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Hot on the job
Jul 21, 2023
Episode 971

Hot on the job

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Extreme heat is a hazard. Where's the Occupational Safety and Health Administration?

Record-breaking heat waves are becoming a serious job hazard for outdoor workers. Currently, there are almost no federal rules to protect workers from extreme heat. But that may be changing. We’ll also discuss New York City’s reversal in the way it treats asylum-seeking migrants. Plus, we’ll play a game of This or That with guest host Amy Scott.

Here’s everything we talked about today:

We want to hear what you’re reading this summer. If you’ve got a reading recommendation you’d like to share with fellow Smarties, email us at makemesmart@marketplace.org or leave us a voicemail at 508-U-B-SMART.

Make Me Smart July 21, 2023 Transcript

Note: Marketplace podcasts are meant to be heard, with emphasis, tone and audio elements a transcript can’t capture. Transcripts are generated using a combination of automated software and human transcribers, and may contain errors. Please check the corresponding audio before quoting it.

Kimberly Adams

I hear Jasper coming up the stairs. I think I have everything I’m supposed to mute it. So let’s do a show.

Amy Scott 

Hey, everybody, I’m Amy Scott. Welcome back to Make Me Smart where we make today make sense. It is Friday, July 21.

Kimberly Adams

Thank God it is Friday, really for sure it was a week. I’m Kimberly Adams. Thank you so much, everybody for joining us once again for Economics on Tap, our Friday happy hour. The YouTube livestream is up and running. I see you all are in there sharing your drinks, which is awesome. And I’m going to check in on the Discord in just a moment. But we are going to have some news today, we’re going to have a game and we’re going to have drinks. So Amy, what are you drinking?

Amy Scott

Yeah, well, I made something special because I got a nudge a couple of days ago, we’re now putting the our drinks in the newsletter ahead of time. So I was like, well, what am I gonna make? I have to plan ahead so I have a bottle of Luxardo maraschino liqueur from way back.

Kimberly Adams

Oh the liqueur, not just the cherries?

Amy Scott

Right when we did our our cherry blossom, our kind of ill-fated live stream cherry blossom party. And I was like, Well, I don’t know what else to do with it. So I looked up some recipes and I made myself this beautiful looking cherry margarita. Seemed summery. We’ll see how it tastes.

Kimberly Adams

Let’s do it.

Amy Scott

Oh, that’s nice. I think I’m gonna make it again. Yes, I think I will. How about you?

Kimberly Adams 

Speaking of flow, I’m I’m actually afraid of my drink today, because it has gin in it and gin is the devil. I usually..

Amy Scott

I know how you feel about June.

Kimberly Adams

I don’t mess with gin on a normal basis. But at my Fourth of July party, one of my good friends and her son brought me a bottle of homemade blackberry gin, and blackberries growing on my rooftop, along with some mint and some cucumber which all go together in a cocktail that I found online. And so I’ve got some blackberries from my garden, a cucumber from my garden and I mixed it all together. And it’s actually about the same color as yours. Oh, there’s a lot in there. Oh dear. It’s still going I don’t really know my portions.

Amy Scott 

A fresh pour, that’s classy.

Kimberly Adams

Yeah, we’ll see. I’m going, but I have my seltzer water here so that I can thin this out but let’s see how it is regular.

Amy Scott

Ooh, it looks pretty.

Kimberly Adams

It’s it’s it’s nice. It’s very herbal because it’s got mint, it’s got cucumber, it’s got blackberries. I am going to add a little seltzer water to it because I’m afraid. That would be an interesting show. But let’s see what uh, everyone in the chat is drinking. Steve has a ginger lime mule seltzer that looks like it’s non alcoholic. And I see that Bob has a Zinfiniti blend from Sonoma County. I do love a good Zin. So that’s exciting. Yeah, I love it. Everybody’s bringing it today. And you can all laugh at me as I tried to navigate my my drink. Amy, what’s your news?

Amy Scott 

All right. Well, you may have seen some news about this. This week, it’s been kind of unfolding, New York City is dealing with a huge influx of migrants seeking asylum from places mostly in South America or Central America crossing the U.S-Mexico border. In some cases, they’ve been put on buses by Republican governors in southern states and sent to New York for political protests. But more than 90,000 have arrived just since April 2022. And it’s created a huge strain on the city’s homeless shelters. And this week, Mayor Eric Adams has basically told people stop coming, we’re full, which is tricky in New York, because unlike other cities that are receiving a lot of these migrants, New York has a mandate, a right to shelter rule that basically says if someone shows up at a city shelter, you have to house them within 24 hours. And that goes back to 1981. And it’s one reason that New York City has a smaller unhoused population than many other large cities. But you know, even though dozens are, over 150 new shelters were opened as part of this kind of emergency response. In some cases, you know, hotels, jails, it’s just not enough space. And so the mayor is trying to roll back the right to shelter mandate in court. He announced this week that changes, some changes that would limit shelter for some migrants to 60 days, which isn’t very long. And in most cases, people need a lot more time to find housing, especially because undocumented immigrants aren’t don’t qualify for most housing assistance. So it’s really hard to get out of the shelter and find permanent housing. But I think kind of the thing that’s gotten the most backlash really is these bright yellow fliers that the city has said it’s going to distribute to, southern, to the southern border, basically saying, laying out all the reasons people shouldn’t come to New York City. It lists you know, the expensive housing, the fact that the city may not be able to provide shelter and says in quotes, please consider another city as you make your decision about where to settle in the US. And Bloomberg CityLab reported today that migrants are already being turned away from shelters and basically told we can’t help you. So that’s a real crisis.

Kimberly Adams

That’s rough. It’s like a lose lose situation for those folks, because they’re so often trafficked or lied to, or manipulated in some way when they are trying to cross the border. And then it’s just a bad situation, kind of no matter what once you get to the other side. So I’ll be very fascinated to see if his plans, Eric Adams is planned stand up in court, because he’s basically saying that the law does not apply to these folks. So right watching that for sure. Hmm, okay. Well, by the way, I see I see all of you in the chat, commenting on Jasper and being worried about whether or not he’s going to jump on my hair again. I’m gonna keep an eye on him.

Amy Scott 

He’s pretty innocent right now. Curios, curios, but innocent

Kimberly Adams

Oh, that’s how he always looks. But yeah, so my story is is also about vulnerable folks. It’s a piece in Axios. About, you know, the heatwave that many of us are experiencing and the fact that this is going to be probably the new normal, but also that while there are legal protections for, you know, being out in extreme conditions when it comes to cold in many places, you don’t have the same kind of legal protections when it comes to heat. And so folks are out here working in this heat on construction sites or, you know, doing deliveries or doing whatever that has you outside without air conditioning, often with little protection and there are a lot of heat related deaths that are happening. And then I’m reading from Axios here. “No federal law protects workers specifically from extreme heat” and “the Occupational Safety and Health Act which OSHA as we most of us know it as prescribes a general duty for employers to keep their work safe. It’s a broad provision that businesses could likely challenge in court.” And the Biden administration has said it’s going to add heat safety rules. And they made that announcement in 2021. But they’re not close to being done with those regulations. And then once those regulations come out, you can expect the inevitable legal challenges. And in the meantime, Texas, the Texas Legislature has actually approved a bill that would strip city’s authority to enforce local regulations that put sort of heat rules in place. And it, you know, this is going to be a an ongoing issue, because the heat is probably here to stay. And, you know, I’m really worried for folks, Sean Martin in the chat says, “having worked outdoors in 115 degree heat in full coveralls, hard hat and a respirator, I can vouch for the importance of breaks in the heat. I’m not happy about what they did to workers in Texas.” Ah, yeah, that’s rough.

Amy Scott 

Yeah you know, I’m sitting here sweating in my closet, because I’m in Baltimore. And this is the uninsulated, un-air conditioned part of the house and preparing for a reporting trip to Phoenix where, you know, it’s just been unrelenting. And last season of How We Survive, we focused on sea level rise, but part of my reporting led us to the first ever chief heat officer in a U.S city, in the city of Miami. And her job is basically to figure out how to cool off Miami, how to make it safer for workers how to regulate and you know, this, it’s here, as you said, it’s here, it’s too late really for for these regulations, we need to figure out how we’re going to keep people safe. Because it’s really deadly.

Kimberly Adams 

It is and, you know, we may end up having to take a page out of the books, book of you know, people living in the Middle East, or in some parts of Africa where a lot, you know, parts of Africa are in the Middle East, I’m not gonna get into that. But, um, you know, there are a lot of places where they just do more stuff in the evening, you know, you stay up late and businesses are open from like, four o’clock in the afternoon till midnight and then open from like six in the morning to 10. But they’re not open in the middle of the day because it is too hot to safely operate in. You know, your your cars aren’t safe to operate, cars overheat on the street, it’s it’s a bad situation. So yeah, that is. Oh, right. April, McCaffrey points out that for the sag AFTRA strikes, one of the studios trimmed the tree to take away the shade from the writers and actors striking. And you know, you’re putting them out in the heat. Yeah, yeah, there’s a lot of photos of it. That, you know, some of the shade trees where they were picketing, they trimmed back those limbs pretty severely, and I saw an arborist on Tiktok talking about how not only was it mean, but it was like the worst way to trim these trees for the health of the trees.

Amy Scott 

Yeah, why take it out on on not only the people but the trees. We need those trees. Oh man.

Kimberly Adams 

Yes, okay, we have finished the news and we’re going to take a quick break. And then when we come back, Drew Jostad is going to join us for the game not Half Full, Half Empty. Today we’re gonna play This or That and we’re gonna be right

Kimberly Adams 

See, the problem with gin is that you don’t taste it in the same way that you taste other kinds of alcohol. And so it’s like, I I’m aware that gin is in there. But since I can’t really taste it all that much, like,

Amy Scott 

Oh is that why it’s the devil? Is it like, it sneaks up on you?

Kimberly Adams

Sure, that’s why. Anyway, it’s time to play This or That. Drew Jostad is here and he is going to give us some topics to pick from, and we are going to tell you which of the two that we prefer. Okay, Drew, let’s do it.

Drew Jostad 

All right and it’s a special mid-summer edition of This or That. So to start off, are you an ice cream cone person or frozen yogurt person?

Amy Scott 

I am an ice cream person. I should be a frozen yogurt person. I love ice cream. But I have to say I’m not a sugar cone person. I like the plain cone that every place has a different name for it when I grew up,

Kimberly Adams

The waffle cone?

Amy Scott

No, like, it’s like, it looks like a piece of Styrofoam, that’s beige. Some people call it cake cone or there’s another name out. When I was growing up, it was just a plain cone. But that’s my jam. Oh, nice. Yeah. big scoop of ice cream on styrofoam.

Kimberly Adams

It looks like most people are saying cake cups or cake cones. So okay. Yeah, sure.

Amy Scott 

I don’t know how to order it. I just point “that one.”

Kimberly Adams

The yellowish one. Yes, I definitely prefer frozen yogurt or do you say frozen yogurt or frozen custard?

Drew Jostad

Yogurt, you can have whatever you want.

Amy Scott

Oh yeah because custard is a whole other… yeah

Kimberly Adams 

Yes. So because I’m from St. Louis, I have to default to frozen custard and I saw somebody shout out Ted Drewes, Kathy I see you, Ted Drewes frozen Custard in St. Louis. It’s a big thing for us. Because it’s frozen so solid that before they serve it to you, they actually, like it doesn’t have a lid on it and it’s in a cup. Before they serve it to you. They turn it upside down, which is like proof that it’s so thick and creamy, that it won’t fall out. And so they’ll call it like a concrete or something. It’s delicious. But,

Amy Scott 

Oh like the Dairy Queen Blizzard, don’t they do that?

Kimberly Adams

No they took that, I believe they took that out.

Amy Scott

Oh they did? Probably a lawsuit about that somewhere

Kimberly Adams

I feel like I feel like that was ours first. I don’t know if that’s true. I’m just gonna say it and probably I guess slander. Oh, but I like frozen custard. I, however, I’m also lactose intolerant. And so whether it’s frozen custard or ice cream, my body does not like it very much. And so I go with frozen yogurt or the lactose free ice creams that you can get in different places. And I see some folks in the chat. Margie is in the mood for sherbert. My dad loved rainbow sherbert and every time I even hear sherbert I think of my dad so yeah, nostalgia. Alright, what’s next?

Drew Jostad 

All right. Would you rather go to an outdoor summer movie or outdoor summer concert?

Kimberly Adams

In this heat?

Amy Scott 

Ooh, which part of the country? Yes. For me, it’s the mosquitoes, man. I do not like being outside in the summer in the evening because I get eaten alive. Which is really sad. If it’s a screened in theater. I would love it.

Kimberly Adams

Oh, assuming you have insect repellent?

Amy Scott 

Yeah, I know. It works a bit. Probably a concert. I’m gonna say concert. I find it hard to, it’s kind of distracting to watch a movie outside because there’s usually like people running around and kids talking and not you know, people aren’t sitting still watching the movie. And so, at a concert, you know, it’s loud enough that that’s fine. You don’t have to pay attention so closely.

Kimberly Adams 

It’s usually a movie that like you’ve seen before, right? It’s like a movie that’s like old or re-released or something like that. I definitely prefer the outdoor movie I love like sitting on the blanket. Having my own snacks and like just chilling. Concerts, I don’t know. I’m not a big like outdoor concert person that feels uncomfortable to me. I want to cheer to enjoy music. Or I’m going to be up and dancing. I want to be cool and dancing. And not like with, and I’m also I think like the pandemic still scares me in terms of outdoor concert and like people packed together I need to like just get over it but I’m not. So I’m gonna go with outdoor movie.

Drew Jostad 

Speaking of movies, for your summer blockbuster are you thinking Barbenheimer or Mission Impossible?

Amy Scott 

Kimberly, you go ahead, I got to think about this one.

Kimberly Adams

I’m going to say Barbenheimer. I just heard from a friend today is she’s like, “when do you want to go see Oppenheimer?” And we’re going to set that up, I think next week. I will probably also see the Barbie movie. I don’t know if I’m gonna see them both on the same day. But I definitely want to see Oppenheimer for sure. I don’t know, Mission Impossible. I dig the stunts, but I feel like Tom Cruise is kind of the same person in every single movie he’s ever been in. So, yeah, like,

Amy Scott

Tom Cruise. Yeah, you know, I have to admit, I’ve never seen any of the Mission Impossible movies. How many have there been now? This is like number 12 or something? I’m sure the chat will tell us. Yeah, tell us chat. And I don’t see why I should break that streak. I definitely want to see both Oppenheimer and the Barbie movie. My mentor in grad school, John Else,  actually made a documentary about Robert Oppenheimer and the day after Trinity. And so I’m really interested to see the sort of fiction version of this story. And Barbie just looks hilarious. I was a huge Barbie kid. I confess, so I want to see it.

Kimberly Adams

I was, I took the metro home between hosting the PM show and coming home to scramble to make my cocktail and sit here. And there are all of these people obviously heading to the Barbie movie in their plastic world gear and it was fun to see. Yeah, it was fun. All right. Is this the last one? Do we have a poll?

Drew Jostad 

I got two more. Two more. Okay. All right. This one might be hard on Kimberly, I don’t know. I’m gonna make her pick between sci-fi or fantasy.

Amy Scott 

I thought it was going to involve gin.

Kimberly Adams

Fantasy, actually, because sci-fi can sometimes cut a little too close to home. And the whole point yes, escapism. Where as fantasy when you throw in the magic and the wizards and the dragons and the fairies and all those things, you know, unless I really want to stretch my imagination in terms of what I believe is operating in this world. I can kind of check out but that is a tough one. The TV I’m watching right now is mostly fantasy. The books that I’m reading right now are mostly sci-fi. But I bounced back and forth between the two. So that was a tough one. Mean.

Amy Scott 

That was hard on her. I think I’m gonna go with sci-fi. I actually am not a huge fan of either genre, to be honest. Like Kimberley said, sometimes sci fi just it’s like,

Kimberly Adams

I feel like you haven’t read the right sci-fi and fantasy. If that is the case.

Amy Scott 

Oh, probably. I could probably use your recommendation. Last sci fi book I read was Octavia Butler. And I loved it. But it was I needed like a year off from scary.

Kimberly Adams

See, and that’s the thing about some sci fi because Octavia Butler, you can read her work now. And it’s basically like, oh, that’s outside. Great.

Amy Scott 

Today. Exactly. Except for the animals. It’s pretty much everything that’s happening right now. Yeah.

Kimberly Adams

I mean as far as we know. Yes. Yes.

Amy Scott 

As far as we know, yeah. But, I’ll take your recs for sure. I’m always looking for something escapist to read because as Kimberly knows, journalists read a lot of upsetting nonfiction.

Kimberly Adams

“Dragonriders of Pern,” although the debate on that one is do you want to read the Dragonriders of Pern series chronologically in the order in which Anne McCaffrey and later Todd McCaffrey wrote them, or do you want to read them…

Amy Scott

We’ll assume I can read one book

Drew Jostad 

Let’s not go crazy

Amy Scott 

I mean, for now.

Kimberly Adams

Let me think more

Amy Scott

Right Drew, I love that I’m just getting in for the experience

Drew Jostad 

Let me just get my feet wet with this.

Amy Scott 

I need to go on vacation.

Kimberly Adams 

Yes. I’m sure the chat is gonna have quite a few recommendations for sort of, you know what you would enjoy Amy in terms of fantasy. You would probably like either the book “Eragon” or The Discovery of the, “The Discovery of Witches.” You would like those books, okay.

Amy Scott 

Yeah. All right. Taking notes. Thank you.

Kimberly Adams 

Okay, good stuff. All right. Now we have the poll. Now. I have the poll. Those of you in the YouTube livestream, who are in the chat, get ready to vote and I am excited to see what the next one is.

Drew Jostad 

This is going out to the soccer audience out there you more excited for tonight’s you Team USA versus Vietnam from the World Cup or Lionel Messi’s MLS debut with Inter.

Amy Scott 

Oh my God, that’s mean.

Kimberly Adams

No contest, no contest. Oh it’s a contest for you? Women’s Women’s World Cup US national team for sure. Have you seen the Megan Rapinoe ad?

Amy Scott 

Yes Megan Rapinoe. Yes. It is amazing.

Kimberly Adams 

Oh it’s Rapinoe? Sorry. Oh I’m sorry, I didn’t even let people vote. I don’t care.

Amy Scott

Oh are we supposed to let people vote?

Kimberly Adams

I was, but gin.. I’m gonna blame it on the gin. It’s the devil.

Amy Scott 

So should I let people vote before I weigh in?

Kimberly Adams

Yes, yes. And I love your fan. I have a fan here somewhere.

Amy Scott 

I know. It’s an envelope. I found an envelope here in the closet. It’s so hot. I’m not complaining though. Because I’m not working outside wearing all kinds of gear. Just in my closet.

Kimberly Adams

I got a Pride fan from the hotel. I was traveling, I got a Pride fan at the hotel. It’s like very efficient, and it’s got a rainbow on it. But it’s somewhere around here. Any who. Let’s see we’ve got 115 votes so far. Let’s see. “Gin is the devil.” Yes, it is. Lots of people. At least one person likes a Discovery of Witches. I’m hearing quite a few people in favor of “Dragonriders of Pern.” Someone else recommends the “King Killer Chronicles” which I haven’t seen. A couple recommendations for “Dune”

Amy Scott 

Oh, yeah.

Kimberly Adams

Yeah, “Dune.” So I kind of feel about “Dune” the way I feel about what’s it? “Game of Thrones,” right? It’s very, very dense. First of all, and you know, I’m sure I’ll get yelled at. I don’t think that the “Game of Thrones” were terribly well written, personally, although lots of people love them. And I did enjoy the show up until the last season. But “Dune” is is is well written, but very, very dense. And you got to like pay attention to it. So I don’t know that that’s your entry point into the sci-fo realm. Personally.

Amy Scott 

Yeah, you know, I actually have to read or at least rewatch the original “Dune” for work. We’re talking about water in the desert. And it’s so you know, for research, I will consume some “Dune” this summer.

Kimberly Adams

Okay. Well, I’ll be very cur- then you don’t even need my recommendation. If you’re going to be, are you going to read it or are you going to watch it?

Amy Scott 

You know, at the rate I’m going on current books, probably going to watch it.

Kimberly Adams

Okay. You could also do the audio book because…

Amy Scott

You don’t skim right? It’s hard to skim “Dune”.

Kimberly Adams

Yeah, it’s not one for skimming. Okay

Amy Scott 

So where are people on this soccer question?

Kimberly Adams

Let’s go ahead and close the poll. close the poll. We have 131 votes, let’s do it. Doo, doo doo doo doo doo doo doo doo, I’m looking

Amy Scott 

Do I get to say what I feel now or wait? I’ve forgotten…

Kimberly Adams 

Yes You can say, I forgot. Or I can tell you the answer. That’s okay. So Team USA versus Vietnam. 87%, the correct answer. Messi’s MLS debut 12%. Okay, what are your feelings? Yes.

Amy Scott 

Okay. Well, yes, I mean, the World Cup is is huge. Way more culturally significant in the long run then Messi joining Major League Soccer in the U.S but I’m also really excited to see that I bought tickets to see D.C. United play Inter Miami after it was announced that he was joining but before they announced when he would be starting, so we along with a lot of other fans who had overpaid for their tickets, enjoyed a very exciting, I think it was one-one tie sans Messi. But it was such a fun game. The D.C. United fans are awesome. We had such a good time. I am excited for what he brings to soccer just the excitement in the US because I come from a family, a longtime loving soccer loving family, I don’t know how else to say that. I played, my husband played, his dad played in college and we just we love it and my kids play and and you know you’ve probably, if you’ve been listening to the show, when I guest-host, soccer frequently comes up so we’re just excited about all things soccer, definitely staying up to watch the game tonight. Very excited. Go USA.

Kimberly Adams

Yes, I’m excited. I want to stay up as well. But I also have to be up early tomorrow to go on a little hiking-camping trip with te friends. I don’t know if I’m gonna, I’m gonna make it. Yes, I’m excited about it. But I’m enjoying everybody in the chat agreeing with me on “Game of Thrones,” the books not being great. Thank you for the validation. I appreciate that. I’ve had people yelled at me for that, but I believe it in my soul. All right. Thank you everybody. Yes, yes. All right.

Amy Scott 

I like This or That. It’s a fun game.

Kimberly Adams

Yeah, it’s fun. Yeah. Yeah, we’re trying to mix it up a bit. And again, if anybody listening has a recommendation for a game you’d like to hear us try out on a Friday happy hours or that you want to play in the chat, let us know we’re definitely open to it. And that’s the end of our game. Okay, Kai and I are going to be back next week. And in the meantime, as you know, we’ve already started, we are still taking your summer reading recommendations. So if you’re reading something that is making you smarter or just making you happy, whether it be fiction or nonfiction, or making you think real hard, perhaps you can send that to us. We are at makemesmart@marketplace.org. You can also leave us a voicemail at 508-U-B-SMART and I’d love your sci-fi and fantasy recommendations in particular.

Amy Scott 

Make me smart is produced by Courtney Bergsieker. Today’s episode was engineered by Jayk Cherry. Our intern is Niloufar Shahbandi and Drew Jostad wrote the theme music for our Friday game and of course hosted the game.

Kimberly Adams

And does such a good job at it. The team behind our Friday game is Emily Macune and Antoinette Brock. Marissa Cabrera is our wonderful senior producer. And Bridget Bodnar is the director of podcasts. Francesca Levy is the executive director of Digital and On Demand. We like to mix it up. She has multiple titles we give her them all. All of them.

Amy Scott 

Many hats.

Kimberly Adams

Many hats and some fascinators to why not?

Amy Scott

Cheers, Kimberly.

Kimberly Adams

Cheers

Amy Scott 

Fascinators, always wanted to own one of those.

Kimberly Adams

Oh, I have some you can borrow.

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