News & Public Affairs

Friday May 22, 2015


Former State Senator Helen Gordon Davis

photo by Rob Lorei

Radioactivity remembers former state senator Helen Gordon Davis

Today on Radioactivity we listen back to a 2013 interview with former state senator Helen Gordon Davis, who died Monday at the age of 88. She was the first woman from Hillsborough county to be elected to the state senate, serving 6 terms and one term in the state house. She was the first white woman in Florida to join the NAACP and was a known advocate for minorities, the poor, and women's rights.

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First Baptist Church in Downtown Tampa

photo by James Willamor/Flickr

America is losing its religion, atheist activist Hemant Mehta discusses why

Last week the Pew Research Center released an extensive study showing that the number of self-identified christians are on the decline, falling 8 percentage points in the last 7 years, according to the survey. Meanwhile the numbers of the religiously unaffiliated, including atheists and agnostics, have increased 6 percent in the same amount of time, non-christian followers also increased slightly. Atheist blogger and author Hemant Mehta, joins us to discuss the meaning of the study's findings.

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Pinellas County Commissioners to hold conversation with citizens this week

Today on Radioactivity we talk with Pinellas County Commissioner Chair Charlie Justice, about a community conversation meeting that will take place tomorrow at the St.Petersburg College in Seminole. Citizens will be able to engage with their local government and bring up questions and concerns about topics such as transportation, housing, and social services. a 'meet your commissioner' open house will precede the meeting at 5:30 with the conversation starting at The meeting will also be...

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Hands across the sands on Gandy Beach

photo by Samuel Johnson

Advocates want to clean up Florida's dirty water now and in the future

Environmentalists are focused on keeping Florida beaches clean and pristine; on Saturday more than a hundred people came together on Gandy Beach in St Petersburg for Hands Across the Sand. Residents, advocates and grassroots organizations were trying to raise awareness for a greener Florida environment.

Many of the participants came early to the beach on the south side of the Gandy Bridge to help pick up trash. Most beach-goers and onlookers didn’t see...

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Independent journalist Rania Khalek (r) with WMNF True Talk host Samar Jarrah.

photo by Seán Kinane/WMNF News.

USF students remember the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians

Last Friday, around one hundred people gathered at USF Tampa to commemorate the anniversary of the displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians. The Nakba event was organized by the Students for Justice in Palestine.

Each year on May 15, Palestinians remember the “Day of the Catastrophe” or Nakba. This day marks the 1948 displacement of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians from their homelands and the establishment of the state of Israel.

Independent journalist Rania Khalek an...

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photo by Josh Holton

WEDU's Florida This Week, and Hillsborough drafts ordinance on wage theft

Today we listen to the latest episode of WEDU's Florida this week, moderated by Radioactivity Host Rob Lorei. The topic of discussion centers around medicaid expansion, particularly Rick Scott's refusal to accept money tied to the ACA while asking the Obama administration to expand low-income pool funding within the state. the budget chiefs of the house and senate met recently and have said they made "a fair amount of progress", but the governor has warned state agencies to prepare for a po...

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A McDonald's in downtown Miami

photo by Phillip Pessar/Flickr

Tampa fast-food workers will travel to Mcdonald's HQ to protest working conditions

We kick-off this morning's Radioactivity with an interview with Bleu Rainer, a Tampa McDonald's cook that will travel to the company's headquarters in Illinois to call for an increase in wages for its employees. Rainer wants a living raise and right to unionize for the restaurants employees, saying that the minimum wage that many of them receive keeps them trapped in poverty. He is one of a dozen local workers that will be protesting the Mcdonald's annual shareholder's meeting next week.


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photo by franklabanca/flickr

Local students compete in the world's largest science fair in Pittsburgh

Today on Radioactivity we talk with 3 bay area students who are in Pittsburgh to participate in the World's largest science fair. Colton Lewis, Margaret Parrish,and Rebecca Elsishans are all high schools students that have entered The Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, a competition that awards over $4 million in prizes and scholarships. The student's projects range from nanotube technology, electromagnetic science and public health through water sanitation.

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U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez.

photo by

In Florida Secretary of Labor pushes paid family leave and increased minimum wage

The U.S. Secretary of Labor is in Florida this week pushing for an increased minimum wage and for paid leave for employees; Wednesday in St. Petersburg Tom Perez rallied for paid family leave and Thursday in Miami Secretary Perez is pushing for a higher federal minimum wage.

WMNF News spoke with him Wednesday night and he said the Obama administration wants a $12/hour minimum wage by 2020.

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