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Wayne State's national de-escalation program aims to prevent excessive use of force

At Wayne State University, on-campus police have recently launched a National De-escalation Training Center. Here, the finest from various jurisdictions are trained in how to take down situations without the use of excessive force, something Officer Andrew Sheppard says should never be an option. "Instead of getting into a fight with you, I rather say, 'Hey man, let's talk this out. Whatever you did is not that bad,'" Sheppard said. Sheppard believes that when police use excessive force during confrontations, officers are "letting personal issues get above the job." According to data collected by the Washington Post, last year, at least 1,055 people were shot and killed by police nationwide. That’s more than the 1,021 shootings in 2020 and the 999 in 2019. "We as officers go through a divorce, we also go through ... PTSD. Again, we are human. We don’t know what's in the background of some of these police officers. We don’t know what's in the background in some of these citizens," Sheppard said. 

SCOTUS abortion ruling would endanger Black women

By Joe Guillen and Annalise Frank  Black women in Michigan already dealing with across-the-board health care inequities would especially suffer if Roe v. Wade is struck down, health care experts say. It's a matter of life and death. Restricted abortion access in Michigan would endanger Black women's lives because they are three times more likely to die from a pregnancy-related cause than white women. It's not just about access to health care. Even when Black women have access, structural racism within the medical community affects the care they receive. "We're not believed, we are rendered invisible and people don't believe our pain," Ijeoma Nnodim Opara, an assistant professor of internal medicine and pediatrics at Wayne State University, tells Axios. 
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Theatre and Dance at Wayne announces 2022-2023 season

Theatre and Dance at Wayne, the producing arm of the Maggie Allesee Department of Theatre and Dance at Wayne State University, has announced its 2022-2023 production season. Theatre and Dance at Wayne has curated a season of theatre and dance productions that will delight and inspire you with four plays, two musicals, two dance concerts, and four student-run productions. The season opens in September 2022 with Rent, the iconic musical about falling in love, finding your voice and living for today. Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again., opening in October 2022, is a wildly experimental and inventive new play that does not behave, is about the conundrums of being a woman in the 21st century. Fans of Shakespeare will be thrilled to attend his comedy The Merry Wives of Windsor in November 2022. 
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Analysis: Legal questions haunt IVF industry if Roe overturned

My wife and I have a big decision to make. Roughly 7 1/2 years ago, we entered our eighth and last cycle in our attempts at in vitro fertilization, the result of which were two healthy, and mischievous, twin boys. They're almost 7.  But the process left a half-dozen unused embryos that remain frozen in cryogenic storage. We've continued to pay the IVF clinic to keep those potential children safe, but after careful consideration we're ready to keep our family to four. That leaves three options: donate those embryos to another couple struggling with fertility, donate them to science or destroy them. But fears that the U.S. Supreme Court could overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade ruling have added uncertainty for would-be parents and the providers trying to help them conceive. Christopher Lund, professor of law at Wayne State University, (says) that the 1931 law isn't necessarily applicable to IVF procedures. But, he said, the law is vague in defining what is considered a miscarriage or abortion. Section 14 of the law forbids "administering to any pregnant women any medicine, drug, [or] substance ... to procure [a] miscarriage." Section 15 forbids the providing or selling "any pills, powder, drugs or combination of drugs, designed expressly for the use of females for the purpose of procuring an abortion." 

Reasons why most young adults sweep depression under the rug

Over the last decade, more than half of young adults with depression reported not receiving treatment in a survey, and important reasons were related to cost and stigma. Cos of care was the most common problem for young patients with major depressive episodes, with the frequency of cost being cited as a barrier to mental health care going from 51.1% to 54.7% in 2019. Other barriers to care included people not knowing where to go for treatment, worrying about confidentiality, not wanting to take medication, and not having the time, researchers wrote in JAMA Network Open. Community-based education is vital to combat some of those beliefs, said Arash Javanbakht, associate professor of psychiatry at Wayne State University’s School of Medicine. He said the study’s results suggest the medical community is “behind in educating the public not only about mental illness but also [about] how to navigate the healthcare system, get evaluated, and receive needed care.” “Many patients think medications are addictive, zombify them, or change the way of their thinking,” said Javanbakht. “This also closely ties with the stigma of having mental illness [and] its personal, cultural, and media aspects…There is a need for more realistic education about the prevalence of mental illness, its biological nature, variety of treatment options, and similarities with other illnesses of the body. The government should definitely be more active in this area of public education via media and social media.”
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First Starbucks in Michigan to reveal union vote as others set elections

A Starbucks store in Grand Rapids is poised to be the first in Michigan to count votes for unionization, while more than half a dozen others in the state have set election dates. Staff at Workers United are confident the vote will be in favor of unionizing. On Monday, the National Labor Relations Board authorized four stores in Ann Arbor and one each in Grand Blanc, East Lansing and Flint to hold elections. Workers United was notified that a total of 10 stores in Michigan have been approved for election dates in early June. Seattle-based Starbucks has more than 15,000 locations throughout the U.S. Since the recent wave to unionize began in December in New York, more than 50 stores have voted to unionize, while hundreds more are poised to vote soon. Employees have demanded higher wages, better working conditions, and a platform to voice worker interests. On the other side, CEO Howard Schultz has taken a strong stance against unions and said the company could not have grown into a globally famous coffee behemoth with the restraints of organized labor. The Starbucks unionization effort has the potential to rekindle the labor movement in the U.S., and organizing in Michigan, once a union stronghold, has symbolic significance, said Marick Masters, former director of Wayne State University’s labor relations department and current interim chair of the department of finance and business. “If you combine it with some recent successes that unions have had at Amazon, I think that they have the potential to be transformative in the sense of really rekindling the labor movement, but we are a long way form that type of rejuvenation.” Unionization is only half the battle, Masters said. Winning better benefits for employees will be a tough go. “There are serious challenges that the union will face in trying to represent workers at Starbucks sites,” he said. “Their management team is going to become more aggressive and sophisticated in resisting in these campaigns. They’ll resort to a whole bag of tricks to discourage workers at other sites from unionizing.”
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Detroit studies plan to reduce the fiscal ‘penalty’ of residency

By Malachi Barrett  Detroit is looking at policy changes to ease the “unsustainable” tax burden it places on residents and to deter land speculators from snapping up and sitting on vacant property. Varying tax rates – higher for open land and lower for structures and improvements – could reduce tax bills for homeowners and accelerate the development of long-vacant properties, according to a study cited by the city as it investigates how to bring down residential property taxes. The “split-rate” system has attracted interest from city leaders for years, dating back to when Detroit filed for bankruptcy in 2013, and is getting a renewed push. Matthew Roling, an adjunct professor at Wayne State University with past experience at the Detroit Economic Growth Corp. and Rock Ventures, said he’s encouraged city officials are looking at innovative ways to prevent tax delinquency and foreclosure that is “burning out” neighborhoods. “I don’t know if it’s going to be a silver bullet,” Roling said. “The devil is in the details. There is a huge problem here and it’s that the property tax regime in the city of Detroit has failed the city. Let’s start with that.” 
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Stevie Wonder gets honorary doctorate at Wayne State University commencement

Donning a green cap and gown and treating a crowd of graduates to a pair of off-the-cuff song performances, Stevie Wonder accepted an honorary degree Saturday from Wayne State University. Two miles south of Motown’s Hitsville, U.S.A., where Wonder recorded many of his iconic hits, the 71-year-old star took the stage at the Wayne State Fieldhouse to be presented his doctor of humane letters by the WSU Board of Governors.
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Spotlight on the News: Inside Mental Health Awareness Month

As part of Mental Health Awareness Month, Spotlight on the News hosted a discussion about what’s being done in Michigan to increase the number of sorely needed behavioral health professionals, which included insights from Dr. Sheryl Kubiak, dean of the Wayne State University School of Social Work. “As many know, the behavioral health issues that have arisen because of the pandemic have accelerated the need for people with professional degrees in mental health and substance abuse disorders. Unfortunately, prior to the pandemic, we had a shortage of professionals in those fields, particularly in public sector mental health and community mental health. It’s so accelerated now that many of organizations and community providers have up to 30% vacancy rates, and that’s resulted in closing programs and waitlists. It really is not the time to be doing that,” Kubiak said. “From an academic setting, I’m trying to encourage people to come into this profession, but we’ve got some hurdles: high cost of tuition and low wages. It’s not the greatest environment, but it is very worthwhile and we’re working on some of those issues.”  
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Abortion pills present new challenge for Michigan if Roe overturned

With the possibility that an abortion ban will soon take hold in Michigan, both women and policymakers are focusing more attention on mail-order abortion pills, which are broadly available and present a stern challenge to enforcing future restrictions. Of the nearly 30,000 Michigan abortions in 2020, more than half involved pills taken at home to end a pregnancy, rather than a surgical procedure at a clinic or hospital, echoing national trends. The pills became even easier to obtain during COVID, when the Biden administration lifted a requirement that women visit their doctor to pick up a prescription. Abortion law and politics were jolted by the publication of a leaked draft of a Supreme Court opinion that would strike down Roe v. Wade, the 1973 ruling that established a right to abortion under the U.S. Constitution. Should that draft represent the court’s final decision, Michigan would again be governed by a 1931 state law that outlaws abortions in most instances along with the sale of pills or drugs to induce it. It is unclear if abortion pills will remain legal in Michigan. The presents “really complicated questions with uncertain answers,” said Lance Gable, a Wayne State University law professor with expertise in public health law and bioethics.  
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He was a CEO at 20 and a Wayne State University graduate at 21

There’s an undertone of panic beneath the stirring sounds of “Pomp and Circumstance” at your average college graduation ceremony – the knowledge that after the well-earned joy of the occasion, there’s that tricky business of finding a job. Zeeshan Tariq graduates Saturday from Wayne State University’s Mike Ilitch School of Business, and his concerns are a bit different: How’s the work crew doing on those new porches at the apartment complex in Troy? And has anyone dealt with the bathroom door in unit 17 that won’t all the way shut? In 2020, Tariq sold off the last of his 10 residential properties in Detroit, and is concentrating on the apartments he co-owns in Troy and Linden while he crunches numbers to see what might be worth acquiring next. Tariq, now 21, bought his first house at 17, when he was a senior at Farmington Hills Harrison High. Bussing tables at a Middle Eastern restaurant while slinging boxes at a grocery store during summer breaks, he amassed $6,500 and paid all but $500 of it for a bungalow on the west side of Detroit. He sold the home a year later for almost $30,000. Tariq estimates that his real estate company Tariq Development Co., LLC has bought, sold or consulted on more than $10 million worth of property. Tariq says his unofficial charge to the rest of the class of 2022 is “Do the right thing. And do what’s in front of you.”  
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In memoir, Wayne State president hopes to inspire others to persevere

Wayne State University President M. Roy Wilson believes many people make assumptions about his background because of his success. The Harvard-trained ophthalmologist is nearing a decade at the helm of the Detroit college after a distinguished career in key higher education and medical leadership roles. But in his memoir published Wednesday, Wilson, 68, shatters any preconceived notions of a privileged upbringing. The book includes intimate details about his childhood, years of which were spent in Japan. The son of a Japanese mother and African American father, he explains that his father was an alcoholic who served in the Navy and Air Force and was often away from home; his mother, he wrote, was a compulsive gambler who left he and his sister, Dianna, on their own sometimes months at a time. “It was a lot, growing up by ourselves,” Wilson told The Detroit News. “Some of the things are so unbelievable, that people are going to say, ‘No, that really didn’t happen.” The book chronicles how Wilson faced other setbacks, racist incidents and health issues, yet prevailed. He said he wrote the book to send a message that even when things are dark, there is a way. “I wanted to target students who have challenges in their life, to persevere, find a way, graduate, to get through it, whatever it is,” said Wilson. “That is really the theme of the book that even in the darkest of times, something good can come out of it.” That is how the book got its name, “The Plum Trees Blossom Even in Winter.”  
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Why the Supreme Court rejected Boston’s case against raising the Christian flag

Mark Satta, assistant professor of philosophy at Wayne State University, wrote an article explaining and analyzing the Supreme Court’s Shurtleff v. Boston case ruling, in which the court unanimously held that the City of Boston violated the First Amendment’s free speech rights of a group that promotes the appreciation of “God, home, and country” by denying its request to raise a Christian flag at the site, given that the city had previously allowed secular groups to temporarily use the flagpole. Satta writes that “the key question, which determined the outcome in the case, was whether raising a flag on City Hall’s third flagpole was an act of government speech or private expression: categories covered by two different free speech doctrines…” 

How AI can increase the effectiveness of point-of-care ultrasounds

Dr. Mark Favot, associate professor of EM ultrasound education at Wayne State University School of Medicine, spoke about how artificial intelligence guidance can make a different with point-of-care ultrasound. For patients who need care in rural areas, getting diagnostic testing can be a complicated process, and innovation in point-of-care ultrasound devices can help make care more broadly available and less expensive in remote regions. Dr. Favot noted that today’s medical students are very technology savvy, and that institutions, like Wayne State, that have strong point-of-care ultrasound curricula have seen increases in applications from prospective students. “…they will not stand idly by and accept that the 200-plus year-old technology like a stethoscope is the most effective diagnostic tool for their patients. They have and will continue to demand more out of their education,” Favot said.  
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For Astros prospect, Wayne State product Hunter Brown, ‘stuff is there’ for MLB shot

Hunter Brown, a 23-year-old St. Clair Shores native and Houston Astros pitching prospect, witnessed first-hand in spring training what it’s like to go head-to-head against Juan Soto of the Washington Nationals, who’s already an All Star and two-time Silver Slugger award winner. “I threw up-and-in, and he did the Soto shuffle on me,” Brown said, laughing. “It was an experience.” Hunter bested Soto on an inside pitch to force a fielder’s choice, showing a side of Brown in which he prides himself: He doesn’t pitch in fear, regardless of the hitter. The Astros selected Brown in the fifth round (No. 166 overall) of the 2019 Major League Baseball Draft out of Wayne State. The selection made Brown the second-highest drafted player in Wayne State history, behind right-hander Anthony Bass, who went No. 165 overall to the San Diego Padres in 2008.  
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17 questions could help protect Michigan credit union members from fraud

Michigan's Financial Exploitation Prevention Act, which took effect last September, requires banks and credit unions to train employees and put procedures in place to spot signs of financial exploitation. The goal is to make Michigan's financial institutions better equipped to identify and report the financial exploitation of older consumers and vulnerable adults. The Michigan Legacy Credit Union now partnering with Wayne State University's Institute of Gerontology to offer a survey to customers that can help prevent financial abuse. The survey, which is voluntary, can help give a baseline of someone's vulnerability and then alert employees at the cred union to be on the lookout for potential issues. Peter A. Lichtenberg, director of the Institute of Gerontology, said adults don't have to be well into their retirement years to end up being financially vulnerable. "Older adults are not scammed more often than other people are," Lichtenberg said. "Unfortunately, they lose more money." Lichtenberg, who has spent nearly two decades researching financial vulnerability, said the main goal of the survey is to prevent financial exploitation. "We look at it as a risk scale," he said. Often, Lichtenberg said, people view financial decisions as purely an intellectual activity, but ignore the emotional and psychological triggers. One's financial health, he noted, is part of one's overall health. 
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Wayne State President reveals deeply personal experiences in new memoir

By Jake Neher  Wayne State University President Dr. M. Roy Wilson is turning inward with a new memoir that is both reflective and at times deeply revealing. “The Plum Tree Blossoms Even in Winter” looks back on Wilson’s troubled childhood starting in Japan. It then journeys through his accomplishments, setbacks, and terrifying medical troubles as an adult. The book will be released on May 4. President Wilson will host a book signing and meet-and-greet that day at the Wayne State University Barnes and Noble from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. “The book is about challenges and not giving up and even in the darkest of times that you can persevere,” said President Wilson.