In 2015, the City of Cleveland and the Department of Justice entered into a Consent Decree that mandated changes within the city's police department policies after a DOJ investigation prompted by the 2012 police chase that ended in the deaths of unarmed citizens--Timothy Russell and Malissa WIlliams--in a barrage of 137 bullets.
A nearly two-year DOJ investigation led to the consent decree, which mandated reforms including use of force policies, diversity in recruitment and hiring, transparency, and bias-free policing.
The goal of the Consent Decree is to repair trust between the community and police and protect the constitutional rights of Clevelanders.
When the Consent Decree was signed, the timeline for accomplishing its goals was five years. But 2020 passed and there is still work to do to meet the mandates of the decree and to restore community trust.
Over the next 10 months, a series of community conversations convened by the United Way of Greater Cleveland the Cleveland chapter of the NAACP will take an up-close look at different aspects of the consent decree. The first of those conversations is this evening at six and it will be carried live on the City Club website at CityClubofCleveland.org and simulcast on WOVU radio on Cleveland's East Side, where a panel discussion of East Side residents is planned immediately after the session.
The conversation, hosted by Judge Ronald Adrine, will cover where we are in relation to the goals set by the decree. The event is virtual and free.
You can listen in or participate by registering online at the United Way's website. We have a link on our showpage today at ideastream.org.
If you are unable to listen, we'll bring you the conversation Monday on the Sound of Ideas.
Also in this episode of the Sound of Ideas, Ohio's phased COVID-19 vaccine rollout so far has focused primarily on healthcare workers and the state's elderly population. Soon, people with certain health conditions and teachers will be at the front of the line, too. But, demand for the vaccine currently outpaces supply.
As the state makes the vaccine available to more members of the general public, questions are likely to emerge about whether employers can require workers to take the vaccine and what rights employees have if they decline it.
The pandemic brings together aspects of employment law with personal health privacy--creating potential pitfalls for employers and workers alike.
The state may modify its overnight curfew and could even lift it if COVID-19 hospitalizations continue to trend downward.
Such a move would be welcomed by the restaurant and hospitality industries that have been especially hard hit by measures enacted to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Hon. Ronald Adrine, former Administrative & Presiding Judge, Cleveland Municipal Court
Helen Forbes Fields, executive vice president, General Counsel, United Way Greater Cleveland
Kayla Griffin, First Vice President, NAACP Cleveland branch
Ann-Marie Ahern, employment lawyer; principle; McCarthy, Lebit, Crystal & Liffman, Co., LPA
Karen Kasler, Statehouse News Bureau chief, Ohio Public Radio/TV