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Debate preview; NOPD officer shortage; teaching financial literacy in schools

Most New Orleanians are well aware of the city’s police officer shortage — which has led to long wait times and financial consequences. The city is short roughly 500 officers, about a third of its ideal force, according to multiple reports.

The NOLA Coalition, an organization consisting of hundreds of local nonprofits, civic organizations and businesses, has been collecting data on the officer shortage and looking into ways to create a less violent city. Michael Hecht, the coalition’s CEO, joins us along with Jeff Asher, co-founder of AH Datalytics, an organization that’s been researching the main causes and consequences of the officer shortage.

Back in 2019, Louisiana’s legislature mandated that personal financial management be taught in public high schools, including lessons on borrowing, loan repayment and defaulting. It didn’t sound like much fun — and based on students’ responses, it wasn’t.

Enter three University of New Orleans educators armed with a $2 million dollar grant and a desire to ensure high school students learn financial literacy. One of those educators, Chris Surprenant, a professor of ethics, strategy and public policy, joins us to discuss the new Dollars to Dreams program, which aims to help students reach financial goals in an engaging way.

But first, it’s Thursday, which means it’s time to catch up on this week in politics with The Times-Picayune | The Advocate's editorial director and columnist, Stephanie Grace. We preview the upcoming gubernatorial debate — which will include the race’s presumed frontrunner Republican Attorney General Jeff Landry for the first time — and discuss other key elections in the state.

Today’s episode of Louisiana Considered was hosted by Bob Pavlovich. Our managing producer is Alana Schreiber and our assistant producer is Aubry Procell. Our engineer is Garrett Pittman. 

You can listen to Louisiana Considered Monday through Friday at 12 and 7:30 p.m. It’s available on Spotify, Google Play and wherever you get your podcasts. 

Louisiana Considered wants to hear from you! Please fill out our pitch line to let us know what kinds of story ideas you have for our show. And while you’re at it, fill out our listener survey! We want to keep bringing you the kinds of conversations you’d like to listen to.

Louisiana Considered is made possible with support from our listeners. Thank you!

Bob Pavlovich, a long-time fill-in host for New Orleans Public Radio, joined the station full-time in 2023. He hosts "All Things Considered" and "Louisiana Considered" on Thursdays.
Alana Schreiber is the managing producer for the live daily news program, Louisiana Considered. She comes to WWNO from KUNC in Northern Colorado, where she worked as a radio producer for the daily news magazine, Colorado Edition. She has previously interned for Minnesota Public Radio in St. Paul and The Documentary Group in New York City.