Beth Courtney

Airs Sunday, June 4, 2016, at 6 p.m.
Louisiana is the prison capital of the world. Its incarceration rate is nearly double the rest of the country. And while Louisiana imprisons violent offenders at a rate comparable to other southern states, nonviolent offenders are imprisoned at a much higher rate.
A package of bills being proposed this legislative session attacks the mass incarceration problem from a number of angles. Should alternatives to prison be used for criminals charged with nonviolent offenses?

Airs Sunday, May 6, 2017, at 6 p.m. This week Governor John Bel Edwards declared a state of emergency for Louisiana’s coast. The declaration goes next to President Donald Trump and Congress. The goal is to raise the profile of the state’s coastal land loss plus speed up the federal permitting process for projects in Louisiana’s 2017 Coastal Master Plan. The Master Plan will be presented to the Legislature during this regular session.

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Airs Sunday, October 16, at 6 p.m. One national survey ranks Louisiana as 49th for academic achievement of public school students. Another national report ranks the state dead last. So, how well is the state’s public school system really performing? Where is there room for improvement? What will the new federal “Every Student Succeeds Act” mean for education in Louisiana? And how have the historic summer floods changed things?   Louisiana Public Square explores these issues and more on “Pass or Fail? Louisiana’s Education System” Wednesday, September 28 at 7 p.m.

Airs Sunday, March 6, at 6 p.m. On Governor John Bel Edwards' second day in office, he issued an executive order expanding Medicaid. An estimated 300,000 Louisiana residents will be eligible for coverage. How will the lives of these newly-insured change? What will the expansion mean for the cost of health care and insurance for everyone else? And how will hospitals and those with insurance from healthcare.gov be affected? Louisiana Public Square looks for answers on “Effects of Expansion: Medicaid in Louisiana.”
The panelists are:

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Airs Sunday, April 3, at 6 p.m. If you’re currently accused of a crime in Louisiana but can’t afford to hire an attorney, you may literally be “Defense-less.” Public Defenders Offices in twelve Louisiana districts say they don’t have the resources to keep up with the demand for court-appointed attorneys. Six districts have put suspects on waiting lists for counsel.

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