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Tuesday AM headlines: Utah part of multi-state product recalls over listeria outbreak

A block of soft cheese with a wedge taken out and set aside
U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Millcreek City Council unanimously calls for Natalie Cline’s resignation

The Millcreek City Council unanimously passed a resolution Monay night calling for the resignation of State School Board member Natalie Cline following controversial social media comments.

Cline posted a photo on social media last week of a high school athlete and publicly questioned if she was transgender. Before Cline deleted the post, the comment section was reportedly flooded with transphobic comments, some of which led to worry over the safety of the student.

Cline has been formally reprimanded by the State School Board, but the resolution says this is not enough, especially because this was not the first time Cline has made controversial statements about gender, sexuality, public schools and teachers.

Utah Democrats and the Granite School District have also called for Cline’s resignation over the incident.

Clergy reporting bill unanimously passes in committee, sent to Utah House

A bill giving legal protection to clergy members who voluntarily report ongoing child abuse or neglect cleared a Utah legislative committee with unanimous support on Friday.

The clergy-penitent privilege has been highly divisive, as several faiths discourage or don’t allow clergy members to report abuse or neglect they learn about through confession.

H.B. 432 is a compromise on that issue. It gives faith leaders the option to report abuse or neglect if they believe it’s ongoing, even if they learn about it during confession or a similar religious practice. The reporter would also have legal protection if they voluntarily report.

Though Utah faith groups have historically been one of the most vocal critics of clergy reporting bills, this bill has not seen opposition from them.

It passed unanimously in committee and now heads to the full House for further discussion.

Utah included in multi-state product recalls over listeria outbreak

Utah is part of a multi-state recall on foods sold in stores like Costco and Trader Joe’s linked to a listeria outbreak.

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), listeria is a harmful bacterium that can be found in refrigerated, ready-to-eat foods and, when eaten, may cause listeriosis, an illness that is especially dangerous to pregnant women and unborn children.

The FDA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have linked the outbreak to queso fresco and cotija cheeses manufactured by Rio Lopez Foods, Inc., which is based in California.

There have been two deaths and more than 20 hospitalizations reported across the country connected to the outbreak. No cases have been reported in Utah so far, but many of the products were sold at Utah stores.

The following products were sold in Utah and may be contaminated. The FDA says to dispose of any of these products immediately.

  • Rojos Black Bean 7-Layer Dip (Costco) 
  • Dole salad kits 
  • Albertsons Ready Meals and taco kits 
  • Amazon Kitchen chicken chile verde burrito 
  • Fresh & Ready Torta Sandwiches 
  • Fresh Creative Foods products, specifically cremas, cilantro cotija dressing, poblano Caesar dressing and cilantro dressing (Costco, Trader Joe’s, Albertsons) 

You can find a comprehensive list of all recalled products across the nation here.

Symptoms of listeria can take a few days or even weeks to appear. They include fever, chills, diarrhea, stiff neck, confusion and loss of balance. The FDA recommends contacting a medical professional if you develop symptoms.

Duck is a general reporter and weekend announcer at UPR, and is studying broadcast journalism and disability studies at USU. They grew up in northern Colorado before moving to Logan in 2018, so the Rocky Mountain life is all they know. Free time is generally spent with their dog, Monty, listening to podcasts, reading or wishing they could be outside more.