“Experts say state needs bail reform” by Julie Hullett

Summary of “Bail Reform” forum held at Cleveland Hts/University Hts Public Library on Thursday December 12, 2019

Experts say state needs bail reform
By JULIE HULLETT
The pdf is here


left to right: Nick Castele- Ideastream, Claire Chevrier ACLU Ohio, Judge Charles L. Patton Jr., Cleveland Municipal Court, Judge John J. Russo, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court

CLEVELAND HEIGHTS — Panelists at a Thursday forum concluded that the state of Ohio is in desperate need of bail reform, a slow yet necessary process to even the scales as defendants stand before the justice system.

The Greater Cleveland Chapter of the League of Women Voters sponsored the event at the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library on Dec. 12, in addition to other sponsors such as Case Western Reserve University Siegal Lifelong Learning, Heights Public Library, Ideastream and First Interstate Properties, Ltd.

Nick Castele of WCPN/Ideastream moderated the panel, which consisted of advocacy counsel for the American Civil Liberties Union of Ohio Claire Chevrier, Cleveland Municipal Court Judge Charles Patton, Jr. and Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court Administrative and Presiding Judge John Russo.

“In Ohio, we have a two-tier system of justice in which wealthy individuals who were assigned cash bail as a condition of release get to go home to their families,” Ms. Chevrier said. “Those who don’t have deep pockets and can’t pay for their cash bail as a condition of release stay in jail.”

The video from the forum is here:

Pretrial services

Judge Patton said that Cleveland did not have a pretrial services department two years ago. A representative from pretrial services greets people in custody directly after their arrest and gathers information such as their employment and housing status. Judge Patton said that a risk assessment tool is used to determine if the person is a risk to the community and the pretrial services department gathers that information.

He said that there are currently 90 people in Cleveland Municipal Court jail. Several years ago, there was an average 200-300 people in jail on any day, according to Judge Patton.

“During this year, we have reduced our jail population by more than 50 percent by utilizing the pretrial services,” he said.

Risk assessments

Ms. Chevrier said that risk assessments cannot be objective. Although some are better than others, she said, risk assessments are based on underlying biases and criminal policing. For example, some assessments would flag defendants who live in a high crime neighborhood, which Ms. Chevrier said is criminalization of poverty. Other biases include number of former arrests and convictions, which can have racially disparate outcomes, she explained.

“There’s a lot of coercion under cash bail system,” she said. “That is not an objective measure.”

Closing the gap

Judge Russo explained how Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court works in coordination with Cleveland Municipal Court. He said that 60 percent of the felony charges in the common pleas court come from the 13 municipal courts in the county. The county court must manage 15,000 to 17,000 cases per year, he said.

Six years ago, Judge Russo said that defendants waited an average of 30 days in jail between appearing in front of the municipal court and the county court. He said that the gap is now four days because dire consequences come from being stuck in jail.

“We closed that gap for a number of reasons…[like] how it can affect someone’s life in a matter of three days, losing a car, a job, a home, whatever it might be,” Judge Russo said.

Moving forward

Judge Russo was a member of the Supreme Court of Ohio’s task force on bail reform and the group published nine recommendations, including requiring a risk assessment tool and the presence of counsel for an initial appearance, considering alternatives to pretrial detention and use text or email reminders for court dates, according to the report.

Judge Russo said that Ohio needs a “centralized data-based system for criminal justice system” so every region of the state can collect and compare data equally. Judge Patton compared the costs of keeping people in jail or releasing them until their next court date.

“We are spending between $100-150 per night per defendant in jail,” Judge Patton said. “We are spending less than $10 for every night they’re on the street.”

Ms. Chevrier and the ACLU are advocating for “a presumption of release” unless the judge or prosecutor asks for a hearing because they notice something concerning in the facts of the case or the person’s history that could make the person a public safety risk.

Audience members and mental health professionals Dr. Megan Testa and Annette Amistadi said that the forum was informative. Dr. Tetsa of Shaker Heights, a psychiatrist at University Hospitals, said that she often works will patients who are mentally ill and need treatment rather than jail time. Ms. Amistadi of Parma said that she came to the forum to learn more about how the justice system can treat people fairly and work as efficiently as possible.

Bail Reform in Ohio. What are our Options? a forum on Dec 12, 2019

The flyer is here
Bail Reform in Ohio. What are our Options?
a forum on Dec 12, 2019

Panelists
Judge John J. Russo, Administrative and Presiding Judge, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court

Judge Charles L. Patton Jr., Judge, Cleveland Municipal Court

Claire Chevrier, Advocacy Counsel, ACLU of Ohio

Moderated by Nick Castele, WCPN/Ideastream

Bail reform has bipartisan support in Ohio. This forum will discuss why it matters and some of the options being considered to make our courts more fair for everyone.

Nick Castele, WCPN/Ideastream

Heights Public Library Main
2345 Lee Road, Cleveland Hts. OH 44118
Cosponsored by Ideastream, Heights Public Library, League of Women Voters Greater Cleveland and CWRU Siegal Lifelong Learning
Corporate sponsor: First Interstate Properties, Ltd.

Upcoming Live Public Policy Forums

Upcoming Live Public Policy Forums
All are free and open to the public

Bail Reform in Ohio. What are our Options?
Thursday December 12, 2019 at 7 p.m.
Bail reform has bipartisan support in Ohio. This forum will discuss why it matters and some of the options being considered to make our courts more fair for everyone.
Moderated by Nick Castele, WCPN/Ideastream
Heights Public Library Main, 2345 Lee Road, Cleveland Hts. OH 44118
Cosponsored by Ideastream, Heights Public Library, League of Women Voters Greater Cleveland and CWRU Siegal Lifelong Learning

Women’s Empowerment Series
Starts January 28, 2020

Preschool and Early Child Education forum
Thursday, January 30, 2020
7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Shaker Heights Public Library Main
16500 Van Aken Blvd

 

All open to the public. All of them free

2020 Women’s Empowerment Series

the flyer is here
Our Voices, Our Vote: Courage and Persistence in Black Women’s Struggle for Voting Rights
Joy Bostic

Interim Vice President, Office for Inclusion, Diversity and Equal Opportunity; Associate Professor, Religion, CWRU

Talk will be at Tinkham Veale University Center on CWRU campus
11038 Bellflower Rd, Cleveland, OH 44106

Tuesday January 28 7-8:30 p.m.
This talk will delve into the core values and organizing strategies Black women use locally and nationally in the struggle for inclusive voting rights in the United States. This series is held in partnership with The Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program Case Western Reserve University and the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.

Free and open to the public.
RSVP here

                

 

Beyond Suffrage: Women’s Reform Networks
and the Road for Women’s Rights
Einav Rabinovitch-Fox
Visiting Assistant Professor, History, CWRU

Talk will be at CWRU Siegal Facility on Richmond Rd
25700 Science Park Dr Beachwood, OH 44122

Thursday February 27 7-8:30 p.m.

This talk will explore how the local activism of women in various reform causes in Cleveland and elsewhere led to their involvement in the suffrage movement, thus situating the right to vote in a broader activist agenda to advance women’s rights and equality before and after the ratification of the 19th Amendment. This series is held in partnership with The Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program Case Western Reserve University and the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.

Free and open to the public.
RSVP here

        

A Collector’s Tale: Memorabilia Of The American Women’s Suffrage Movement

Angela Clark-Taylor
Director, Flora Stone Mather Center for Women, CWRU

Talk will be at Lakewood Public Library, Main
15425 Detroit Ave, Lakewood, OH 44107

Thursday March 26  6:30 – 8 p.m.

This interactive lecture will utilize artifacts and ephemera from the American Women’s Suffrage Movement and the Anti-Suffrage Movement to provide a brief history of women’s suffrage and the memorabilia suffragists created to develop a mainstream market appeal for their movement to the American people. This series is held in partnership with The Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program Case Western Reserve University and the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.

Free and open to the public.
RSVP here

 


Symposium Link

 

                

From The 19th Amendment to the Occupy
Movement: 100 Years Of Women’s Social Movement Activism

Heather Hurwitz
Lecturer, Sociology, CWRU

Talk will be at One University Circle
10730 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 44106

Wednesday May 20 6:00 – 7:30 p.m.

This talk will explore the range of social movement activism that women have engaged in since the passage of the 19th amendment. Topics include the pursuit of racial and gender equality, women in environmental movements, feminists in the Occupy movement, and more. Since suffrage, women have continued to fight for equality even within progressive movements. This series is held in partnership with The Laura and Alvin Siegal Lifelong Learning Program Case Western Reserve University and the League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland.

Free and open to the public.
RSVP here

 

Cosponsored by

   

Preschool and Early Child Education forum Jan 30, 2020 at Shaker Hts Public Library

Preschool and Early Child Education forum
Thursday, January 30, 2020 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Shaker Heights Public Library Main 16500 Van Aken Blvd 44122
The flyer is here

The role of PreK in closing the achievement gap is clear. Engage with experts discussing the difference early childhood education makes and Shaker Schools’ preK plans.

with panelists:
Rebekah Dorman, Director, Cuyahoga County Office of Early         Childhood/Invest in Children

Billie Osborne Fears, Executive Director, Starting Point

Dr. Marla Robinson, Chief Academic Officer, Shaker Hts. Schools

more

moderated by Sharon Broussard, Former editorial writer, The Plain Dealer/Cleveland.com

Sharon Broussard

Cosponsored by Shaker Heights Public Library and the League of Women Voters Greater Cleveland- Shaker Hts. Chapter

 

Women’s Suffrage Centennial Symposium: From Complex Legacy to Collective Action April 18, 2020


Women’s Suffrage Centennial Symposium: From Complex Legacy to Collective Action
April 18, 2020
More info here

The flyer is here
Order tickets here

Tinkham Veale University Center at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU)
Ticket price, including lunch, will be $35.

This symposium brings together leading voices on the women’s struggle for the vote and will reflect on the historical meaning of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment and the extension of the franchise to women.

Morning speakers:

      • Paula J. Giddings, retired professor of Africana Studies, Smith College, and author of When and Where I Enter: The Impact of Black Women on Race and Sex in America,  In Search of Sisterhood: Delta Sigma Theta and the Challenge of the Black Sorority Movement, and Ida: A Sword Among Lions – Ida B. Wells and the Campaign Against Lynching.
      • Dawn Teele, professor, Political Science Department, University of Pennsylvania, and author of Forging the Franchise: The Political Origins of the Women’s Vote

Panel discussion “Where do we go from here? A Call to Action Moment”

      • Amy Hanauer, Executive Director of Ohio Policy Matters, will moderate. Panelists include:
      • Crystal Bryant, Do-project Director, Cleveland Votes
      • Destinee Henton, Ohio Outreach Coordinator, Alliance for the Great Lakes
      • Rebecca Maurer, Maurer Law LCC, Lead Member Cleveland Advocates for Safe Housing (CLASH)
      • Jasmine Santana, Councilwoman, Cleveland City Council Ward 14

Lunchtime
Keynote speaker

      • Virginia Kase, CEO of the League of Women Voters of the U. S., will wrap up during dessert, with a “charge” to move forward and get involved.

Cosponsoring with the LWV of Greater Cleveland are CWRU Flora Stone Mather Center for Women ★ CWRU Political Science Department ★ CWRU Siegal Lifelong Learning ★ CWRU Center for Civic Engagement and learning ★ CWRU African American Studies ★ CWRU Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences ★ CWRU Office of Inclusion, Diversity and Equal Opportunity ★ Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Alpha Omega Chapter ★ Cleveland Marshall College of Law, Cleveland State University ★ Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association, Women in Law Section ★ Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Greater Cleveland Alumnae Chapter ★ Facing History and Ourselves ★ Hispanic Roundtable ★ The Junior League of Cleveland ★ LINKS, Western Reserve (OHIO) Chapter  ★ National Council of Jewish Women/Cleveland ★ Norman S. Minor Bar Association ★ Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Cleveland Chapter  ★ Urban League of Greater Cleveland ★ Women of Color Foundation ★ YWCA of Greater Cleveland

 

Mayor Kessler (Bexley OH), Alan R. Rosenfeld LWV-Ohio, Sunny Simon/Mike Foley Testimony, Senate Bill 222, 12/3/19

Mayor Kessler (Bexley OH) Testimony, Senate Bill 222, 12/3/19
Mayor Ben Kessler, City of Bexley
testimony on 12/3/19 S.B. 222 (3rd Hearing)
Ohio Senate version of “banning the ban” re: single use bags
“Local Government, Public Safety and Veterans Affairs” Committee

The link is here
—–

League of Women Voters-Ohio Testimony
SB222 – Prohibit Tax Plastic Bag
Alan R. Rosenfield – Energy Specialist
Peggy Ann Berry – Environment Specialist
Senate Local Government, Public Safety and Veterans Affairs Committee December 3, 2019
The link is here

Testimony from Cuyahoga County Councilwoman Sunny Simon and Cuyahoga County Sustainability Director Mike Foley
The link is here

All of the testimony is here under December 3, 2019

How Do We Increase Voter Turn Out in 2020 Weds Nov 13, 2019 at 7pm (incl video)


How Do We Increase Voter Turn Out in 2020

Wednesday, November 13, 2019
7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Shaker Heights Public Library Main 16500 Van Aken Blvd
The flyer is here
Ways to improve participation in the November 3, 2020 election
The forum write up is here
The video is here

Panelists
Mike Brickner, Ohio State Director, All Voting is Local

Anthony W. Perlatti, Director, Cuyahoga County Board of
Elections

Jen Miller, Director, League of Women Voters Ohio

Free and open to the public
Cosponsored by League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland-Shaker Chapter and Shaker Heights Public Library

Teaching Cleveland Stories

Cleveland 1912: Civitas Triumphant By Dr. John Grabowski

Mark Hanna: The Clevelander Who Made a President By Joe Frolik

Rockefeller’s Right-Hand Man: Henry Flagler By Michael D. Roberts

Cleveland’s Original Black Leader: John O. Holly By Mansfield Frazier

The Heart of Amasa Stone By John Vacha

Frederic C. Howe:  Making Cleveland the City Beautiful (Or At Least Trying) by Marian Morton

Bill Veeck: The Man Who Conquered Cleveland and Changed Baseball Forever By Bill Lubinger

When Cleveland Saw Red By John Vacha

Maurice Maschke: The Gentleman Boss of Cleveland by Brent Larkin

Inventor Garrett Morgan, Cleveland’s Fierce Bootstrapper  by Margaret Bernstein

How Cleveland Women Got the Vote and What They Did With It  by Marian Morton

One Man Can Make a Difference by Roldo Bartimole

The Election That Changed Cleveland Forever by Michael D Roberts

Deferring Dreams: Racial and Religious Covenants in Shaker Heights, Cleveland Heights and East Cleveland, 1925 to 1970 By Marian Morton

Cyrus Eaton: Khruschev’s Favorite Capitalist By Jay Miller

Ray Shepardson: The Man Who Relit Playhouse Square By John Vacha

Bertha Josephine Blue By Debbi Snook

The Scourge of Corrupt and Inefficient Politician: The Citizens League of Greater Cleveland By Marian Morton

The Man Who Saved Cleveland By Michael Roberts and Margaret Gulley