“Women’s Health in Ohio” a forum on Sept 17, 2019


“Women’s Health in Ohio
Tuesday September 17 6:30pm
The flyer is here
The video is here

with panelists:
Dr. Carla Harwell, University Hospitals
Iris E. Harvey, President and CEO, Planned Parenthood of Greater Ohio
Dr. Amy Hise,  CWRU School of Medicine
Tracy Carter, VP Government Relations, MetroHealth

Moderated by Marlene Harris Taylor WCPN/Ideastream

We’ll explore the state of women’s health in Ohio and the U.S. today and what can be done to improve it.

Ohio is ranked 32nd in overall health rankings for women (and children), according to a 2018 report published by America’s Health Rankings with: *high drug death among women
*low percentage of infants exclusively breastfed for 6 months
*low percentile of publicly-funded health services needs met

 In Ohio, black women are two to three times more likely to die in childbirth than white women while nationwide, American women are 50% more likely to die in childbirth than 30 years ago.

 And while there has been a shift toward including women in clinical drug trials in the last 25 years, there is still a long way to go in terms of robust representation of women. 

(Good news: for the first time since 2004, more women than men applied to U.S. medical schools. Women were also the majority of matriculants (new enrollees) to medical school for the second year in a row)

The statistics can be alarming, but what can be done to reverse these trends and inequalities? What role do our lawmakers play in our heath?   Where do we go from here?


Marelene Harris Taylor, Ideastream
Lakewood Public Library Main, 15425 Detroit Avenue, Lakewood, Ohio 44107
Cosponsored by Ideastream, LWV-Greater Cleveland, CWRU Siegal Lifelong Learning and Lakewood Public Library

  

“The 2020 Census: what does it mean for Ohio and Cleveland?” a forum on September 12, 2019

“The 2020 Census: what does it mean for
Ohio and Cleveland?”
Thursday September 12 7pm

the flyer is here
the forum write-up is here
the forum video is here

with panelists:

Lisa Neidert, Univ of Michigan Institute for Social Research

Daniel Ortiz, Policy Matters Ohio

Michele Pomerantz, Cuyahoga County Government

The forum will begin with brief comments from County Executive Armond Budish, Co-Chair of the Cuyahoga County Complete Count Committee of the 2020 Census

Moderated by Rich Exner Cleveland.com 


Rich Exner, cleveland.com

CWRU Siegal Beachwood Landmark Centre
25700 Science Park Dr., Suite 100, Beachwood, OH 44122

Cosponsored by Cleveland.com, LWV-Greater Cleveland and CWRU Siegal Lifelong Learning
   

 

“Plastics and Ohio” forum August 29, 2019 Rocky River Library

“Plastics and Ohio” forum
Plastic pollution, is it the next burning river?
What can residents do?

August 29, 2019 at 7pm

the flyer is here
the summary is here
the video is here

Moderator: Jocelyn Travis, Sierra Club Ohio

w/panelists:
•Cheryl Johncox, Sierra Club Ohio,

•Sunny Simon, District 11 Cuyahoga County Council,

•Sarah Damron, Surfrider Foundation,

•Sarah Mathews, Rumpke Waste,

•Cristie Snyder, Cuyahoga County Solid Waste District

Rocky River Public Library, 1600 Hampton Rd. Rocky River OH 44116

Cosponsored by LWV Greater Cleveland, the Sierra Club, Surfrider Foundation, the Bay Green Team, Rocky River Green Team and Rocky River Public Library

The Future of Political Debates City Club of Cleveland Aug 12, 2019

No Debate About It: The Future of Political Debates

Monday, August 12, 2019 at The City Club of Cleveland

Elizabeth Bennion, Ph.D.
Professor of Political Science & American Democracy Project Director, Indiana University South Bend, and Host of WNIT’s “Politically Speaking”

Harry Boomer​
Anchor Reporter, 19News/CW43, and Immediate Past President and Member, Greater Cleveland National Association of Black Journalists

Richard Davis, Ph.D.
Professor of Political Science and Director of the Office of Civic Engagement, Brigham Young University

John C. Green, Ph.D.
Interim President, University of Akron; Director, Ray C. Bliss Institute of Applied Politics; Distinguished Professor of Political Science

Moderator
Dan Moulthrop
CEO, The City Club of Cleveland

Read about it here:

 

A forum on journalism in Dayton July 29, 2019

A forum on journalism in Dayton July 29, 2019
What:   Media and Democracy: What the proposed sale of Cox Media might mean to Dayton.

Why:    The Dayton Daily News, Channel 7, and WHIO Radio are being sold to a private equity fund.

What might the impact be? What can you do?

The Video is here:

Join us for an exploration of how media and democracy intersect and the importance of strong local media. Panelists include:

In order of speaking (from right to left)

Yosef Getachew, Common Cause’s Media and Democracy Program Director, will provide an overview of media consolidation all over the country and its impact on communities.

Plus

• The Honorable Nan Whaley, mayor of Dayton
• Bob Daley, former political reporter (Dayton Journal Herald, Dayton Daily News, Congressional Quarterly),
• Joel Pruce, Univ of Dayton Prof of Human Rights
• Dr. Jim DeBrosse, retired assistant professor of journalism and a veteran newspaper reporter who worked 20 years for Cox newspapers in Dayton,
• Kevin Z. Smith, director of the Kiplinger Program in Public Affairs Journalism
• The Honorable Tom Roberts, former member of the Ohio General Assembly and Ohio Conference President of the NAACP
Program moderated by Catherine Turcer, Common Cause Ohio
Sponsored by Common Cause Ohio

Domestic Violence Forum, July 26, 2019 by Julie Hullett

Rep. Janine Boyd, D-Cleveland Heights, Alexandria Ruden of the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland, Judge K.J. Montgomery of Shaker Heights Municipal Court, Megen Gergen of the Domestic Violence and Child Advocacy Center

Rachel Dissell, moderator, The Plain Dealer

Local experts offer strategies for domestic violence victims
By JULIE HULLETT  The pdf is here

SHAKER HEIGHTS, Ohio — Lethality tests, advocacy and victim support systems are key to ending domestic violence, according to panelists at a Thursday forum. With a combination of support from legislators, law enforcement agencies and organizations that offer services for victims, the panelists said that more men and women in abusive relationships will survive.

“When there are continuums of care, it’s harder for people to fall in the cracks,” state Rep. Janine Boyd, D-Cleveland Heights said. “If we can engage them at one point and keep them engaged throughout the continuum, then you have a better chance of effectively helping them.”

Other panelists at the forum included:

  • Judge K.J. Montgomery of Shaker Heights Municipal Court
  • Alexandria Ruden of the Legal Aid Society of Cleveland
  • Megen Gergen of the Domestic Violence and Child Advocacy Center

Rachel Dissell, investigative reporter for The Plain Dealer, moderated the discussion. The event, which drew nearly 60 people, was hosted by the League of Women Voters of Shaker Heights, The Plain Dealer and the Shaker Heights Public Library, where it took place.

The forum video is here:

The highlights of the panel are below:

Aisha’s Law

Rep. Boyd spoke on the importance of House Bill 3, known as “Aisha’s Law” that she introduced in the state house in May. The bill is named after Aisha Fraser, who was murdered in Shaker Heights in November by her ex-husband, who was a former state representative, state senator and Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court judge.

This bill would offer additional protections to domestic violence victims, including requiring courts to make restraining orders available at all times and requiring law enforcement to create a separate track for high-risk domestic violence cases.

“Law enforcement has been one of the most supportive groups around the bill because domestic violence calls are among the most lethal for law enforcement,” she said. “They know the people and it’s a revolving door.”

Rep. Boyd said that Gov. Mike DeWine has shown support for this legislation. In the state budget for FY 2020-21, she said that there is a line-tem for statewide domestic violence programs for $1 million per year.

Lethality tests

One of the most important aspects of Aisha’s Law is the lethality test, a method to determine the lethality of a domestic situation. According to Ms. Ruden, the lethality test asks detailed questions so law enforcement can fully understand if a victim’s life is in danger and how to handle the people involved.

The lethality questionnaire asks the victim if his or her abuser is obsessive or has access to weapons. One vital question on the lethality test is whether or not the victim has been strangled. Panelists said that strangulation is a known precursor to more violence. Ms. Ruden said that Aisha’s Law also has a provision that makes strangulation a crime.

“The thing that we’re most excited about is that there is a piece in there on strangulation, finally, working with strangulation and making it a crime—and calling it what it is,” Ms. Ruden said. “It’s not attempted murder, it’s not attempted assault. It’s near-fatal strangulation.”

Victim support

The panelists stressed the importance of offering support and resources for the victims of domestic violence. When Ms. Gergen meets with clients at the Domestic Violence and Child Advocacy Center, she said that she helps them make a plan, such as where to live and how to support themselves.

Judge Montgomery also said that the advocates are instrumental in keeping the victims safe. She said that victims need to have a code word, so if the victim calls a friend or family member and uses that word, the other person will know to call 911. She also noted that in some cases it is necessary to keep a packed bag when it is time to leave the household.

“If somebody wants to kill you, they’re going to do it,” Ms. Ruden said. “[We need to] educate our victims, and the best way to do that is the lethality assessment because you educate not just the victim, but the community.”

Education to end the stigma

According to the panelists, another challenge with domestic violence situations is overcoming the stigma toward them. Judge Montgomery said that this crime knows no boundaries.

“One of the first things you realize is this is a crime that knows no economic constraints, no ethnicity, no neighborhood,” she said. “It comes from all five of our communities that come into the Shaker court, whether they be the most affluent or the most poor.”

Ms. Gergen said that victims are still stigmatized because their stories are questioned and some may blame the victim. She said that society sometimes asks what the victim did to make her husband hit her, or why she chose to be in a violent relationship.

“There has been an increase in conversations, but it’s still uncomfortable for folks,” she said.

Ms. Gergen explained that education and empowerment are key to overcoming the stigma. She said that it can be easy to identify domestic violence on TV, when a professional athlete is caught in the act on video. But it can be harder to admit that domestic violence is occurring if the suspected abuser is an acquaintance, such as a neighbor or a co-worker.

What can I do?

The panelists offered many opportunities for everyday citizens to get involved to help stop domestic violence. Ms. Gergen advised citizens to get to know their neighbors and check in to see how things are going.

Judge Montgomery said that parents must educate themselves and their children on how to handle difficult situations. Ms. Ruden said that people should be supportive to the victims, and suggested not to get upset with the victim if he or she returns to the abuser.

“It takes a victim of domestic violence seven to 10 times to get out of a battery situation,” Ms. Ruden said. “If you are that support system, don’t turn them away when they go back. At some point, they will get out.”

Rep. Boyd advised citizens to advocate for funding for domestic violence programs and resources at the federal level by calling their congressperson and senator and asking for matching funds and grants in states that are implementing the lethality protocol.

An audience member, Eileen Burkhart of Cleveland Heights, said that the presentation was information but is still waiting for more progress.

“This was a good education piece about what the law is, but we need to come up with a way where domestic violence situations are addressed way earlier than letting them get into court and the legal system,” Ms. Burkhart said. “We don’t catch it soon enough, there’s not enough support out there for victims to get the help they need.”

Making Sense of  Ohio’s Court System Saturday, October 12, 2019 Heights Library

The flyer is here
Making Sense of  
Ohio’s Court System
Saturday, October 12, 2019
10:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Heights Library Main Branch
2345 Lee Road, Cleveland Heights 44118

Eager to learn more about Ohio’s court system, how judges are selected, and how you can take action to ensure our courts are fair and impartial? The Ohio Fair Courts Alliance is a nonpartisan engagement project designed to educate Ohioans about challenges and opportunities facing the justice system. In this training, you’ll learn how Ohio’s court system impacts us—from voting rights, gerrymandering, the environment, and education to bail reform, healthcare, and immigration—and what citizens, like you, can do to improve it.
Free and open to the public

Training facilitated by Common Cause Ohio and Ohio Voice

RSVP here for Cleveland Heights
Training facilitated by Common Cause Ohio and Ohio Voice

Domestic Violence Forum July 25, 2019


Thursday July 25, 2019 at 7:00 p.m.
Domestic Violence Forum
The flyer is here
The forum write-up is here
The forum video is here

Shaker Public Library Main Branch
16500 Van Aken Boulevard Shaker Heights, OH 44120
A devastating and potentially tragic problem, an epidemic that is often ignored

What is domestic violence?
From the Domestic Violence and Child Advocacy Center: “Often referred to as battering, relationship abuse, or intimate partner violence; it is a pattern of behavior used to establish power and control over someone through fear and intimidation. It often includes the threat or use of violence, and can include physical, emotional, verbal, financial/resource, and sexual abuse.”
Find out how you can protect yourself, your loved ones, your friends and colleagues.

Panelists
Rep Janine Boyd (D), District 9, Ohio House of Representatives
Judge K.J. Montgomery Shaker Municipal Court
Alexandria Ruden, Legal Aid Society of Cleveland
Megen Gergen, Domestic Violence and Child Advocacy Center
Former student, Shaker Heights High School

Moderated by Rachel Dissell, The Plain Dealer
Sponsored by LWV Shaker Chapter, Shaker Public Library and The Plain Dealer

Before RBG, a Cleveland judge made history; it’s time to recognize Unstoppable Florence Allen: Andrea Simakis Plain Dealer June 30, 2019

Florence Ellinwood Allen is sworn in as a Common Pleas Court Judge for Cuyahoga County in 1921. Prior to her historic election to the trial court bench, Allen, a mean piano player, wrote music criticism for The Plain Dealer. (Kent State University at Ashtabula)

Before RBG, a Cleveland judge made history; it’s time to recognize Unstoppable Florence Allen: Andrea Simakis

Plain Dealer June 30, 2019
The link is here