Each Friday I compile a list that highlights five things you probably missed in the news that week and why you should care about them.
Here’s your list for the week of March 12:
1. Sheriff used $750K in prison foodservice money to buy beach house
Etowah County (Ala.) Sheriff Todd Entrekin took home more than $750,000 in money that was budgeted to feed prison inmates—and it’s not illegal. The money was used to purchase a $740,000 beach house, according to a report from NRP. I’m sure you’re asking yourself at this point how this could be possible. According to a Depression-era law, sheriffs in Alabama can “keep and retain” any unspent money on prison foodservice accounts. The sheriffs are allowed to keep the money as personal income. In the event there is a shortfall, the sheriff is personally liable for covering the shortfall. Sheriff Entrekin had this to say: "The law says it's a personal account and that's the way I've always done it."
2. Sodexo announces new schools, university head
Satya Menard has been promoted to global CEO of the school and universities division of Sodexo. He had been the CEO of service operations. Menard, who will be based in the US, has been with Sodexo for 20 years, most recently coordinating operations in food, facilities management, supply chain, and information services and technology.
3. Increased security following hospital cafeteria armed robbery
There will be an increased police presence inside the cafeteria at William P. Clements University Hospital on the campus of U.T. Southwestern in Texas following an armed robbery Tuesday night. Police said no one was hurt and no shots were fired, and they are unclear about whether the man took anything from the cafeteria.
Read more: Increased Security at UT Southwestern After Armed Robbery Inside Cafeteria
4. OK food bank to support student food needs in case of teacher walkout
Last month teachers across the entire state of West Virginia walked out. And that meant students who rely on school meals had to find other sources for food. The state stepped up. Districts, teachers, local community organizations and churches all helped feed students during the strike. Now, it seems students in another state, Oklahoma, might have the same issue if teachers walk out. The Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma is working on a coordinated effort to provide meals in case of school closures. That plan would include an increase in food truck sites and setting up other delivery methods.
Read more: Food bank working to support children if school closures occur
5. Study finds 20% of U Maryland students food insecure
One in five students at the University of Maryland are food insecure, a new study of nearly 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students has found. Those students who reported being food insecure also reported higher levels of stress and depression and were more likely to report negative impacts on their education, including withdrawing from classes. Students who were more likely to report being food insecure were first-generation college students, international students, students who live off campus, and racial or ethnic minority students.
Bonus: Vote for 2018 Menu Madness