Thursday, April 30, 2009

Law and Order in the Ozarks (Part XXII): Public health initiatives take center stage

Recent issues of the Newton County Times (April 16, 2009 and April 9, 2009) report little in the way of crime. They do, however, feature a lot of public health news, including these headlines:
  • "Kids 'Kicking Butts' nationwide" about Arkansas kids rallying aginst tobacco at the 14th annual Kick Butts Day. It is accompanied by a photo of Newton County SWATS (Students Working Against Tobacco) doing educational work over spring break.
  • "'Arkansas Public Health Week' observed in county"
  • "Spook Out drama warns students against DWI" about an educational event organized by North Arkansas Regional Medical Center.
  • "Cancer Support Group offers financial assistance" is about a local effort to help patiends facing financial hardship due to their illness. A "Relay for Life" in Jasper, the county seat, is among the local fund raising efforts.
The only other front page story in the April 16 issue is headlined "Parking lot sale to benefit ParrTI," the shorthand for North Arkansas Regional Medical Center's Claude Parrish Radiation Therapy Institute. So that story, too, is ultimately about health care.

Inside the April 16, 2009 issue is this headline, "Jail holds 14 in March." It reports that fourteen inmates were housed in the condemned jail for a total of 83 inmate days in March, and a total cost of $404.50 for inmate meals. Total miles patrolled were 14,416, and 18 warrants were served with another 116 (with a total value in excess of $112K) outstanding.

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