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Short takes on the news

Published April 13, 2013 1:01 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Be your own boss • Employed Utah women earn less compared with men than do other American women. That disparity could be part of the reason for a surge in the number of women who've gone into business for themselves. Utah is ranked seventh nationally in the number of woman-owned businesses added in the past 16 years, increasing by 157 percent and putting women-owned businesses fifth in the nation in growth. The healthy number of companies owned and run by women — 72,800 at last count — means jobs for 58,300 people and $13 billion in sales. Best of all, women who work for themselves have more control over their schedules and their working lives and are less at the mercy of employers and bosses.

Be more honest • It's unconscionable that the University of Utah and other universities conducted research on premature babies without disclosing to their parents the level of risk to the infants. The 1,300 babies were given varying amounts of oxygen, even though previous research had shown that low oxygen could cause death and higher levels could lead to eye damage. The watchdog Public Citizen rightly demanded an apology from the National Institutes of Health, which funded the study. The university researchers should also make amends for the lack of disclosure in getting parents' consent to have their infants subjected to the experiments. The U. researchers are reviewing the consent forms used. What a good idea.

Be on patrol • Some serious research might lead to the conclusion that the Utah Transit Authority should do away with its own police force and contract with another agency, probably the county's Unified Police Department, to serve the multi-county bus and train system. But we doubt it. Being a transit cop is different than being an officer for any other agency. A big part of the job involves customer service, helping people navigate the system, as well as arresting bad guys, quelling disturbances and checking to make sure passengers have paid their fares. The system crosses so many jurisdictions that outsourcing would be difficult. As to the question, asked by one UTA board member, of why a transit system is in the police business, one answer might be that it is commonplace. Transit systems from Boston to Dallas to San Francisco maintain their own constabularies. The UTA police system does not appear to be broken. Those who would fix it carry the burden of proof.