KUNM

Public Health New Mexico

Mission

KUNM‘s Public Health New Mexico reporting project provides in-depth, investigative and continuous coverage of public health in New Mexico, with an emphasis on poverty.

We cover the politicians, the policies, and the agencies responsible for sustaining public health and solving poverty. To fully report on these topics, we give voice to those who are voiceless in the media: people and practitioners; advocates and analysts; researchers and activists; and people hoping to build a better way of life. Through our work, citizens are engaged, government is made more accountable, and the profile of public health and poverty is elevated by expanded public discourse and civic engagement.

This project has been sustained by support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundationthe McCune Charitable FoundationCon Alma Health Foundation. and private donors.

KUNM broadcasts on transmitter throughout central and northern New Mexico, reaching more than half the state’s population.  Nielsen Audio Research from Fall 2014 shows 100,000 people a week listen to KUNM.

Hannah Colton / KUNM Public Radio

Let's Talk New Mexico, 4/25 8a: This month, at least ten people have been killed in acts of violence or child abuse in Albuquerque alone. Each sudden death is a deep loss, and the ripple effects are felt throughout New Mexico families, neighborhoods and schools. How have you or your community been affected by violence? What kinds of support do you need? This week on Let’s Talk New Mexico, we’ll remember those lost to violence and discuss ways to cope with grief and community trauma. To share your experience, email LetsTalk@kunm.org or call in live during the show.

Hannah Colton / KUNM Public Radio

There are as many pathways to a job or career in New Mexico as there are people. Some face more obstacles, though, and if regular high school doesn’t work out, the path can be especially steep. That’s where alternative schools and adult education programs can help. KUNM has this look at one charter high school inside a trade school.

Jake Schoellkopf / NMDOT

The state is looking to hire hundreds of new employees over the next two weeks. Agencies will accept walk-in applicants at “rapid hire” events in Carlsbad, Roswell, Farmington, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, and Las Cruces. 

Hannah Colton / KUNM Public Radio

Let's Talk New Mexico 4/11 8a: From the film industry to welding to culinary arts, technical training programs can help people find careers. This week, we’re talking about apprenticeships and vocational training, and we want to hear from you. 

What kind of career and technical education would be helpful for you? Have you been in a program like this? How accessible are these opportunities to job-seekers of different ages and backgrounds? Call in live during the show or email LetsTalk@kunm.org

Hannah Colton / KUNM Public Radio

Whether it’s losing a family member, getting bullied, or witnessing violence, traumatic stress early in life can affect a person’s emotional health well into adulthood. KUNM visited a mental health worker at an alternative high school in Albuquerque to find out how some young adults are working to recover.

May Ortega | KUNM

 

New Mexico high school students are smoking cigarettes a lot less than they used to. The rate among high schoolers in the state is at an all-time low. But now they’re using e-cigarettes. That rate is on track to outpace all other forms of tobacco use.

Hannah Colton / KUNM Public Radio

Whittier Elementary School in southeast Albuquerque is making a comeback. In 2017, the state Public Education Department designated it as among the worst of the “failing” schools. Albuquerque Public Schools came up with a plan to turn things around at Whittier, including increased staffing and afternoon extracurricular time called Genius Hour. KUNM visited a Genius Hour recently when the drama club presented its play.

Hannah Colton / KUNM Public Radio

This winter, a pipe burst at Coronado Elementary in downtown Albuquerque, damaging the school library. The city public library responded by issuing library cards to all Coronado students. Librarians presented the cards last week, and KUNM spoke with some fourth graders there.

May Ortega | KUNM / KUNM Radio

Having a lot of abandoned or foreclosed homes in your community can hurt morale and drag down property values. A group of neighborhood associations in Southeast Albuquerque are taking things into their own hands.

Hannah Colton/KUNM

School districts in New Mexico have options when it comes to trying to protect students and staff from violence. Rio Rancho Public Schools recently rolled out armed security guards, and not everyone is happy with that decision.

401(K)2013 via Wikimedia / CREATIVE COMMONS

The Affordable Care Act says health insurers can’t deny coverage for someone or charge them more if they have a pre-existing condition.

State senators approved a local measure 21-14 Thursday night that would protect folks in case that law is weakened or repealed. It now heads to Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham's desk.

Hannah Colton / KUNM Public Radio

On Friday, lawmakers advanced a bill that would make it easier for New Mexico school districts to recruit retired law enforcement officers to work as school security guards. The proposal took form in the wake of the December 2017 school shooting in Aztec, in which two students were killed. 

Julia via Flickr / Creative Commons Attribution License


The state Senate unanimously passed a bill this week to have Medicaid cover services to help people quit smoking.

 

Under the proposal, Medicaid would pay for counseling, medications and other resources that help get folks off cigarettes, e-cigs and chewing tobacco.

Hannah Colton / KUNM Public Radio

The Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission will hold a series of public hearings throughout March to gather reports of mistreatment of Native American students in K-12 schools in and around the Navajo Nation. 

Austin Fisher | Rio Grande Sun / Courtesy of the Rio Grande Sun

Española residents didn’t know about drinking water contamination for months. Thursday city officials issued a warning about high levels of nitrates in the city’s water that could be harmful to children and pregnant women and possibly fatal for infants.

Public Health New Mexico’s May Ortega spoke with Austin Fisher who broke the story this week for the Rio Grande Sun. He says test results show contaminant levels are lower now than they were in the fall.

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