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Children's Mental Health, Broward Vaccine Policy And 'Queen’s Gambit' Composer Wins Emmy

The South Florida Sun Sentinel

A conversation with a child psychologist and listener calls. Plus, Broward pays its employees to get vaccinated and a University of Miami professor wins an Emmy for the Queen's Gambit.

On this Monday, Sept. 20, episode of Sundial

Children’s Mental Health

This school year is supposed to be the closest to “normal” that we’ve had in a while. But the back and forth over mask mandates and the surge of the delta variant have disrupted students’ learning and made this year just as uncertain as 2020.

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Students and their caregivers are experiencing anxiety at alarming levels.

“Sometimes we have to be very thoughtful about routines that we’ve got into during the pandemic that are not super helpful for our children,” said Dr. Jill Ehrenreich-May, director of the Child and Adolescent Mood and Anxiety Treatment Program at the University of Miami. “If my kids or other kids that I work with express distress over things that are related to COVID, I don’t want to build on their fear by communicating even more danger and more threat that is necessary.”

The anxiety of the school year isn’t only true for the kids. Adults are also experiencing heightened levels of anxiety. Research from the Kaiser Family Foundation shows adult anxiety during the pandemic is 30 to 40% higher than usual.

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Broward Vaccination Policy

Broward County is now offering county employees $500 to show proof of vaccination. They’re also requiring regular COVID testing and charging $20 per check for employees that remain unvaccinated. Broward County Mayor Steve Geller explained the financial incentive was their best option given the restrictions in place by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“The governor as you are aware has issued an Executive Order prohibiting local governments from enacting their own vaccine mandates. The Florida Legislature has gone along with that and passed a law,” said Geller. “Governor, what works in Bradford County with the population of 28,000 doesn’t work in Broward County with a population of nearly 2 million.”

Mayor Geller also played a critical role in shaping the county’s proposed re-inspection process for condo buildings following the Surfside tragedy. Geller explained the new proposal will move 40 year recertification to 30. It will require thousands of buildings along the coast to be inspected but still requires legislation this session.

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Queen’s Gambit Music Composer Wins Emmy

The limited Netflix series “The Queen’s Gambit” was one of the big winners from Sunday's Emmy Awards — winning 11 awards. The show follows the story of Beth Harmon, an orphaned chess prodigy in the 1960s. She battles drug and alcohol dependency as well as misogyny.

University of Miami Frost School of Music professor Carlos Rafael Rivera scored the soundtrack for the show and won Outstanding Music Composition for a Limited Series. We spoke with Rivera earlier this year.

"Main Title" by Carlos Rafael Rivera - The Queen's Gambit
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Chris knew he wanted to work in public radio beginning in middle school, as WHYY played in his car rides to and from school in New Jersey. He’s freelanced for All Things Considered and was a desk associate for CBS Radio News in New York City. Most recently, he was producing for Capital Public Radio’s Insight booking guests, conducting research and leading special projects at Sacramento’s NPR affiliate.