Smart Talk Monday; Redistricting legislation; PIAA looks to salvage fall sports; Keeping kids “safe and secure”

Next year, lawmakers will use the information obtained in the 2020 census to draw new congressional maps. Pennsylvania state House and Senate maps are determined differently; drawn by a five-member legislative commission comprised of both political parties.

Many argue that the current system allows for gerrymandering because members bring their own biases to bear in the process, and thereby favoring their party.

Republican state representative Wendi Thomas, of Bucks County introduced redistricting reform legislation that focuses on the rules for redistricting, rather than who is commissioned to draw the maps.

The legislation has received support from grassroots voting advocates, and members of both parties. Representative Thomas appears on Smart Talk to discuss details and where the legislation stands.

Governor Tom Wolf recently released guidance for sports in Pennsylvania, recommending that youth school sports postpone athletics until at least January 2021.

The Pennsylvania school sports governing body (PIAA) responded by delaying their decision and requesting an audience with the Governor’s office.

PIAA Associate Executive Director Melissa Nash Mertz joins Smart Talk to discuss the possibility of a “path forward” for fall sports.

At young ages, kids are exposed to adult realities and issues through the media and popular culture. Many parents and caregivers struggle to talk about some of these difficult topics.

One place to start is with a new web resource by the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR), called

Joining Smart Talk to share details are Jackie Strohm, Prevention & Resource Coordinator for the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) and project lead, along with Lexi Livelsberger, former PCAR team member who uses the resources with her two children.