KUNM

Ed Williams

Public Health New Mexico Reporter

Ed Williams came to KUNM in 2014 by way of Carbondale, Colorado, where he worked as a public radio reporter covering environmental issues. Originally from Austin, Texas, Ed has reported on environmental, social justice, immigration and Native American issues in the U.S. and Latin America for the Austin American-Statesman, Z Magazine, NPR’s Latino USA and others. In his spare time, look for Ed riding his mountain bike in the Sandias or sparring on the jiu-jitsu mat.

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons by cliff1066™

More than 50,000 people in the U.S. died because of an opioid overdose last year, which is an all-time high.

The opioid epidemic was the subject of Congress’s Joint Economic Committee hearing last week. New Mexico Senator Martin Heinrich, a Democrat, is the ranking member of that committee. He spoke with KUNM about the hearing and the prospects for behavioral health in the Republican health care replacement bill. 

Two civil rights groups are taking New Mexico’s public education system to court. They say the state doesn’t fund education well enough, doesn’t provide the right programming and is violating some students’ rights.

The trial started Monday in Santa Fe. 

Thaliesin via Pixabay / Creative Commons License

The state spent almost half its 2015 child behavioral health dollars on expensive outpatient programs that have not been shown to be effective, according to a report presented to lawmakers Wednesday.

Ed Williams

Over two decades ago, toxic dry cleaning chemicals seeped into the groundwater from a chemical distribution company’s warehouse near downtown Albuquerque. Today the plume spreads from Laun-Dry Supply Company about a mile and a half eastward towards I-25.

After a long investigation, the New Mexico Environment Department is poised to move forward with a full-scale cleanup of the chemical plume.

Ed Williams

A drug that can reverse a heroin overdose is set to become more widely available in New Mexico. It’s the latest attempt to fight the opioid epidemic here—but even as naloxone becomes more available, other addiction and treatment services are struggling.

DarkoStojanovic via Pixabay / creative commons license

KUNM Call In Show 5/11 8a: Call 1-877-899-5866. With Republican plans to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act moving through congress, the future of healthcare in New Mexico is facing a lot of uncertainty. We’ll look at what changing the healthcare law could mean for New Mexicans, and for our state’s Medicaid system and insurance markets.

Bjoertvedt / Creative Commons License via Wikimedia Commons

Republican efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act passed a major hurdle Thursday after the House of Representatives voted for a new health law, the American Healthcare Act. KUNM’s Chris Boros spoke with Ed Williams of the Public Health New Mexico project about reactions in New Mexico.

Ed Williams

New Mexico will receive $4.8 million in federal dollars for opioid treatment and prevention this year. The money comes from the 21st Century Cures Act, a bill signed by President Obama in December that gives states new funding to fight the opioid epidemic. 

Ed Williams

Honstein Oil Company’s gasoline distribution plant is located in the middle of a low-income Albuquerque neighborhood, and just a few blocks from an elementary school. Environmental justice groups have been asking the city to revoke the plant’s permit for years. The city dismissed the group’s appeal Wednesday. 

Walt Stoneburner via Flickr (cropped) / Creative Commons License

One of the bills that Governor Susana Martinez vetoed last week would have set up a Medicaid-funded home visiting program for new parents. The move has disappointed some doctors and child advocates.

Asaavedra32 via Wikimedia / Creative Commons License

This week Attorney General Jeff Sessions said he would withhold federal grants to cities that don’t follow federal rules on immigration enforcement. Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales has been an outspoken critic of the Trump Administration’s stance on immigration. He says he won’t be changing the city’s openly immigrant-friendly policies.

Borderlands Under Trump

Feb 27, 2017
Marisa Demarco

KUNM Call In Show 3/2 8a: Call now toll-free 1-877-899-5866. President Trump has issued executive orders that beef up immigration enforcement, and that also affect refugees and travelers from certain majority-Muslim countries. Is toughening rules on immigrants and refugees a good thing for New Mexico? What are the implications of these rules, and how are local elected officials responding? 

Bjoertvedt / Creative Commons License via Wikimedia Commons

Republicans unveiled a plan to repeal the Affordable Care Act last week. U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich has been a vocal critic of repealing the healthcare law. He spoke with KUNM's Ed Williams about what changes to the ACA could mean for this state. 

Groupuscule / creative commons license via Wikimedia

Cities across the country have reported an uptick in federal immigration raids. On Wednesday Immigration and Customs Enforcement arrested undocumented immigrants in Las Cruces.

Sarah Silva of the immigrant rights group NM Café has been leading protests against the ICE operations in Doña Ana County. She spoke with KUNM about the immigration raids there. 

Ed Williams

A national bus tour protesting Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act is passing through New Mexico. The Save My Care campaign held a rally in Albuquerque Wednesday.

Ed Williams

The New Mexico Senate approved a bill Monday that provides more legal protection to people calling 911 to report a drug overdose. Lawmakers hope the bill will encourage more people to call for help.

Ed Williams

When someone addicted to heroin or prescription wants to quit, the first step is to find a detox center where they can safely go through withdrawals from the drug, but people in northern New Mexico who are trying to get help often can’t find it.

Ed Williams / KUNM

When a public health crisis gets out of control, it can overwhelm law enforcement agencies. That’s what’s happened with the Española Police Department as it deals with a decades-old opioid epidemic and all the crime that goes with it. 

Española High School Students Hunger For Respect, Support

Jan 31, 2017
Ed Williams / KUNM

When kids are at high risk for addiction, a good public school system can be one of the most effective ways to prevent drug use. On the other hand, dysfunctional schools can make drug use by students more likely.

In Española public schools, teacher turnover and problems with the administration have created a lot of instability for students. But students at Española Valley High School say it’s time to focus on what’s good about their school.

Ed Williams/KUNM

Research shows early childhood education is one of the most effective ways to prevent drug use later in life. That’s especially important in Rio Arriba County, where an opioid epidemic has been raging for decades. 

Creative Commons / Pixabay

Española  has had one of the highest rates of heroin addiction in the country for decades. It’s a public health crisis that can create particular challenges for pregnant moms and the doctors that treat them.  

Rashad Mahmood

A neighborhood association and an environmental justice group say a gasoline distribution plant is polluting the air in a low-income area of Albuquerque. The city will hold a hearing on the plant Wednesday.

Ed Williams

Rio Arriba County has the country’s highest rate of opioid overdose. That’s partly because a severe shortage of funding for detox and recovery programs has made it almost impossible for people to get life-saving help with their addictions.

Now Congress has passed a broad health measure that includes $1 billion for addiction treatment and prevention services.

KUNM spoke with Senator Martin Heinrich, who voted for the 21st Century Cures Act this week. 

Ed Williams

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill Wednesday that could bring new money to fight the nation’s opioid epidemic. It’s a measure that could have big impacts in New Mexico.

Ed Williams

The U.S. Senate passed a bill Tuesday to give rural patients better access to high-quality medical care using a program developed at UNM.

Ed Williams/KUNM

Demonstrators are preparing for winter at their camp in North Dakota, aiming to stop a pipeline that would carry crude oil under the Missouri River from being built. Protesters marched in solidarity Albuquerque on Tuesday, Nov. 15, as part of a national day of action against the pipeline.

Ed Williams/KUNM

New Mexico Republicans celebrated Donald Trump’s victory at the Albuquerque Convention Center Tuesday. The mood at the Republican election night watch party went from cautiously optimistic to elated as Donald Trump’s upset of Hillary Clinton took shape.

The opioid epidemic is a national crisis, and in Northern New Mexico it’s a problem that’s been around for decades.

For the latest in our Voices Behind the Vote series, KUNM visited the home of an addiction counselor in Rio Arriba County to hear about her thoughts on substance abuse and the presidential race.

Ed Williams

Sexual assault, gender equality and women’s reproductive rights have taken center stage this election season, with controversial comments by Donald Trump galvanizing some voters’ support for Hillary Clinton.

KUNM met with one of those voters at a restaurant in Santa Fe to find out why she’s supporting the Democratic presidential ticket.

Ed Williams

Voters in Bernalillo County are gearing up to elect a new commissioner in next week’s general election.

Republican Patricia Paiz is squaring off against Democrat Steven Michael Quezada to take over as commissioner for District 2—an area that includes the South Valley and West Mesa.

The race could shape the county’s policies on industrial pollution and community health.

Pages