Israeli Consul General in San Francisco Says That Israel Lacks Partners for Peace in the Middle East – May 10, 2019

Last weekend, more than twenty Palestinians and four Israelis died as missiles and mortars flew across the border between Gaza and Israel. Israeli Defense Forces said that 700 rockets and mortars were fired into Israel from the Gaza Strip. Israel responded with a massive bombardment. This was the worst fighting in the area since 2014.

KRCB news director Steve Mencher spoke about the situation with the Israeli Consul General in San Francisco, Shlomi Kofman. Mencher asked about the Palestinian casualties, particularly a pregnant woman and her 14-month-old child.

We know there are many points of view in our area about the Middle East – and if you would like to make your voice heard, please write to us, news@norcalpublicmedia.org.

Shirlee Zane Says Improvements in Mental Health Care Must Happen at All Levels of Government, Part 2 – May 9, 2019

Continuing our series for Mental Health Month, we’ve got part two of our interview with Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane. As she crusades for better mental health care at Kaiser Permanente, she believes others need to step up as well.

Yesterday, we heard how Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane met with Kaiser Permanente’s CEO about overhauling the insurer’s approach to mental health. The meeting included several families that had lost loved ones to suicide. Members of the group attribute those losses to deficits in Kaiser’s mental health services. Zane told KRCB News Director Steve Mencher she believes that the county and state also must take responsibility for improving mental health care.

Find more reporting on Mental Health at norcalpublicmedia.org.

Kaiser CEO Tyson Meets with Families Seeking Improvements in Mental Health Care, Part 1 – May 8, 2019

May is Mental Health Month. So, this week we bring you two reports on possible progress as families seek answers about needed improvements in mental health care from giant insurer Kaiser Permanente.

In late April, Sonoma County Supervisor Shirlee Zane traveled to Kaiser headquarters in Oakland. She was there with a group of family members who have, like her, lost loved ones to suicide despite seeking help from Kaiser. The group met with Kaiser CEO Bernard Tyson (TIE-son) and other executives and asked them to transform the health care giant’s approach to mental health. Zane told News Director Steve Mencher that the meeting was extremely emotional.

Part two of our discussion with Supervisor Shirlee Zane tomorrow. If you or a loved one are thinking about suicide, you can reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK, that’s 273-8255.

Prepare for Fire Season by Getting to Know Your Neighbors – May 7, 2019

What’s the best way to prepare for fire season? One non-profit says it’s throwing a neighborhood block party.

Now that the days are getting warmer and the hills are starting to turn brown it’s time to start thinking about preparing for fire season. San Francisco based non-profit, Neighborhood Empowerment Network, is working to make this chore more fun. Reporter Adia White talked with the group’s director, Daniel Homsey, about how Sonoma County can improve resilience with events the organization promotes, like their neighbor fests.

For more, visit norcalpublicmedia.org.

Pulitzer Prize-winning Poet Forrest Gander: ‘I Love Petaluma’ – May 3, 2019

Writers mostly toil in silence and solitude. Recognition is rare.

Yesterday, KRCB News Director Steve Mencher spoke with Pulitzer Prize-winning Poet Forrest Gander, who lives in Petaluma. They talked about the losses that led to his powerful collection “Be With.” Today, a happier conversation… about recognition and the comforts of finding community.

Find part one of their conversation at norcalpublicmedia.org.

Petaluma Writer Forrest Gander is the Winner of the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for Poetry – May 2, 2019

Sometimes, unspeakable tragedy leads to great art. Local poet Forrest Gander has had more than his share of loss in the past few years – last month, his new collection was honored with the Pulitzer Prize in Poetry.

When he came to our studio to speak with KRCB News Director Steve Mencher, he read an excerpt from his latest collection titled “Be With.” The verses he shared honor his mother, who has Alzheimer’s Disease.

Find links to Forrest Gander’s work at norcalpublicmedia.org.

Sonoma County’s New Health Officer Talks about the Measles Outbreak and Other Concerns – May 1, 2019

There have been over 700 measles cases reported this year. The outbreak is raising concerns over the number of parents who choose not to vaccinate their kids.

Sonoma County has a new Health Officer, responsible for overseeing the Department of Health Services. Dr. Celeste Philip started the job on April 9th and is replacing Karen Milman who stepped down from the role last March. Philip comes to us from Florida where she led the response to the Zika outbreak in 2016 and managed the state’s public health response during five hurricanes. Reporter Adia White talked with Philips about her background and the major health challenges facing Sonoma County today.

For more on health in Sonoma County visit norcalpublicmedia.org.

FEMA hosts “Prep Talk” Symposium in Santa Rosa to Highlight Recovery Effort – April 30, 2019

According to FEMA, the city of Santa Rosa has rebuilt quickly compared with other cities hit by major disasters. FEMA held its Emergency Preparedness Symposium in Santa Rosa last week to highlight the city’s efforts. It was only the second time the event has been held outside of Washington D.C. KRCB reporter Adia White spoke with FEMA’s California based regional administrator, Bon Fenton, at the event. She asked how we can further improve our emergency response and recovery ahead of this year’s fire season.

To learn more about how you can prepare for fire season and other disasters visit norcalpublicmedia.org.

Political Cartoonist Rob Rogers Talks About the Importance of Satire in a Democracy – April 26, 2019

Political cartoonist Rob Rogers was fired from his job at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette last year after being told to stop drawing unflattering cartoons of Donald Trump. His termination made national headlines and sparked debate about freedom of the press and political censorship. Roger’s book about the experience, titled “Enemy of the People,” comes out in July. KRCB reporter Adia White spoke with him about it at his book signing at the Charles Schulz Museum last week.

To see several of Rogers cartoons and learn more about his book visit norcalpublicmedia.org.

Sonoma County Sheriff’s Department Releases Documents Related to Police Misconduct Investigations – April 25, 2019

Under a state transparency law passed at the beginning of this year, law enforcement agencies are now required to release records on police shootings and internal misconduct investigations. Here in Sonoma County, the Sheriff’s department has made five investigations public, including the shooting death of 13-year-old Andy Lopez by then Sheriff’s Deputy Erick Gelhaus. KRCB Reporter Adia White talked with Sheriff Mark Essick about his release of these records and what new information has been brought to light.

To read the full report on the Andy Lopez investigation visit norcalpublicmedia.org.