Patricia Murphy | KUOW News and Information

Patricia Murphy

Reporter

Year started with KUOW: 2000

Patricia Murphy is a feature reporter for KUOW. Patricia is part of two collaborative projects focusing on military and veterans.  The American Homefront Project is a partnership between public radio stations KUOW, WUNC, KPCC and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Back at Base is a collaboration between National Public Radio and seven member stations including KUOW.  

Patricia is an award-winning radio journalist. Prior to covering veterans and military affairs she reported on social issues and criminal justice. Patricia’s first job in radio news was at WBUR Boston in 1994. She’s worked at KUOW since 2000.

Patricia’s series “Less than Honorable,” investigated how the military handles more than 3,000 sexual assault cases each year. Her 2011 collaboration with the Seattle Times, “The Weight of War,” looked at heavy loads carried by troops and the increase in chronic orthopedic injuries as a result; the series won a national award for Excellence in Health Care Journalism from the Association of Healthcare Journalists. She also received a national Edward R. Murrow Award for a documentary on IV drug use and has had her work recognized with awards from the Public Radio News Directors Association and the Society of Professional Journalists.

In 2012, Patricia was inducted into the Dart Society, a network of journalists who cover trauma, conflict and social injustice.

Patricia holds a B.A. from Emerson College in Boston.

Ways to Connect

Seattle has one of the highest sales tax rates in the country. And now Mayor Ed Murray is poised to ask for just a bit more to address the city’s homeless crisis.


Mary Jean Ryan, executive director of the Road Map Project
KUOW photo/Gil Aegerter

If you're a kid of color living in poverty in our region, getting to college can be tough. The Road Map Project has been trying to help for seven years. Its goal was, by 2020, to double the rate at which students in South Seattle and South King County finish college.

But with growth changing the region so quickly, people at the project reassessed that time frame. The new goal: Raise the college graduation rate to 70 percent by the year 2030.

Dental assistant Kim Weston updates a chart at the Odessa Brown Children's Clinic in Seattle. Weston has worked at the clinic for more than a decade.
KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

Last week while lawmakers in Washington, D.C., were gnashing their teeth over what health insurance in the U.S. should look like, patients and providers in King County were wrestling with some of the same challenges they faced before the Affordable Care Act was in place.

President Donald Trump is proposing budget cuts that would deeply impact programs in King County.

The proposal has a long way to go, and ultimately Congress has the final say. But leaders worry about how it might hurt low-income residents.


King County's juvenile court and jail are located south of Capitol Hill.
Flickr Photo/jseattle

At any given time about 50 young people are booked into the juvenile detention facility on East Alder Street in Seattle. Some are awaiting trial, others are booked because there’s no adult to release them to. More than half are kids of color. 


Patricia Lally was on the bus going downtown from her West Seattle home when a man began uttering racially offensive statements.

“And I found myself so surprised and wondering what should I do?” she said.


Jasmin Samy is th civil rights manager at CAIR-Washington State, a chapter of America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. She says it's often difficult to get people to speak up when they think they're being discriminated against.
KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

When people of color try to rent housing in Seattle, they’re treated differently from white people.

Marchers walk through Seattle's Central Area on the 2015 anniversary of the shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

When Reverend David Billings started giving anti-racism trainings in the 1980s, he said many people "just didn't see it." But he said that's not the case today.

While structural and cultural racism remains entrenched in the U.S., Billings see a growing awareness by whites of their privilege and their role in combating the problem.  

Below are four of his main talking points. 


Rep. Adam Smith
Office of Adam Smith / U.S. House

U.S. Rep. Adam Smith says he’s deeply disturbed by comments made by President Donald Trump’s chief strategist, Steve Bannon.

The lobby at the King County juvenile detention center lacks privacy, jail workers say.
KUOW Photo/Natalie Newcomb

Some city and King County leaders are calling for a reappraisal of construction of a new youth jail in Seattle. But they're getting pushback.

County Executive Dow Constantine said there’s still a need to rebuild the current jail, but he says the county should adopt a goal of “zero youth detention.”

"It is the long goal and I’m going to ask the county family, not just the council, but the justice system to adopt that as our goal,” he said.

immigrant rights protest westlake park
KUOW Photo/Caroline Chamberlain

The protest was packed before it was scheduled to begin. 

Bodies were crowded in tight at Westlake Park as thousands of people gathered to protest President Trump's executive order on immigration, which had already sparked protests at Sea-Tac International Airport the night before.

Site of the gas leak.
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Seattle firefighters were called to the scene of a major gas leak early on Friday afternoon in Seattle’s University District.

Amy Knickrehm of Seattle told reporters at a news conference Monday that her chronic pain and depression went undiagnosed for years because she had no health care.
KUOW Photo/Patricia Murphy

King County Executive Dow Constantine said he’ll fight to keep affordable health care for people currently covered under Obamacare. 

Constantine held a news conference with Public Health officials, local providers and patients three days after President Donald Trump signed an executive order that begins the processes of rolling back the Affordable Care Act. 


Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
Twitter

If you’re a person of color in this country, every day you might encounter oppression that remains from systems set in motion hundreds of years ago.

The inequity that results affects everything from jobs to education to housing to health care. Given our history, what would it take to really bring racial equity?


Dr. Pedro Noguera, educator and sociologist
gseis.ucla.edu

Dr. Pedro Noguera is a UCLA sociologist and an expert in urban education. He was in Seattle Tuesday night to speak about the ways educators and administrators can improve student achievement and get them more engaged in school. He told Patricia Murphy many Seattle-area suburban schools are struggling with that balance, but many are doing it right. 

Educator Jasen Frelot
KUOW Photo/Isolde Raftery

Many white parents have difficulty finding the right words to use when talking to their kids about racism. Preschool director Jasen Frelot runs workshops for white parents. He starts by telling those parents to sit with their discomfort.

photo courtesy of UW Innovative Programs Research Group

Heavy alcohol use and binge drinking are on the rise in the military. And many service members with a problem don’t voluntarily seek treatment.

Research from the University of Washington found that allowing soldiers to assess the impacts of their drinking confidentially can help them cut down.


Socks and sandals, a true Northwest fashion symbol
Flickr Photo/Paul Williams (CC BY NC 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9UkbbE

Patricia Murphy speaks with Seattle Times data reporter Gene Balk about his article on the least fashionable neighborhood in Seattle. They also discuss what the causal style of Seattle says about the city. 

President Donald Trump
Flickr Photo/Gage Skidmore (CC BY SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9hKraP

University of Washington law students will keep a close watch on President-elect Donald Trump during his first months in office.

The law school is offering a brand-new course on presidential power.


Canadian flag
Flickr Photo/Alex Indigo (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/4eDBug

Patricia Murphy speaks with Vancouver Sun columnist Vaughn Palmer about the big stories in Canada in 2016. Many Canadians are glad to see the year come to a close; a poll shows most people think 2016 brought more bad than good for their country, the U.S. and the world as a whole.

File: King County, Wash. Sheriff John Urquhart testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013, before a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing.
AP Photo/Susan Walsh

A lawsuit has brought to light allegations that King County sheriff John Urquhart tried to quash a rape accusation against him.

Patricia Murphy speaks with Seattle Times economics columnist John Talton about how President-elect Donald Trump's economic polices will affect the Puget Sound region. 

Spokane Republican Cathy McMorris Rodgers says the current Republican health care bill is only part of a larger plan.
Flickr Photo/Gage Skidmore (CC BY-SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/e4kQ16

Patricia Murphy talks with Wall Street Journal reporter Amy Harder about the role of Donald Trump Jr. in deciding the president elect's pick for Interior secretary. Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers was initially a front runner for the position. On Thursday, Trump picked Montana Congressman Ryan Zinke.

John Zimmerman, a nurse anesthetist for the Veterans Administration in Minneapolis, leans over a patient. Under a new rule, some nurse practicioners are allowed to work independently rather than under a physician's close supervision.
Association of Veterans Affairs Nurse Anesthetists

The VA is giving more some nurse practitioners more autonomy to treat patients, but not all of them will be free from physician oversight.

Jeff Lynch survived catastrophic injuries from his two deployments to Iraq, but they left him unable to have children naturally.
Brian Batista

When his convoy was attacked with an improvised explosive device in Iraq in 2007, Army sergeant Jeff Lynch was seriously wounded. He suffered a traumatic brain injury, was hospitalized for months, and underwent more than a hundred surgeries.


Transgender veterans hoping the veterans administration would cover their sex reassignment surgery were dealt a setback after the administration dropped the plan.

Air Force veteran Katherine Pratt in front of an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Pratt's detachment was responsible for the operational tests.
Courtesy of Katherine Pratt

For some military service members returning to civilian life can be disorienting.

The Native American community is reaching out to help vets with a modern day version of an ancient ceremony known as “calling home.”

Kara McDermott for KUOW

New rules that go into effect Monday from the Department of Defense detail protocol for military doctors who care for transgender service members.

The rules also establish guidance for commanders.

Soldiers fire two rounds from their High Mobility Artillery Rocket systems at Yakima Training Center in 2011.
Flickr Photo/DVIDSHUB (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/9MtxXi

The Army plans to practice firing its High Mobility Artillery Rocket System this week at Joint Base Lewis-McChord despite concern from neighbors about the impact of the noise.

Much of the feedback solicited by the Army from neighbors around the base was negative. Many said noise from the unarmed rockets would be disruptive to children, animals and people with post-traumatic stress disorder.  

Patricia Murphy

The Department of Education is partnering with education nonprofits to help answer questions from students affected by the abrupt shutdown of ITT Technical Institute.

The 40,000 former students will have to find new schools if they want to pursue their education. But for the more than 6,000 of those ITT students who were veterans, the problems can be much more complicated.

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