Jul 17, 2014|
Angela talks with City Councilmember Latoya Cantrell about making New Orleans a smoke-free city.
We're discussing the hot topics of the day with co-host of First Take, Todd Menesses.
Angela discusses the shooting in Lafayette and says farewell to WWL as she hands her timeslot off to Scoot.
What's trending in sports, news, and entertainment?
Angela talks with WWL-TV investigative reporter Katie Moore and Tulane law professor Tania Tetlow about the city's backlog of uninvestigated rape cases.
Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)
Well what a sad way really to start our Thursday. I know all of our hearts go out to the people on that airplane just unthinkable. And we will certainly. Not learn much more about what was happening but just such a tragedy. We want to uplift though and today we're gonna start with that we have three I think very interesting programs. We're beginning with councilwoman LaToya Cantrell who is nice enough to be here to talk about something. That I think a lot of people are talking about and that's good news. Then we're going to spend an hour with senator. JP realm not talking about the study that recently came out about. How universities are handling or not handling sexual assaults on campuses. And something that he is now promoting that's going to happen within the state Louisiana. And then our third program. Is we -- The sadness that we see happening to the mentally ill being housed -- Orleans parish prison. And the complexity of that and we have some some people who are very involved in on. Both in the world psychiatry that also. In handling this kind of thing and to look for answers is there any better way that it can be handled. So -- we have a lot to learn but we're gonna start as I said with. Next Monday it will begin a whole week of smoke free environments. And that means bars included. The smoke free week is the brainchild. Of New Orleans council member LaToya Cantrell and the Louisiana campaign for tobacco free living. And we tell if anybody can make this a fun week it's gonna be LaToya Cantrell. Because you're you're kicking it off on Monday I love this with a 610 stoppers. Yes. And tan you know we we really have come I think very far as a community. Starting with. The smoke free hospitals smoke free school smoke free buildings. And sorted and certainly restaurants music deal a huge huge deal and now we're looking at the bars yes and one I'm hearing from New Orleans. There's an awful lot of bars were jumping on. Well we have now over 100. In the city of New Orleans that have done it. On their own and they are seeing the benefits. And their they have and lost revenue they've actually gain revenue. Their employees. Right are working -- healthier environment. And and of course it's about it's about help people living longer. And so I think just across the board smoke free week is a great way. Too I'm not only do the outreach to let people know that bars have gone smoke free over a hundred of them. But also working with those bar owners who are contemplating. Whether or not they should go smoke free it's always -- when you can create an environment. That's a welcoming one to where we can learn from one another and we can move in the right direction together. To make our city healthier. To make our employees healthier. And also it's about time our culture and our city aren't musicians who play right in bars throughout the city it's about them as well so they're part of the whole movement. And we're just wanting to alert people. Ask them to get involved with kicking off the week at the -- email. A with a sixteen stoppers. So it's going to be a great great week we're going to be wrapping up pains at the maple leaf bar who. As also started they're going smoke free that's a big big deal it's a huge wind. For the city of New Orleans so. How many bar should we have tons -- we have the hundred hits on bars yes country -- so what did you Jews and a -- to them our. Well end in April my office began to identify. All of our bars in the city and particularly identify. Those that have gone smoke free. We had a special order of business at this City Council meeting. In April where we invited and we gave proclamations we celebrate. Their movement we had missed birth from -- this round also participate. In that special order of business to where she gave her own personal. Testimony saying that she's dealing with with lung disease right now. From running our bar step listening -- the slash she was a smoker she. He's not she's a nonsmoker. But of course working and running her business. That's habits secondhand smoke. Its -- Yes it is deadly. And you a lot of the research on that was done right here in New Orleans yes secondhand smoke is so dangerous. You know I've said this before but for twenty years I smoked I smoked heavily. And I have -- it was very difficult to quit and -- you know thank heaven that was 25 years ago. But I have great sympathy for those who would like to quit and still struggle and yet we know that there -- lot of help out there. In just if if if you don't make it this time you try again. You just keep keep going with it. Absolutely and I think it is you make -- very important point and one that we are conscious in in with this initiative. And that is to ensure. That our residents our citizens get the support. They need. To then quit smoking it's one thing to say you know in and and having smoke free bars and establishments and of course our public buildings but it's also. Another thing that we have to do to guide people to the help that they need to make it as easy as possible for them to. Be smoke free. So they can have a healthier life right and that's what it's about. No it is when it's about but I I just act like from the very beginning I think we've come a long way as a community. Not from the days of what do you mean I can't smoke too. I understand I have to go outside the building and it just taking the final leap to the bars yet and I know that some bars are trying. Smoke free album happy hour yes just to you know put their foot in the water. And I agree with you I think a lot of people saying this is the deal I'm not gonna worry about and I'll go to the borrow at my drink he'll be with my friend if I wanna smoke I'll go outside. Well and more people will think because yes -- nonsmokers than there are more nonsmokers. Even across the state where at 79%. Of the people are nonsmokers in the city of New Orleans we actually -- at. That is a lighten -- not heard people are looking for ways that they cannot only be healthy but environments that appreciate and respect that as. That is beautiful news everyone stay with -- we're gonna continue. This conversation about. Smoke free week go to the bar no smoking you can do it. And also some other issues that the good councilwoman is gonna talk about stay with this financial under the W well. -- we are back with the council woman LaToya Cantrell talking about a very special week next week witches. Smoke free week in bars and and again sort of the last bastion. But I got some information from the American nonsmokers rights foundation. About I had no idea the number of cities. That are 100%. Smoke free I really didn't I thought maybe some. But everybody from Austin, Texas Boston Massachusetts. I mean from the big Dallas Texas Cleveland. All in new York city music bars and so in -- but you know it's time yes. It is time we're behind that of the eight on an even now states are Alexandria. Just went -- yes is yes it took it can happen it can happen. And dumb and and with the disparities that -- help -- scared he's in our in our city. I think it is. Is surprise party for us to take our health series. And to make environments. A healthy for all citizens it's that time the cancer is a part of you know the chronic illness. It's almost now you're doing good if you don't have to. The way that it's it's spreading in almost everyone has been impacted in some way. From that disease. And and so this is just to promote healthy environments for all our employees. Where destination city. And -- terms of percentages where. In the hospitality industry and our musicians. As well in bars. On and we have to truly. Look out for them. You know I would I'm not going to assume that I I would think perhaps that. Many bar owners may be in the quarter would be concerned -- the tourist won't comment on local small command. When in fact probably a lot of them in from other cities don't even think about smoking in a bar because it doesn't. They don't smoke in their own hometown. No they don't know when they come here and they go on to a -- you the -- asked. If you remove yourself from a smoking environment in new -- in -- like from me when I go. And to now a bar room workplaces smoke I have to leave immediately. And in -- -- -- your clothes. -- the next day your your throat -- sword your chest. You can feel lit. Severely -- you are not used to being in that environment and so we do have this this this issue. Where we are destination city and I tourists are coming here from places that you know half smoke free. And arm its. And I think that it has a negative impact when their visit and I think he could have a negative impact or one on our tourist economy. Well you kicking this off on Monday with a 610 stoppers 610 stoppers -- and where tell me again where that's going to be in that's going to be at the rusty nail on. July 21 from six to 8 PM. The -- mail has also agreed to extend their happy hour. Where are going to throughout the week have a town hall discussion. With bar owners those that have gone smoke free of those that are that that have not. And just discuss the pros and cons of it and easing. That the tension and the misperceptions. That's a round of smoke free environments and some say oh it really. It's it's expensive. To go smoke free actually it's more expensive to run an establishment. That isn't a smoking environment you have to paint. You walls so many times you know -- you have to to stick clean the place out it it's it it's unbelievable what it takes. To manage and maintain -- smoking in -- Well let's all breathe free yet if this is a good idea but we're gonna fundamentally shift here and go to something that was in the news with you yesterday. And that is the road home problems and just give an overview thirteen thousand people who had received money. Then got letters saying you -- yes these thirteen thousand people that you're referring to right now. Our tied to the elevation grant program OK and so they did get letters. In August started going out last year. Saying that they have violated their covenant. That they have to repay. X amount of dollars but what the letters didn't they didn't give a specific information to people about what documents I need. You know what you're saying that that I have missed my covenant I have. Haven't lived up to the what do you need from me. And so we have been working with advocates throughout the city. But also with us senator JP morale who. Was able to issue. Appealed get a law passed that now allows. People more time. To get their documentation in the what I am most excited about. Is that the officer of community development. They have to send out another round of letters. But telling people exactly. What is needed. For their particular case today get those documents eons to when they were general before they can no longer be general now. In -- -- specific they sent a we're gonna have taken the break in just a few seconds that we're not finished with this part of the discussion because. I was confused about that that's very interesting and positive things happening. We're going to hear more about what's happening with the incredible. Crash of this. Airline Malaysian airline. From CBS news and we're going to join them in just a few seconds. And we'll be back. Council member LaToya Cantrell -- special guest today now talking about. Sort of the mess of the road home problems. Again just update thirteen thousand people got letters saying you -- -- the money back yes man okay and then beat to take it. From the so of the thirteen thousand people that receive the letters they were general Anders is saying you violated your company. And you didn't use the money for the elevation. Right -- but but not giving information specific information severe cases to say. What documentation. Is steel needed for us to one. Check you office being compliant. And and closing out your -- your case -- you know closing it out. An and you're -- you're good you're you're -- in your clear. So what's. What has happened is that how it. Re class act allows our residents to reclassify. Their elevation grain if they use the money. To re pair of their home. Because road home grants. Across the boer war in adequate. In the majority of our communities and that's been -- So -- said if you use your elevation money. To repair you can reclassified your group your grant and not have to repay money. But. We did not adequately notify people so you have those thirteen thousand people. And only thirteen hundred. Has asked to reclassify their -- 10%. -- yes and only fourteen. Had been approved to reclassify. So clearly we have a problem. And we need on the ground case management. To help these thirteen thousand people potentially. That can reclassify their collect their grants and as long as they improve. You know that found that the money went to their home and we're also working on a self certification process. That would limit the amount of documentation that's needed nine years later to prove that you have. Repeal -- repaired your home with those elevation dollars. And so this is really about doing outreach that's necessary. Advocating for additional case managers. On the ground here in the city of New Orleans we know. That there are funds that have been allocated towards case management by the state. That are available to help so -- are simply asking -- and up pop up. Give it to the locals to -- case management to help our people yesterday it was a great day because we did get a commitment from. -- Forbes who is the director. Of OCD. Was there any explanation by him on how can it be that out of thirteen thousand only thirteen hundred. Got the message and only fourteen of those have been completed. No clear messages at all. Other than they do acknowledge that we have a prop. And and so we have a commitments that they are willing to work with us to fix this problem because deadlines are approaching. And Hud is saying to the state. Hey you're going to have to repay the money the mansion for for somebody who. Probably very small percent who used the elevation money not for their home. They have to pay it back they would have to repay it back. But we believe that that is a small percentage. And especially when we know. That the majority of the people with the road home funds who got road home really -- grouped them. The formula they used discriminated against people living in majority African American communities. That went to the US Supreme Court. Fair housing our advocates here make sure. That people were able to not only be hurt but they did get what they work deserve meaning that down they they. Made the case that the formulas were discriminatory. And therefore you know people have been suffering because of and and they did they were forced to use their elevation money because they did not give adequate funds from the road program. That is a fact and so from that we know that out of this thirteen thousand the majority of the people did exactly what they were supposed to do. But relax those requirements. So if they can reclassify their grant. And and also just to be able to rebuild them you know their homes and get back to living their life for those who did used their. Elevation grants to complete their homes. Could they've been applied for another grant for elevation or is that over that's pretty much over okay. It's it's it's that things are closing out you know deadlines are are are here summit passed. And so we're just trying to stop the harassment. Especially if people who've done the right thing. If somebody got road home money and not for elevation but road home money. And didn't fix their house are they liable. They would definitely be liable because they would have. Not lived up to -- they're confident in their agreement to use public federal state money. To rebuild and repair their home. That is is that's that's against the law it is against the law but you know my word if they can't get. And the thirteen hundred who only got fourteen functioning. How do you get the money back well an. Exactly. How do you how -- and Catalina forced how'd you force and people have already spent it you can't get there's no getting back. But it's it's causing a lot of anxiety and tension throughout the community. Especially. To our elderly population. But people have done all that they were supposed to do. Off their backs and close out their cases but we need to help people case by case that's why we need more local case in which. What LaToya controls and stay with us we're going to be talking about some other issues. And again a developing story Malaysia airlines flight seventeen is down all 295 people dead 280 passengers fifteen crew members. It's expected people from all over the world were on board including Americans. The passenger plane left answers and for Kuala -- for it crashed in the eastern Ukraine. We still don't have a cause for the crash but we're gonna have updates as they become available. We'll be right back financial on -- and -- will. We are talking with LaToya Cantrell -- really appreciate your time very briefly because it was so recent we had done. The neighborhood group not the couple groups actually from the warehouse district concern. About the new proposed to tell and and what it's gonna look like in their area and more importantly I think traffic and parking issues. And and we tried to get to you were very busy but just sort of your thoughts on it well. I I do agree with the communities that traffic and parking. Is an issue that we have. Not just specific to one development but it's an issue that we have. For the entire. Warehouse district and it's something that I have in speaking with. The administration on as well as. Our leadership with the conventions and their and we wanted to use. The expansion of the convention center as a way real catalyst I -- I'm using -- as a catalyst. To get a comprehensive traffic and parking studies. Done that not just deals with the warehouse district but I wanna polian what's happening also with the convention center and also the -- -- districts so how traffic comes in but also moves out. Of the space we're gonna have to be innovative. I am starting to do -- best practices visiting various cities Philadelphia New York. And others to see how they manage that we do need density in the warehouse district in the areas where -- that's problem for that it's a mixed use. Environment. That's not just residential it's mixed use and it has to be. Of course supported. And and developed. A responsibly so I agree with that and so so and and we also have to look at. Just being innovative in terms of creating parking. And when you're limited in some ways to issues of high. The and you really can't and on site parking because those are you know if you wanna -- garage opened at the bottom war. We have to be creative and I am open to that. I am open to listening and working with our residential community. As well as our commercial community as well this is a mixed use. In the arm. You know it's almost like -- victims of our success because the warehouse district has just -- yes and it's in the attractiveness of it. Is that if this next you all idiots and and that it can be very wall couple too but. In fact it if we don't fight -- the traffic thing we're gonna blow. -- we we have to get it right again and we have to make it a -- are. And so and that's what I am working on with with the administration had a week meeting even this week with. To Johnson the president of that director of the convention center where we're on the same page and we're going to. -- resources and truly leverage. The resource as we can't you deal with this issue because it's not going away no it's not it's not going away we're going to continue to develop and grow and we want back. But we have to ensure that our neighborhoods are surely -- global. Bike friendly. And I just say from bar but to have a hotel that doesn't have on site parking. In an area that is already kind of stretched to the limit. On parking what you going to a restaurant or bar or work. You know. It's a problem it's it it is a problem with 65 feet that's that's the height limit that swept we were able. To ensure that the developers adhere to that height limit. But it's up parking lots right now that's providing. Really no value to. The community at all. And it needs to be developed. And they are the hotel will be doing in have taken an innovative approach like the meaning of hotels that are under development -- out. The district right now and that is utilizing existing. Parking garages and lots. To being used their ballet you know they will be contacting with existing. Parking supplies you know one thing because I was over the World War II museum this weekend. And they were telling me they're all excited is there any bit but that big beautiful parking lot is going to be a -- it will be -- hotel and I -- thinking -- where's all that parking that we mean. We'll -- creating a day at a garage as well so and and they have CD high eight on their side they can Angola. So you really have to be creative and innovative in areas that we want to maintain a -- high and which is great. But that means that we have to be innovative and create. An I'm willing to do and and but within the guidelines of the master plan and that was there -- other big issue was. That's why we have a master plan. Does everybody agreed we want to honor this kind of the thing for every neighborhood absolutely but as you grow and as you develop discuss plans you have to revisit. And you have to reassess. And their living documents. And so and they are there are opportunities. For and a process that's built into the that we should honor and I agree with. But we we can not be so -- To where we can't look at how we have developed and how we have grown and make adjustments accordingly. We have to be responsible. And that is a part of it when you talk about developing the warehouse district. I think that's essential and it has to be the ballot we need density. We want we want to support businesses weenie commercials right in the in the area. So we need more residential units as well so it's a mixed use environment. Across the board and we do have to be responsible. I agree with my people on the ground I really do. Very briefly how to we get more cops. We need to. Really encourage. Good people that we now. In our communities and our families in our churches. To join you know PDQ. Behind the day which. And I know without a doubt. That we all know good folks and when trying properly which we train them well they make great. Police officers. And so there are series of initiatives that we are putting forth now in partnership of course with the with the mayor. And with the police foundation and -- -- recruiting were opened for business people need jobs and this is a great. Profession. Final note that is that's the -- and Barbara to be smoke free next week hopefully I thought we thank you so much no thank you so much LaToya Cantrell stay with us everyone will be right back. So grateful that LaToya Cantrell stayed with us and say with this for the next hour JP morale we're going to be talking about sexual assaults on campuses. Important.