Category Archives: Uncategorized

CMU graduate compares rural life in Michigan to city life in Chicago with video


A time-lapse video showcasing and contrasting Michigan’s peaceful nature scenes with Chicago’s fast moving atmosphere has been released by a Central Michigan University graduate.

“Divergence” is an 11 minute time-lapse video that features Cadillac, Mt. Pleasant, Lake Superior, Paradise Point and other spots around northern Michigan. Continue reading

Lower minimum wage for ages 20 and under could become a law


The minimum wage could drop for workers under 20 years of age, under a proposal in Lansing.

The bill states that the minimum wage for workers under 20 would be reduced to $7.25 an hour. Employees could get paid as little as $6.25 an hour for training. Continue reading

Michigan looks to fund cancer prevention initiatives

MDHHSThe Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is seeking proposals to help with cancer prevention and control.

The department has issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) from organizations around the state. Chosen projects could receive up to $80,000 in grants, over two fiscal years.

Public information officer, Jennifer Smith, says there is a need for cancer control and prevention programs across Michigan. Continue reading

Class assignment turns into effort to help journalists overseas

Press Uncuffed is offering supporters bracelets containing the engraved name of an imprisoned journalist.

Press Uncuffed is offering supporters bracelets containing the engraved name of an imprisoned journalist. Photo courtesy Press Uncuffed.

In the United States, freedom of the press is often taken for granted. But in other parts of the world, journalists are often imprisoned, or even killed, simply for reporting the news.

A new project aims to shine a light on some of these trouble spots for reporters worldwide. Continue reading

Film screening tells the story of a woman who rescues children from Nepalese prisons

Pushpa Basnet

At public radio, we love good stories. When we heard about Pushpa Basnet (push-pah bas-net) we knew we had to share her story.

Basnet is a Napalese woman who – for hundreds of children – has become Mamu.

Waiting for Mamu – 1 It’s a slang term for mother. It’s like another mother. It’s not your real mother, not your biological mother, all the kids call her Mamu.

That’s Thomas Morgan, a CMU graduate and documentary film maker who has created the film “Waiting for Mamu” It tells the story of how Basnet rescues children from prisons in Nepal.

Thomas Morgan said he was blown away when he met Pushpa Basnet. What the young woman, now 30-years old, dedicated her life to is saving children from prison.

Morgan said in Nepal, if a parent is sentenced to prison, the children often go to prison with them. “It’s not that the government is trying to be punitive in dealing with these children, or in some way trying to imprison children, It’s just such a ridiculously poor country that they don’t have any social services. There’s no place else for them to go. It’s the street by themselves or it’s with the parents in prison. And so That’s the best option they have.”

Waiting for Mamu - photo2

Morgan said Basnet met a little girl in prison when she was there for a social work class. She promised the girl she’d come back for her. She did that and then some. Today Basnet cares for more than 40 children. Kids that she rescued from Nepalese prisons. “Her life would be a lot easier if she didn’t do this,” Morgan said. “She comes from a caste that’s not supposed to serve a lower caste, and so that, in and of itself, was one hurdle. And then to be a strong woman in Nepal is not something that’s typical. It’s usually very much a male-dominated society, and so she’s really amazing and to think that she’s just 30 and has been doing this for ten-years, it’s just incredible.”

With the help of supporters, Morgan said, Basnet finally raised enough money to build a care facility for her kids. A complex where they can live.It’s called the Butterfly House. But as the house was nearing completion, it was badly damaged by an earthquake that devastated Nepal in April. Basnet and her kids moved into tents in a field.

Morgan said the Butterfly house will be rebuilt.

“The house itself will actually be better. Because of the earthquake, they’ve gone back in and we were able to bring in earthquake engineers from the US embassy in Nepal and have them look at it and make suggestions, and now they’re going back and re-inforcing. It will be safer than any building standard that they’ve had in the past and will actually be better when it’s completed.”

Morgan describes Pushpa Basnet as an inspirational force of nature. She was named CNN’s Hero of the Year in 2013. Morgan said in the past decade Basnet has helped more than 200 kids. Today 100 are still in prison with their parents, Waiting for Mamu.

A screening of the documentary “Waiting for Mamu” is scheduled Wednesday night at 7pm in the Park Library Auditorium on the campus of CMU. It is free and open to the public.

Study shows that rumble strips reduce collisions on rural highways.


Rumble strips on rural Michigan roadways are preventing crashes and saving lives, according to a study released this week.

The study found rumble strips reduced total collisions by 47 percent over a three year period.

“The overall result is that it reduces crashes very significantly at over 40 percent,” said Tapan Datta, a Wayne State University professor and chief investigator of the study. “And we also found fatality reduced by over 50 percent.”

Datta said the study estimates rumble strips saved $79 million over three years in collision-related costs.

The study was conducted over 5,000 miles of highway with centerline rumble strips

“It was one of the largest and most comprehensive studies of its kind, looking at what the effects of rumble strips are in terms of safety also cost effectiveness,” said Dan Weingarten with the Michigan Department of Transportation. “It came up with some results that we feel are very encouraging.”

Weingarten said the study may lead MDOT add even more rumble strips to rural highways in the future.


Police urge caution when meeting people off the internet

onlinedatingwarningYou may never know who’s on the other side of a computer screen, according to Michigan State Police officials.

Police are warning the public about so-called catfishing scams popping up in mid-Michigan. That’s when someone creates a fake online identity to lure unsuspecting victims into meeting in person. Continue reading

Bill would give students who default on loans a second chance

student-loan-debt1-680x430College graduates who default on private loans may soon have a second chance if legislation introduced on May 10th in the United State Congress, becomes a law.

Senator Gary Peters of Michigan introduced the Fair Student Credit Act, with bipartisan support from West Virginia Senator Shelley Moore Capito. Continue reading

Isabella Citizens for Health receives federal grant



After working over the past five years to become a federal qualified health center, a Mount Pleasant health center will now receive federal funding.

Isabella Citizens for Health, will receive just over 1.3 million dollars over the next two years in federal funding. The money will be used for day to day operations.

Prior to the grant, the facility was able to keep its doors open, but was operating at a loss.

Jennifer White is the Executive Director for the clinic. Say says the clinic is now going to be able to sustain themselves and operate independently of their supporters.

White says the clinic provides services to uninsured and under-insured patients, based on a sliding fee scale. The scale is based off of household income and size.

The center currently has over 4,000 patients, of which 1,200 were acquired in the last six months. The next closest federally qualified health center is nearly an hour away from Mount Pleasant.


Arenac and Wexford county receive $3.4 sewer upgrades to address contaminated water

Old sewage systems have contaminated surface and groundwater in Arenac County for years, according to officials with the Michigan USDA.

This month the USDA announced more than $3 million in grants will be going to two towns in Arenac and Wexford counties to fix these systems. Continue reading