORM more than a decade ago. She says the goal is to make arts education more accessible and eco-friendly. ERIN PENNELL, CREATIVE PROGRAM DIRECTOR, ART FORM The impetus was to start an art studio where kids could come on field trips and feel really at home, and feel like they had a safe, open space with an abundance of materials and a process that they might find that works for them. Art FORM accepts donations from individuals and businesses. Some get used at summer camps and elementary school classes during the school year, and others are sold at Art FORM’s store down Adams Avenue. The store’s inventory of donated fabric, yarn, paper and other supplies is always changing. Proceeds from the store help fund classes and community outreach. Pennell says they’ve diverted 20 tons of reusable materials so far this year. Katie Anastas, KPBS News.


That’s it for the podcast today. As always you can find more San Diego news online at KPBS dot org. Join us again tomorrow for the day’s top stories. I’m Debbie Cruz. I’ll be off the next few days, and our very own podcast producer Emilyn Mohebbi will be filling in for me. Thanks for listening and have a great Monday.

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The Roman Catholic Diocese of San Diego is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Monday, in the wake of hundreds of legal claims from alleged sexual abuse victims. In other news, the latest San Diego County Respiratory Virus Surveillance report shows a slight increase in COVID-19 cases. We find out whether there is a need for concern. Plus, a Normal Heights nonprofit is helping students turn recycled objects into art, and giving San Diegans a chance to donate and buy second-hand supplies.