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PM News Brief: President Biden Visit, Kid Suicide Rates & Financial Assistance For Foster Kids

Joe Biden Illustration
Pixabay
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President Joe Biden flew into Idaho Monday as the first of several stops around the West to talk about wildfires, climate change and his infrastructure plan. This story and more in Monday evening's news brief.

Monday evening, Sept. 13, 2021

Northern Utah

Salt Lake City Mayor Urges Council To Extend K-12 Mask Mandate 

Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall urged city council members to vote to extend her emergency mask mandate Monday afternoon. She said masks have helped Salt Lake City School District keep cases low among students. Mendenhall's order is set to expire in a week unless the city council votes to extend it. Both the Salt Lake City School District and city councilman Dan Dugan support the mayor’s order. Dugan said he plans on voting to extend the mandate. The city council is set to make the decision Tuesday evening. Read the full story. — Ivana Martinez 

State

Rate Of Suicide Among Utah Kids Doubles 

From 2010 to 2019, the rate of suicide among kids in Utah doubled. That made it the leading cause of death among people 19 years old and younger. The state’s health department released data Monday looking at the top causes for student injuries and child deaths. To address the alarming growth in suicide among young people, officials recommend having social workers at every school in Utah. They also call for more education campaigns to help families talk about the issue. Despite the suicide rate increase, the state did see a drop in the numbers of kids killed in motor vehicle accidents and drownings.

If you or someone you know are struggling with suicidal thoughts, call the national hotline at 800-273-TALK (8255).Ross Terrell

COVID Relief Financial Assistance Available For Foster Kids 

Foster kids ages 14 and up and people aging out of it have until Oct. 1 to access expanded financial assistance. Utah has received more than $2 million in COVID relief funding for the foster support program. So far, it’s only spent about $145,000. The money can be used to help with rent, food, transportation, technology and other basic needs. Because of the pandemic, people in the foster system up to the age of 27 can apply for assistance. After Oct. 1, the program will revert to its previous eligibility requirements. — Caroline Ballard

Utah Three-Day COVID Total Tops 4,000 Cases 

COVID-19 rates continue to surge in Utah. State health officials reported 4,213 new COVID cases Monday. That’s a three day total dating back to Friday. The weeklong average of new cases is up from last week at 1,545 cases per day. Other key numbers are approaching rates previously seen at the height of last winter’s peak. There are 562 people currently hospitalized with COVID and 91% of ICU beds are filled statewide. Another 16 people have died from the virus, three of them were between the ages of 25 and 44. — Caroline Ballard 

Region/Nation

President Joe Biden Making The Rounds In The Mountain West 

President Joe Biden flew into Idaho Monday as the first of several stops around the West to talk about wildfires, climate change and his infrastructure plan. In Boise, he visited the National Interagency Fire Center, a hub for agencies managing wildfires. He heard about the need for resources to fight and prepare for fires, and talked about bipartisan support for wildland firefighters. He’ll also be visiting California and Colorado during this visit. — Madelyn Beck, Mountain West News Bureau