This week, hosts James Hayes and Sarah Rodenberg speak with Stephen David, an organizer with the Columbus Safety Collective, and Bree Easterling, the Social Justice Outreach and Organizing Specialist at Policy Matters Ohio, about alternative care response programs in Columbus and Cleveland.
The Columbus Safety Collective came out of the summer uprisings of 2020 and exists to create an anti-racist, health centered, nonpolice emergency response program for the city of Columbus. Steve mentions a graph put out by the People’s Budget Columbus about the city’s budget.
Through their position at Policy Matters Ohio, Bree Easterling works with REACH and the CareforCLE campaign, which has around 25 coalition partners. Elaine Schleiffer founded REACH (Responding with Empathy, Access, and Community Healing) and partnered with NEOCH to build out a nonpolice care response.
Bree mentions a petition circulating this summer urging the Cleveland City Council and Mayor to fund a nonpolice care response pilot through the end of 2024. You can sign the petition here.
In talking about how difficult it is to get funding for these projects, Bree mentions the push for participatory budgeting in Cleveland receiving similar obstacles. Listen to our What’s Good with PB CLE episode to learn more about the People’s Budget Cleveland Issue 38 campaign.
When discussing other cities in Ohio, Steve mentions the Dayton Mediation Response Unit, housed under the Dayton Mediation Center.