Full Show

Foster Care, Zoning, and Allergies: Wednesday’s Show (March 30, 2016)

Last week (March 21, 2016), the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals denied an attempt by the Sttate of Texas to pause a revamp of its foster care system. That ruling leaves intact a December 2015 ruling by Judge Janis Graham Jack, who declared the system “broken” and unconstitutional. In ordering the overhaul, Judge Jack […]

Last week (March 21, 2016), the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals denied an attempt by the Sttate of Texas to pause a revamp of its foster care system. That ruling leaves intact a December 2015 ruling by Judge Janis Graham Jack, who declared the system “broken” and unconstitutional. In ordering the overhaul, Judge Jack concluded foster children “almost uniformly leave state custody more damaged than when they entered.” Judge Jack also appointed two Special Masters to oversee the system revamp. Francis McGovern and Kevin Ryan are expected to begin their appointed positions Friday.

On this edition of Houston Matters, we discuss the legal implications of the decision with Ellen Marrus, a research professor of law and the director of the Center for Children, Law and Policy at the University of Houston Law Center. We also hear from Dori Kornfeld Goldman, a partner with Houston-based law firm Yetter Coleman. In 2011, the firm filed a class action lawsuit on behalf of 12,000 foster children in Texas. 

Also this hour: Much is made about Houston’s lack of zoning. But Matthew Festa, a law professor from South Texas College of Law, argues Houston doesn’t really look that different from most other cities. We talk with Festa about whether a variety of land rules, regulations and restrictions are essentially zoning by other means.

Then: We’re seeing a heavy dose of tree pollen these days. And mold and weed counts, while low this week, are ever-present concerns for those who suffer from seasonal allergies. Never mind the cat dander. We welcome your allergy questions for Dr. Dat Tran, an allergist with McGovern Medical School at UTHealth and Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital.

Plus: Local author Dennis Abrams embarked on an ambitious project to break down all of William Shakespeare’s plays for young adults. Edel Howlin talks with Abrams about his two volume book, The Play’s The Thing.

Houston Matters offers a free daily, downloadable podcast here, on iTunes, Stitcher and various other podcasting apps.

Share