“The overarching theme is the human spirit. This is a specific story of the dignity of people who turned trials and tribulations and tragedy into triumph.”

– Hannibal Johnson, lead curator for the Race Massacre Centennial Commission, on the plans for the new Greenwood History Center in Tulsa [Tulsa World]

“But I think if it’s a road or a bridge or an Air Force base, we’re not asking that question. For whatever reason, we have to ask it about health care.”

– Chuck Spicer, President and CEO of OU Medicine, on legislators concerns that the federal government will pull back the matching money for Medicaid expansion [Public Radio Tulsa]

“Providing this feedback will help incentivize positive behavior and program participation if individuals know these factors can actually make a difference in our decision-making process.”

– Adam Luck, a member of the Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board, on the Board’s new practice of providing explanations for parole denials [CNHI]

“Oklahomans are paying for Medicaid expansion in 36 other states and Washington, D.C., but not getting to take advantage of it because of political obstinacy. As a result, we are poorer, sicker and less able to move ahead.”

– The Tulsa World editorial board, commenting on Census numbers showing that Oklahoma has the second highest uninsured rate in the country [Tulsa World]

“If we do this right, we can change not just our kids, but this community. Mental health is an issue in this community and to say it’s a priority in the district, that means 10 years down the road, 20 years down the road, we have a healthier community. It’s almost overwhelming to think the long-term impact this could make.”

– Teri Bell, executive director of student support services for Oklahoma City Public Schools, on the new programs to address student trauma in the district [The Oklahoman]

“If the data don’t support it, Gary Cox doesn’t do it. The fact is that health outcomes are based on determinants that we haven’t tracked in Oklahoma.”

– Scott Mitchell, a board member of the Oklahoma City-County Health Department, the appointment of Gary Cox to lead the State Department of Health [NonDoc]

“There are, of course, the stark realities of poverty, child hunger, domestic strife and more. The world outside the classroom has an undeniable impact on the world inside the classroom.”

– State Superintendent Joy Hoffmeister speaking on Capitol Hill about student trauma [The Oklahoman]

At the end of the day, there are Oklahoma kids who are without their mother. There is a woman who is serving even more of an already unjust sentence, and we’re only setting her up to have to pay more fines and fees for a longer time.”

– Nicole McAfee, director of advocacy for the ACLU of Oklahoma, on the re-arrest of Patricia Spottedcrow earlier this week despite no new charges of illegal activity [Tulsa World]

“We want humane treatment for not only those detained in the jail, but for those that work there, too.”

– Tricia Everest, Chairwoman of the Oklahoma County Jail Trust, on plans for the trust to take over operations of the Oklahoma County jail. Current employees challenged members of the trust at a public meeting on Monday [Source: The Oklahoman]

 

“I do think the result of it is inmates really have a sense of hope, and you think about hope and how important that is to the rehabilitation of people and the mental health of people. It’s a powerful force for good.”

– Pardon and Parole Board Executive Director Steven Bickley, on the recent surge in the approval of commutation and parole applications [Tulsa World]