Miami Public Service Aide Tatayana Harris enters information into her laptop after clearing an accident in Miami's Little Havana community. Harris has been a Miami Police PSA for five years and hopes to become a police officer.
Credit Marsha Halper for NPR
Miami Police Department dispatcher Shekita Johnson and officer Ernest Lawrence staff the boards at Miami's Communications Unit. Call-takers in the unit screen the 911 calls, then send them to dispatchers.
Credit Marsha Halper for NPR
Harris is upbeat as she responds to a fender bender in Little Havana. PSAs drive marked cars but are unarmed.
When the 911 phone system was established, it gave citizens a fast, easy way to reach police in an emergency.
But it also created a logistical challenge for law enforcement: Police departments get so many calls, 911 can be as much a burden as a boon. Many calls are non-emergencies, and responding can take police away from situations where they're really needed.
A few weeks ago, Alberto Baco Bague arrived in New York for a roadshow of sorts. In just 48 hours, Baco, Puerto Rico's secretary of economic development and commerce, met with more than 30 hedge fund managers, investors and others who could be classified as very well-off.
His mission might seem quixotic at best: trying to convince these well-heeled New Yorkers to uproot themselves from Manhattan and relocate to Puerto Rico. But he says they are starting to come.
Summer travel is in full swing, and that means crowded airports, flight delays and long security lines. To help calm weary travelers, some airports are turning to man's best friend.
San Jose's and Miami's international airports have therapy dog programs, and Los Angeles International Airport — ranked the second-most-stressful airport in the country last year — launched its own crew of comfort dogs this year.
<strong>'Heat' Stroke:</strong> The genius of this buddy-cop comedy is in its pairing of Sandra Bullock (left, as a by-the-book process nerd of an FBI suit) with Melissa McCarthy, who plays a sloppy Boston detective with no patience for procedure.
A big worry among people trying to wipe out polio is that the virus will regain a foothold, somewhere to launch a comeback — someplace, perhaps, like Somalia.
Polio has paralyzed 25 kids in Somalia and another six in a Kenyan refugee camp since early May, the Global Polio Eradication Initiative reported Wednesday. Before this outbreak, Somalia hadn't had a polio case in more than five years.
High-rise apartment buildings might not seem like fertile ground for making compost.
But officials in New York want to capture and recycle more of the city's food waste — even in some of the nation's most vertical neighborhoods. They're expanding a pilot program that's also trying to encourage composting by turning greenmarkets and libraries into drop-off sites for residents' food waste.
Egypt's President, Mohammed Morsi, was sworn into office one year ago this Sunday. Opposition groups plan major protests to mark the anniversary. Egyptians face rising food prices, fuel shortages and power outages in blistering summer heat.
And Merritt Kennedy reports from Cairo, demonstrators are calling for early elections and vowing to stay on the streets until Morsi quits.
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The battle over a new abortion bill in Texas will resume now that Governor Rick Perry has called a second special legislative session. It's scheduled to begin on Monday. This past Tuesday night, an audience far beyond Texas watched as a Democratic state senator filibustered an anti-abortion bill for 12 hours. When Republicans cut her off, spectators jeered and the chamber erupted in pandemonium.