UCLA in the News lists selected mentions of UCLA in the world’s news media. Some articles may require registration or a subscription. See more UCLA in the News.

TV better reflecting diversity of U.S., but still work to be done | Associated Press

Television fare that reflects the nation’s increasing racial and ethnic diversity is finding favor with industry gatekeepers and viewers, according to a study of the 2019–20 TV season released Tuesday. Despite the pandemic that stymied Hollywood production, there were varying measures of growth in the hiring of people of color — and women — in on- and off-camera jobs, researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, said in the report. (UCLA’s Darnell Hunt and Ana-Christina Ramón are quoted. Also: Los Angeles Times, Forbes, Hollywood Reporter and Deadline.)

Extreme weather — drought and rain — in California | New York Times

And by the end of the century, [rapid weather shifts are] expected to increase in frequency by 25 percent in Northern California and to double in Southern California, the study found. As Daniel Swain, a climate scientist at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the study’s lead author, said on Twitter this week: “It is worth noting that this exact situation — an extremely strong atmospheric river bringing brief period of record rainfall in midst of severe and temperature-amplified drought — is what we expect to see in California with #ClimateChange.” (Swain is also quoted by Los Angeles Times, NBC News, the Fresno Bee and the Guardian.)

Weather whiplash: Downpours and drought in California | Guardian

“This storm should put a definitive end on the wildfire season in northern California,” said Park Williams, a climate scientist at the University of California, Los Angeles. In southern California, which didn’t get drenched to the same degree, the picture isn’t as clear. But it is hopeful. “I think it’s probably still too early to rule out the possibility of [a southern California] November wildfire, should the next two to three weeks be hot and dry and followed by a strong Santa Ana event,” Williams continued.

Should young children have to wear face masks? | BBC

The good news is that mask-wearing has been linked to lower rates of COVID-19 in schools … “Masks provide an additional layer of protection against COVID-19 and have been shown to decrease the risk of getting the disease,” says Annabelle de St. Maurice, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of California, Los Angeles. 

Halloween costumes and cultural appropriation | USA Today

Shannon Speed, director of the American Indian Studies Center at UCLA and member of the Chickasaw Nation of Oklahoma, said rather than dressing up, people should respect and engage with communities instead, whether that be learning about their interest or needs as a community. “There’s no reason to take it for yourself,” she said.

Has COVID changed cities forever? Probably not | Forbes

[Mayor] Garcetti noted L.A., like other cities, has recaptured some street space from cars, converting it to dining and other outdoor activity. UCLA Chancellor Gene Block said research is now finding “social scarring” from pandemic fears, which is “changing people’s behavior and how they feel about density.”

Breastfeeding may help mothers’ brains | City News Service

Women over age 50 who breastfed their babies performed better on cognitive tests than women who never breastfed, according to a study led by researchers at UCLA Health. “While many studies have found that breastfeeding improves a child’s long-term health and well-being, our study is one of very few that has looked at the long-term health effects for women who had breastfed their babies,” Molly Fox, lead author of the study and an assistant professor in the UCLA Department of Anthropology and the Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences, said in a statement. (Also: KABC-TV.)

U.S. lags behind other countries in parental leave | NBC News

The U.S. is one of just eight countries without national paid maternity leave. Even if Democrats were to settle on four weeks of paid parental leave, the U.S. would still lag numerous other countries. The global average for paid maternity leave is 29 weeks, and it is 16 weeks for paid paternity leave, according to data from the World Policy Analysis Center at UCLA.

Supply chain issues and holiday shopping | Sacramento Bee

Spot shortages could surface of various items, such as certain toys. Prices will probably be noticeably higher than last year … No need for alarm, say the experts. “The world is ending? Not quite. We still have products in the pipeline,” said Christopher Tang, faculty director of the UCLA Center for Global Management. “Consumers need to calm down.”

Congress hears about moderation of social media content | Forbes

Even in those advanced discussions with Facebook and Twitter, “it’s been frustrating because the questions have been so bad,” says Sarah Roberts, a UCLA professor and author of “Behind the Screen” Content Moderation in the Shadows of Social Media.” She holds out little hope for a markedly better showing on Tuesday. “They get so confused about these platforms, and it really muddies the water of these proceedings and makes them have less impact.”

Communities of color suffer from environmental inequities | KABC-TV

The Justice40 Initiative, a coalition that aims to help the Biden administration fulfill its promise of directing 40% of climate and clean infrastructure investments to historically marginalized communities … The UCLA Luskin Center for Innovation released the “Making Justice40 a Reality” report. It urges government leaders to follow three principles in its action plans: (1) ensure they are justice-driven, (2) community-powered from the bottom up and (3) that change is accountable by institutionalizing policies that center on justice and equity.

How some Facebook users spread toxic politics | Politico

“Facebook has completely lost control over the ways in which its platform has sort of pushed content that is not only not credible but also outrageous and at times extremely divisive,” said Ramesh Srinivasan, director of the Center for Global Digital Cultures at UCLA.

CDC guidelines for Halloween trick-or-treating | Parents

So what can parents expect for Halloween 2021? For starters, “All of the guidelines suggested for day-to-day prevention of the spread of coronavirus are still in effect: social distancing, wear a mask, and proper hand-washing hygiene,” says Anne Rimoin, Ph.D., professor of epidemiology at UCLA Fielding School of Public Health and expert on emerging infections and global health.

Will new UC Merced health program lead to more Latino doctors? | Sacramento Bee

Meanwhile, Latinos in the state account for 39% of the state population, but make up just 11.6% of the state’s medical school graduates, according to a 2020 analysis by UCLA … “To have a physician who speaks the language that they speak, or someone who is within your same ethnicity or racial group, could definitely help in the type of care and trust that these patients have in the healthcare system,” said Arturo Vargas Bustamante, an associate professor at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health.

Autism: Serotonin shapes social memory signals | Spectrum

The results reveal a new mechanism by which serotonin shapes social function and suggest that the chemical messenger’s effect may vary by brain region. “It is a tour-de-force study,” says Weizhe Hong, associate professor of neurobiology and biological chemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles, who was not involved in the work.

Do COVID vaccine incentives work? | Marketplace Morning Report

Vaccine-averse people are not receptive to financial incentives to get vaccinated. That’s according to a new working paper from USC and UCLA researchers this week. Unvaccinated people were randomly offered various forms of encouragement, including money. But researchers say none of those tactics increased overall vaccination rates among study participants.