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Red Light Fatalities and Law School Diversity: Wednesday’s Show (August 26, 2015)

According to a recent report from the National Coalition for Safer Roads, Houston leads the nation in red-light fatalities — deaths caused, at least in part, by a driver running a red light — based on data spanning a decade, from 2004 to 2013. In that time, 7,800 people died in red light crashes — 181 […]

According to a recent report from the National Coalition for Safer Roads, Houston leads the nation in red-light fatalities — deaths caused, at least in part, by a driver running a red light — based on data spanning a decade, from 2004 to 2013. In that time, 7,800 people died in red light crashes — 181 of them from Houston.

On this edition of Houston Matters, we discuss the report with the coalition’s Melissa Wandall, and welcome your thoughts on what it may suggest to you about Houstonians’ driving habits, and (naturally) the long-standing controversy over the city of Houston’s initial adoption (in 2004), and then voters’ rejection (in 2010), of red light cameras.

MORE: Red Light Cameras in Houston: The History, Controversy and Legacy (Houston Matters, July 7, 2014)

Also this hour: This time last year, UH Law School Dean Leonard Baynes channeled the lingo of the oil and gas industry when he said he planned “to launch a pipeline to create more opportunities for minorities, economically challenged and other underserved students to attend law school.” The University of Houston is not alone in this thinking. But recent enthusiasm among law schools towards minority recruitment comes as first-year law school enrollment is lower than it’s been in decades, according to American Bar Association data. What’s behind the decline? And is this focus on minority students being made in the interest of diversity, or simply to fill seats in first year law school classrooms? We talk it over with UH Law Center Dean Leonard Baynes, and Aaron Taylor, an Assistant Professor of Law at Saint Louis University School of Law, who has been examining enrollment trends and minority recruitment efforts at law schools nationwide.

Then: Conversations surrounding end-of-life care aren’t easy — even for health care professionals who work closely with terminally ill patients. We discuss how Houston’s doctors and nurses handle such conversations and interpret their mandate to “do no harm” when efforts to extend a patient’s life may conflict directly with the quality of that life. We also learn how medical schools here incorporate end-of-life care into their curriculum. We welcome your thoughts for medical ethicist Dr. Eugene Boisaubin, from the University of Texas Medical School at Houston, and Petra Grami, a nurse manager from Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center.

Plus: News 88.7’s Laura Isensee presents the latest installment of Inside the Classroom.

And: We continue our family business series with father and son physicians. Dr. Herbert DuPont is a professor and Director of the Center for Infectious Diseases at the UT School of Public Health. His son, Dr. Drew DuPont, is an associate professor at UTHealth Medical School. They talk with Houston Matters’ Maggie Martin.

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