Ohio News

19-year-old says she hung ribbons in Westerville to represent black lives lost

Channel 10 news - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 17:01

On Tuesday, Kennedy Kandi hung black, brown, and red ribbons throughout the city of Westerville.

"The ribbons here represent black lives lost, it sends a message through our community that racism will not be tolerated in this town in Westerville," Kennedy said.

We had a chance to talk with Kennedy and her mother Wednesday afternoon ahead of another protest happening in town.

"I feel hurt and I feel angry but I also feel enlightened and I feel like this is a great time to spread awareness and spread, educate people along the way too," Kennedy said.

Her mother, Demia, is a consultant and founding partner of Significance LLC. She said they specialize in talking to organizations, businesses and college students about diversity, equity and inclusion.

"I think we're moving and I think what happens next will determine if it's the right process if we're moving in the right way but we are moving and movement is important and sometimes there has to be pain within purpose and so we need to end racism it's ugly, it's painful and I think there's an element to the community as a whole for the first time collectively feeling that pain," Demia said.

She said especially with all of the protests and people speaking out.

"if you are feeling urgent it is because there is a voice in you, a voice of freedom and unity in you that is begging to come out," Demia said.

She said the community needs to go from pain to productivity.

"We have people, we have allies now who are finally owning racism and that's a great step in the right direction," Demia said.

Both women said the conversations aren't just happening in Westerville, they are and they said need to be happening everywhere.

"It's everywhere and that's why it's so important to educate yourself on unconscious bias all of those things privilege systemic poverty social change and you have a responsibility once you educated yourself you need to hold yourself and others around you accountable," Demia said.

They both feel anyone's voice can be heard and if someone feels something isn't right, say something.

"I think the next generation is finding new voices, finding new ways to use their voice I think it has been a lot of social media creations whether it's pages or videos or songs or poetry I think that young people are coming together very very strongly," Kennedy said.

Demia said the conversation may be uncomfortable for some, but it's a conversation that's needed.

"There's no excuse for anyone to not have a voice right now, you just have to figure out what yours is going to be, you're either racist or you're not there's no in-between," Demia said.

Categories: Ohio News

You can dance if you want to, but not at wedding receptions in Ohio, not yet

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 16:59

It is supposed to be one of the most memorable days of their lives, as couples commit to a lifetime union before their friends and family.​

Often a celebration is held following the exchanging of rings and vows that includes food and festivities.​
It is a time when society has collectively agreed that dancing is an appropriate form of expressing the joy one feels in that moment.​

The global pandemic has changed that, at least in part.​ For months, wedding reception venues were closed, unable to cater to the needs of brides and grooms, because of a ban on gatherings of more than 10 people and the need to maintain social distance.​

Some of those restrictions have been eased, and venues are now allowed to operate once again, but cannot have more than 300 people at the reception.​ Attendees must also remain seated when eating or drinking, be sequestered to tables of no more than 10, and those tables must be at least six feet away from other tables.​

Finally, there is no dancing allowed. ​Many of us have been to wedding receptions where families have celebrated with abandon. Perhaps the reception you attended served alcohol and if it did, you may have seen an attendee inebriated to the point where they actually may be dancing better than they would have otherwise.​

As a young man, I worked banquet halls and often served during wedding receptions. I have seen thousands of people on countless dance floors, few of them anywhere close to being six-feet apart.​ At a time when the state is trying to slow the spread of COVID-19, dancing at a wedding reception can potentially be a moment of transmission. ​

Some industry professionals think they can make it safe enough to open up the dance floor.​ They have all kinds of ideas from marking off space on the dance floor that people would have to stand in or on that will keep them from getting too close to other dancers.​ Another idea is to allow the attendees to dance one table at a time, and yet another is to create mini-dance floors around the room so that only a small number of people can be on them at any one time.​

Whatever the solution is, these professionals have shared their ideas with the state and are hoping for a swift reopening of dance floors. ​It may even be economical to do so. Professional DJs are reporting some couples are postponing weddings, because they cannot have dancing on their special day.​ While that means they will not miss out on the work they have already booked, it does mean that sometime in the future they will lose a potential work day as they make up for the original date.​

At least for now, DJ’s are not seeing many cancellations, despite the normal financial commitment a wedding reception has and a potential crunch thanks to the pandemic.​ The DJ’s are just one of the many wedding vendors who have ended up shifting work over the next several months to two years. ​

As for couples who do not decide to wait and keep their booked date, some venues say there is a little bit of flexibility.​ John Brooks, owner of Brookshire, the Venue, says he has talked to the governor’s office and has been assured that specialty dances will be allowed despite the ban on dancing.​

The idea is the couple just got married so clearly they will be living together, if they are not already, so social distancing is unnecessary.​ The father-daughter dance is also being allowed, because throughout the day and the ceremony it is highly possible they have been closer than six-feet apart, especially if dad walked his daughter down the aisle. ​

Brooks hopes to see new standards allowing for dancing guests to be available by July 1st.

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Categories: Ohio News

What does systemic racism really mean? 10TV talks to an expert

Channel 10 news - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 16:47

COLUMBUS, Ohio - It's a phrase that has been used a lot in recent days - systemic racism. But not everyone may understand what it truly means.

So 10TV reached out to Kyle Strickland, the senior legal analyst and special assistant to the director of the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at The Ohio State University. The Kirwan Institute is a research-based center that focuses on issues of race and ethnicity while looking at how institutional racism and unconscious biases play a role in perpetuating disparities.

What Strickland is clear about is that systemic racism is not about an exchange of racial slurs between two individuals. It is about deep-rooted discrimination that has repeated itself again and again and becomes more and more ingrained in society during a span of generations.

"It permeates within our institutions, it’s within our laws, our policies and our practices that have this grounded foundation of biases, discrimination where you have barriers that place certain races above others," Strickland said. "So when we talk about systemic racism, it’s in our institutions, it’s in our organizations, and it permeates so much so that people see it as normal, and it’s kind of normalized, that’s how, the way things are, when, in fact, these structures have been set up to place certain races above others."

Strickland cites several examples, from slavery to Jim Crow laws, the war on drugs, mass incarceration, and more. And he says the recent protests have only proven that the problem is still very much here.

"It shows that we haven’t dealt with the issue of systemic racism in our country, we haven’t dealt with the issue of police brutality and police violence either in a real way and the consequences of that," he said.

To explain more about systemic racism, he used housing as an example. At one point in our country, only a white man could even own property. In later years, people of color still faced discrimination with exclusionary zoning and redlining by banks that would deny loans, even when a person had the finances and credit to be approved. And while the Fair Housing Act of 1968 removed some of the laws on the book, there were plenty of policies still in place enforcing segregation.

"If people face all these barriers, if people face discrimination in organizations and institutions and systems, then they are literally systematically shut out from opportunities," Strickland said. "So they might fall into poverty, they might have less access to opportunities as anybody else, and so, what tends to happen, the narrative that is spun, both against black people and people in poverty and poor people is that they are in those circumstances because it’s some sort of fault of their own or some sort of personal or cultural level deficit. And instead, we need to place where the actual fault is, which is on the system, the organizations and the institutions that have extracted from people and have exploited them."

Strickland argues that is why it is so important to understand the history and the change that needs to happen in order to upend a system that has for years been acting as an oppressor.

"Even when some well-meaning people may not even realize it, you have to recognize that the consequences of racist policies in the past have led to where we are today and have added to stereotypes about certain people in certain communities," he said. "When it comes to race and issues of racism, you have to talk about how this society has not valued black lives or black and brown lives as much as it does other lives."

Categories: Ohio News

Local coaches, athletes preparing for tough conversations about race

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 16:27

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Locker rooms, fields and courts serve as a safe space for young athletes. It’s a space where racism and hatred can seem rare. It’s a space where teammates are brothers and sisters working toward a common goal, no matter their race or background. Coaches watch that blending of society up-close.

At Reynoldsburg High School, Buddy White has served as the football coach for nine years. He coaches a team, which he says is about 75 percent young black men. He’s among the few black men to serve as a football head coach in the Ohio Capital Conference. It’s a mentorship role Coach White takes seriously.

“We play the role of the father in many different situations,” White said. “The kids come and talk to us about things that I’m not sure they talk to their own parents about. The one thing we have to do is care about these kids.”

Many of those young men now carry new questions and concerns as they talk with their teammates and coaches.  With the death of George Floyd and numerous other instances of black men and women killed in police custody, kids are seeking answers, and it’s a tough conversation to have.

“Not only the kids . . . it scared me,” White said.

With local school districts starting to permit athletes to return to schools for in-person voluntary conditioning, it’s the first time many of those athletes have seen their teammates or coaches in nearly three months.  Reynoldsburg junior quarterback Dijon Jennings is one of the players eager to ask questions and serve as a leader.

“Being a young black man myself, it’s unfortunate for the community, the things that happen,” Jennings said. “We’re just looking for change.”

Coach White says his message to his players remains consistent.

“We definitely teach and urge our kids to respect authority in all situations, in the school, on the football field and in the community, and our kids do such a great job with that,” he said.

White says he plans to have a Reynoldsburg police officer visit one of his team workouts this summer, so players and police can get to know each other and better understand the challenges they face.

“I would like to know from law enforcement what can we do to change it,” White said.

Jennings, who is hoping to earn a college scholarship in football, says he’s eager to get in front of the issue for his teammates and future athletes at his school.

“We’ve been given a platform with social media and just embracing change and pushing to do better,” Jennings said. “We are young, but there’s other people coming up behind us that look up to us as I look up to athletes now . . . LeBron James . . . many more, to take a stand in their communities and embrace change.”

Categories: Ohio News

Science from home: Thunderstorm clouds

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 16:16
What you need:
  • Large see through container
  • Small cup
  • Cold water
  • Warm water
  • Food coloring
Steps:
  1. Fill your container with cool water (fill most of the way, maybe about 7/8 full so that you still have some room at the top)
  2. In the small cup, add warm water
  3. Use food coloring to dye the color of the warm water (will probably just need a drop or 2)
  4. Carefully place the container full of warm, colored water in the bottom of the container of cool water
  5. Watch what happens
The science and how this applies to our atmosphere & storms:

Our atmosphere acts like a fluid. So, we can use water to see how it it reacts, and in this case how it reacts to different temperatures.

Our big container of water represents a small slice of our atmosphere in a stable state.

The reason that we dyed the water a different color is so that we can see what happens with warmer air in our atmosphere. This is something that happens almost daily thanks to the sun, and sometimes a southerly shift in the wind.

When we add the small cup of hot water, instead of spreading out evenly, it shot to the top. Heat rises because it is less dense than cooler air. This rising motion in our atmosphere creates instability, which is a key ingredient for thunderstorms.

Once the hot water reached the top of the “atmosphere,” it began to spread out and take on an anvil shape that we’re used to seeing with thunderstorms.

Categories: Ohio News

Ohio State announces plan for return to campus this fall; no decision on football

Channel 10 news - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 15:40

COLUMBUS, Ohio - The Ohio State University announced that it plans to resume in-person classes for the fall semester.

The university said specific guidelines will be announced in the coming weeks based on state and local health authorities and recommendations from the university's COVID-19 Transition Task Force.

According to the university, the return to campus will include a combination of face covering, physical distancing, hand hygiene, limited density in indoor spaces, control of the flow of traffic into and around buildings, continued employee teleworking when possible, testing, symptoms tracking and contact tracing.

"We are dedicated to continuing our core mission, including providing the best possible college experience for our students while operating under a set of circumstances that no one has experienced before," President Michael Drake said.

The academic calendar will be adjusted as well with the first day of classes is set for Tuesday, Aug. 25 and the last day will be Friday, Dec. 4. The last day of in-person, on-campus instruction will be Wednesday, Nov. 25.

The last week of classes and final exams will be done through distance learning.

The university will also reduce population density in the residence halls.

In regard to athletics, the university said leaders are working on a plan for student-athletes to resume practice and competition.

Final plans will be subject to decisions made by the Big Ten Conference, NCAA and health officials.

"Regarding football, our hope and intention is to safely have a football season, with an audience spaced out in our stadium, but we haven't made any final decisions," Drake said.

Categories: Ohio News

Ohio State students to return to campus in fall, football plans to be determined

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 15:21

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH)– The Ohio State University announced plans for students to return to campus in the fall.

Those decisions were announced by the university Board of Trustees Wednesday.

READ MORE: The Ohio State University selects new president

Return to campus

The university announced the first day of classes will be Tuesday, August 25.

Specific guidelines will be announced in the coming weeks, according to the university.

According to OSU, the resumption of full operations on Ohio State campuses will include a combination of the use of appropriate face coverings, physical distancing, hand hygiene, limited density in indoor spaces, control of the flow of traffic into and around buildings, continued employee teleworking when possible, testing, symptoms tracking and contact tracing. 

A teaching and learning approach that combines in-person and distance methods is also being developed.

“We are dedicated to continuing our core mission, including providing the best possible college experience for our students while operating under a set of circumstances that no one has experienced before,” President Michael V. Drake said.

In mid-March Ohio State announced it would be finishing the spring semesters through online classes, requiring students to move out of residence halls due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to university housing, Ohio State has 42 residence halls on main campus, and freshmen and sophomore students are required, with some exceptions, to live in university housing.

The university will temporarily exempt second-year students from that requirement. Second-year students who want to exercise the special exemption must notify University Housing by June 10

Housing options will be provided to second-year students who still choose to live in university housing.

OSU says that by June 19, it will outline details of a plan to promote physical distancing in on-campus housing and dining locations.

Football

The university has also hopes to play the 2020 football season. The Buckeyes have seven home games scheduled this season, starting with the Sept. 5 home opener against Bowling Green.

There will be a phased reopening of the Woody Hayes Athletic Center and the Schumaker Complex. Final plans for all sports will be subject to decisions made by the Big Ten Conference and NCAA, and directives of state and local health authorities.

“Regarding football, our hope and intention is to safely have a football season, with an audience spaced out in our stadium, but we haven’t made any final decisions,” President Drake said.

However, the season will likely be impacted. NBC4 Sports Director Jerod Smally reports the highly-anticipated Ohio State at Oregon game in September will likely not be played in Eugene, due to order of the Governor in Oregon. The state has banned all mass gatherings through September. Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith says he has talked to Oregon’s athletic director about possible schedule changes, but no new plans have emerged.

Ohio Stadium has a capacity of more than 102,000 people.

Categories: Ohio News

Westerville implements uptown street closures due to planned protest

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 15:11

WESTERVILLE, Ohio (WCMH) — Westerville announced it is implementing street closures and modified traffic patterns due to a large crowd associated with a planned protest Wednesday evening.

Westerville protest pic.twitter.com/UQczYaz1qB

— Mark Vukovic (@markvukovic) June 3, 2020

State Street is closed between East Park and West Home Streets. The following additional road closure information take effect:

  • East Home Street and the parking lots on the northeast and southeast corners of North State and East Home Streets
  • East College Avenue from State to Vine Streets
  • West College Avenue from State Street to the City Parking Lot
  • Winter Street to the parking lot entrance. Access to the Union Savings Bank drive-thru will be maintained via Winter Street
  • A barrier allowing local traffic only will be placed on Walnut Street for motorists traveling northbound.
  • West Main from State street, to the Middlefield Bank drive-thru.
  • East Main from State Street to the parking areas behind the Uptown businesses/Haywood Alley.
  • East Lincoln Street will be one-way westbound
  • Parking along Vine Street, between Park Street and Old County Line Road, will be prohibited

The street closures and restrictions are the same used during 4th Friday, a monthly street fair hosted in Uptown Westerville.

Categories: Ohio News

Person who attended Columbus protests tests positive for COVID-19, attendees asked to monitor for symptoms

Channel 10 news - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 15:09

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Columbus Public Health is asking anyone who was apart of the protests in downtown to monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms after learning of a confirmed case in an individual who attended.

According to public health, the person was symptomatic on May 27, but still attended the protests.

Columbus Public Health said it does not have specific details on which dates the person was at the protests.

The person tested positive on May 31, Columbus Public Health said.

If you attended the protests, Columbus Public Health says to get a free COVID-19 test if you become sick. For a testing location near you, call 614-645-1519.

Columbus Public Health adds if you gather for a peaceful protest, keep yourselves and others healthy and safe by wearing a face covering, avoiding large crowds and stay home if you're sick.

Categories: Ohio News

Murder charge against former officer in Floyd case upgraded, 3 other officers charged

Channel 10 news - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 14:47

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Prosecutors are charging a Minneapolis police officer accused of pressing his knee against George Floyd’s neck with second-degree murder, and for the first time are leveling charges against three other officers.

Bystander video showing Floyd’s May 25 death has sparked violent protests nationwide and around the world.

Minnesota Attorney General formally announced charges in a press conference earlier on Wednesday.


The officer, Derek Chauvin, was fired May 26 and initially charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.

Three other officers were also fired but weren’t immediately charged. The Star-Tribune reports that Attorney General Keith Ellison will charge Thomas Lane, J. Kueng and Tou Thao with aiding and abetting murder.

Categories: Ohio News

NBC4 announces ‘The Conversation:’ An hour-long special on race

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 14:44

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — NBC4 will air a one-hour special program titled “The Conversation,” hosted by NBC4 Anchors Matt Barnes and Darlene Hill.  After days of protest over racial injustice, NBC4 will host a live conversation about racial inequality in Central Ohio and possible solutions. This program will be a raw, honest dialog sitting down with local citizens of color. “The Conversation” will also include viewer-submitted content discussing and focusing on viewer’s experiences regarding race in our society.

“The Conversation” will be a robust, nuanced look at the state of race relations in Columbus and beyond. The program will not only be on NBC4 and NBC4i.com but also broadcast with NBC4’s community partners at Urban One Columbus.  “The Conversation” will be simulcast on Power 107.5/106.3 and Bounce-TV (Air: 23.1, Spectrum Ch. 283, Wow Ch.192).

“The racial tension and divide across the nation is very real, NBC4 has the proven ability to educate, inform and build bridges,” said Ken Freedman VP and General Manager of NBC4. “It’s our hope ‘The Conversation’ will give voice to those who feel marginalized and unheard, in so doing we can help diffuse a volatile situation and give constructive ways to talk about the issues, elevate awareness and find solutions.”

Join “The Conversation” CLICK HERE to submit your own video.

The Conversation
Thursday, June 4
7 p.m. – 8 p.m. Resources
Categories: Ohio News

Protester who took part in downtown Columbus demonstrations tests positive for COVID-19

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 14:25

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Columbus Public Health tweeted it is aware of a confirmed case of the coronavirus in an individual who attended protests in downtown Columbus.

Columbus Health says the individual was symptomatic on May 27 but still attended the protests.

Columbus Public Health is aware of a confirmed case of #COVID19 in an individual who was symptomatic on May 27, but still attended the protests in downtown Columbus. If you attended the protests, please monitor for symptoms and get a free COVID-19 test if you become sick.

— Columbus Health (@ColumbusHealth) June 3, 2020 Coronavirus in Ohio resources: const listItem = document.querySelector('.latestPost'); let requestURL = 'https://www.nbc4i.com/wp-json/wp/v2/posts?categories=64132'; let request = new XMLHttpRequest(); request.open('GET', requestURL); request.responseType = 'json'; request.send(); console.log(request.response); request.onload = function() { const page = request.response; populateHeadline(page); } function populateHeadline(jsonObj) { const myLink = document.createElement('a'); myLink.href = jsonObj[0].link; myLink.innerText = jsonObj[0].title.rendered; listItem.appendChild(myLink); }
Categories: Ohio News

Mosquito season has arrived, COVID-19 NOT spread through bites

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 14:00

LICKING COUNTY, Ohio (WCMH) — The most effective way to prevent mosquito-borne diseases, according to the Licking County Health Department (LCHD,) is to prevent being bitten by mosquitoes.

Diseases spread by mosquitoes are a concern in Ohio each year. Mosquito-borne diseases that may occur locally in Ohio include: Eastern equine encephalitis virus, La Crosse virus, St. Louis encephalitis virus, and West Nile virus. There are also several mosquito-borne diseases that Ohioans can acquire when traveling that could be brought back into Ohio: Chikungunya virus, Dengue, Japanese encephalitis virus, Malaria, Yellow fever, and Zika virus.

Being aware of mosquito and mosquito-borne disease activity in your area allows you to take action to protect yourself and others, avoid mosquitoes and mosquito bites, plan ahead for mosquitoes while traveling, and stop mosquitoes from breeding in and around your home.

Avoid Mosquitoes and Mosquito Bites Franklin County Will Spray For Mosquitoes This Week (Image 1)_9099
  • Use insect repellents when you go outdoors. Apply repellents on exposed skin that are registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). EPA-registered insect repellents are proven safe and effective, even for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
  • Wear clothing treated with permethrin or another EPA-registered repellent for extra protection.
  • Use products according to label instructions to optimize safety and effectiveness.
  • Don’t spray repellents on the skin under your clothing.
  • Take care during peak mosquito biting hours:
  • Take extra care to use repellents from dusk to dawn.
  • Wear light-colored clothing, long-sleeved shirts or jackets and long pants to protect against mosquito bites.
  • Consider avoiding outdoor activities during peak mosquito biting hours.
  • Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in an un-screened structure.
Stop Mosquitoes From Breeding In and Around Your Home FILE – In this Aug. 26, 2019, file photo, Salt Lake City Mosquito Abatement District biologist Nadja Reissen examines a mosquito in Salt Lake City. State and federal health officials are reporting a higher than usual number of deaths and illnesses from a rare, mosquito-borne virus this year. Eastern equine encephalitis has been diagnosed in a score of people in six states and several people have died so far this year. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer, File)
  • Don’t let mosquitoes breed around your home.
  • Empty standing water from flowerpots, buckets, barrels, tarps/covers and wheel barrows on a regular basis. Discard trash such as tin cans, plastic containers and other water-holding containers that have accumulated on your property.
  • Dispose of discarded tires properly.
  • Drill holes in tire swings so water drains out.
  • Change the water in pet dishes frequently.
  • Replace the water in bird baths weekly.
  • Check and clean clogged roof gutters at least twice annually so they will drain properly.
  • Aerate ornamental pools or stock them with mosquito-eating fish.
  • Clean and chlorinate swimming pools, even those that are not being used.
  • Keep children’s wading pools empty and on their sides when they aren’t being used.
  • Consider using products containing Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis (Bti), available at many garden and home improvement stores, to control mosquito larvae in containers that are too large to empty. Follow label instructions.
  • Stop mosquitoes from coming indoors: Install or repair screens on windows and doors. Use air conditioning, if you have it.

The Licking County Health Department practices an integrated pest management approach to mosquito control. This includes trapping for adults, dipping for larvae, treating standing water with larvicide, draining breeding sites when possible, and spraying to kill adult mosquitoes when needed.

LCHD sprays to kill adult mosquitoes when needed. Mosquito spraying occurs with weather permitting during dusk hours from an LCHD marked vehicle.

This week’s mosquito spraying schedule includes:
Thursday, June 4: Buckeye Lake KOA and Ramp Creek Mobile Home Park

Other County Health Department Links

Categories: Ohio News

DeWine: Ohio would not volunteer to host 2020 Republican National Convention

Channel 10 news - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 13:39

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WKYC) — As President Trump announced "he's forced to seek another state" for the upcoming 2020 Republican National Convention, could Ohio possibly be ready to host the event again?

Gov. Mike DeWine was asked that question during an interview on Fox News early Wednesday morning. DeWine said hosting an event of the RNC's magnitude "would not be something that we think that we would volunteer to do."

Here is statement to Fox News in full:

“I don’t know. These mass gatherings are kind of the last things to come together. A mass gathering inside is frankly the thing that would scare us the most, simply about the spread of this virus. The virus is still very, very much here. I don’t where we will be several months from now, but this would not be something that we think that we would volunteer to do. Mass gatherings are just a real problem, particularly those that are inside. The virus is still here. We have flattened the curve. Our hospital admissions is something we look at every single day. These numbers are fairly flat, but they’re not going down. We’ve reached a plateau. We’re opening up Ohio. We’re basically all open because we think we can do two things at once. We can protect community, but also at the same time we have to move forward economically.”

You can watch his entire interview here. His comments about the RNC come around the 2:38 mark.

DeWine made similar comments last week during his Thursday press conference saying Ohio is not yet prepared for large mass gatherings.

President Trump tweeted Tuesday night that he was looking for a new host city after North Carolina's Gov. said he couldn't guarantee a full capacity convention due to ongoing coronavirus concerns.

Ohio hosted the 2016 RNC in Cleveland.

Categories: Ohio News

OSU releases offer letter detailing terms of new president’s employment

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 13:32

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — The Ohio State University will pay incoming President Kristina Johnson PhD more than $1.4 million per year in base salary, bonuses and other benefits.

The university Wednesday released Dr. Johnson’s signed offer letter, dated May 19. Johnson was announced as the next OSU president on June 3.

According to that offer letter, Dr. Johnson will serve a five year term beginning September 1, 2020. The Board of Trustees has the option to extend that agreement for another five years.

Following her term as president, Dr. Johnson has the option to remain at Ohio State as a Distinguished University Professor.

Dr. Johnson will receive a base salary of $900,000. She is also eligible for up to 25% of her base salary in the form of an annual performance award. She will also receive an $85,000 fringe benefit allowance, a $200,000 yearly retirement plan contribution, $35,000 in moving expenses, and membership in two social clubs.

She will also be provided with $50,000 per year in research and education fund support.

Following her term as president, Dr. Johnson and her wife will be eligible for lifetime medical care under the Wexner Medical Center Executive Health Program. She will also have lifetime eligibility to purchase football and men’s basketball tickets for life.

For the last year of his contract, Dr. Michael Drake was paid a base salary of $870,000 with a similar package of benefits.

Tap here to read the entire offer letter.

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Ohio State President Kristina Johnson offer letter (Text)
Categories: Ohio News

Ohio Democrats push to declare racism a public health crisis

Channel 10 news - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 13:16

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Democratic lawmakers in Ohio have proposed legislation to declare racism a public health issue amid nationwide protest over the death of George Floyd.

The Ohio Legislative Black Caucus introduced the resolution Tuesday as the state grappled with demonstrations and a coronavirus pandemic that has disproportionately affected the black community.

If passed, the resolution would be the first of its kind at the state level, according to the lawmakers. But in the wake of the protests, counties in Ohio and elsewhere have made or are considering similar declarations. One has also been proposed in at least one other state.

“What we are witnessing around the country is a community simply begging to be seen and heard,” said Democratic Rep. Stephanie Howse, of Cleveland, and the caucus president. “Racism is real and it is the biggest public health threat citizens of color face.”

The death of Floyd, a black man who died in Minnesota after a white police officer pressed a knee into his neck for several minutes, has galvanized protesters across the country and called attention to issues of systemic racism.

House Minority Leader Emilia Sykes, who had singled out Republicans in the state for standing in the way of similar bills in the past, called for her colleagues in the House and Senate to “be on the right side of history" on Tuesday.

Republicans took issue with the criticism.

Sykes' complaints “conveniently overlooks” all of the bipartisan work that has been accomplished over the last year, Republican Rep. Bill Seitz, of Cincinnati, said in a statement to The Associated Press.

In Massachusetts, Democratic U.S. Rep. Ayanna Pressley and other elected officials of color outlined a series of steps Tuesday they say are needed to confront systemic racism in the state, including a public health declaration. The city of Boston proposed a public health resolution in early March.

Hamilton County Commissioner Victoria Parks announced this week that there will be a vote within the month on whether to officially declare racism a public health crisis in the third-most populous county in Ohio.

Hamilton is following the Franklin County Commissioners, who decided last month to join their health department in passing a similar resolution, in which they noted that black Ohioans have lower life expediencies than their white counterparts.

That's a point that Gov. Mike DeWine and Dr. Amy Acton, director of the state health department, reiterated during a coronavirus briefing Tuesday.

Recent data shows that for virus-related deaths in which race was reported, 17% of victims were black, even though the group makes up only 13% of the state's population.

Senate GOP President Larry Obhof plans to meet with members of the black caucus next week to discuss the resolution, said spokesman John Fortney.

Categories: Ohio News

Coronavirus in Ohio Wednesday update: 36,792 cases, 2,299 deaths

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 11:30

Watch Tuesday’s full Coronavirus in Ohio update from Gov. DeWine and Dr. Acton in the video

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Governor DeWine will not hold a briefing Wednesday on coronavirus in Ohio, but the Ohio Department of Health released the latest data available on cases in Ohio this afternoon shortly before 2 p.m.

As of Wednesday, there are a total of 36,792 (+442) cases reported in Ohio, leading to 2,299 (+41) deaths and 6,251 (+75) hospitalizations. Of those hospitalized, 1,604 (+21) required intensive care.

DeWine, Lt. Gov. Husted, and Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton held a briefing Tuesday afternoon. Their next briefing will be on Thursday.

The Department of Health adds the data as soon as it is informed of a case or death. The information is backdated to the actual date the person started exhibiting symptoms or the date the person died.

Governor DeWine said Tuesday they have been working with the Department of Education on reopening Ohio schools. The state fully intends to have school in the fall. The start dates is up to individual boards of education.

The state is working on a broad outline of health guidelines for schools.

DeWine also announced that all surgeries in Ohio can resume. Facilities must continue to monitor their PPE stockpile. The use of telehealth is still encouraged whenever possible.

Daycares in Ohio were officially allowed to reopen Sunday, as long as they follow guidelines by the state to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced Saturday that the order to reopen the daycare providers was signed by Ohio Director of Health Dr. Amy Acton.

At last Thursday’s briefing, DeWine announced the state is expanding its criteria for who can get tested for coronavirus. He also touched on the role of pharmacists, as they are at the front line of our health care system. DeWine said the Ohio Pharmacy Board will allow pharmacists to order and administer COVID-19 tests in Ohio.

Starting June 8, assisted living facilities and intermediate care facilities for people with developmental disabilities can allow outside visitation in Ohio. As for visitation in nursing homes, DeWine says we’re not there yet. DeWine said they will continue to lift restrictions slowly if things go well. Facilities will be asked to create a plan for social distancing, masks and taking the temperature of visitors.

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Categories: Ohio News

WATCH LIVE: City Attorney Zach Klein, community leaders announce plan to improve police-community relations

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 10:54

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – Columbus City Attorney Zach Klein will be joined by community leaders to announce plans to reform the culture of justice Wednesday afternoon.

Klein, Elder Larry Price, Stephanie Hightower and Pastor Frederick LaMarr outlined the steps listed below they say are needed to immediately start assessing and improving police-community relations in the city.

PROTEST RESPONSE AND CROWD CONTROL PROCEDURES:

  1. Appoint special counsel to perform an independent, outside investigation and review of the City of Columbus’ handling of the past week’s events.
  2. Conduct a review of Columbus Division of Police policies and procedures regarding the clearing of streets during peaceful demonstrations in order to avoid unnecessary confrontations between law enforcement and those exercising their First Amendment rights.
  3. Change the Columbus Division of Police policies on using chemical agents to comport with best practices as identified by Matrix Consulting, thereby ending broad use of chemical agents against nonviolent protesters and requiring verbal warnings.
  4. The Columbus City Attorney’s Office has submitted evidence to the Internal Affairs Bureau (IAB) and will continue to do so as it is gathered. To date, we have submitted photos and videos of uses of chemical agents being used on protestors, the widely seen images of the man standing passively with his hands up as he is being maced in the face, and more. We encourage members of the public to do the same. We also request members of the public submit to police any and all evidence they may have that could potentially identify individuals or groups inciting violence and destruction so that we can hold those individuals accountable. Evidence can be submitted to the Department of Public Safety’s Equal Opportunity Compliance Office at reportCPD@columbus.gov or directly to IAB at IABDeskSgt@columbuspolice.org.

SYSTEMIC CHANGES TO IMPROVE POLICE-COMMUNITY RELATIONS:

  1. Create a Citizen Review Board, as recommended by the Community Safety Commission. The current FOP contract places limitations on how this can be fully implemented in the short-term. Accordingly, the Columbus City Attorney’s Office is reviewing the current FOP contract to identify immediate opportunities where civilian review can be implemented.
  2. Move charging decisions for alleged misdemeanor criminal offenses to the Columbus City Attorney’s Office for review before they are filed, similar to the charging process for the Franklin County Prosecutor with felony offenses. Officers will still have the immediate ability to arrest in a violent situation, but then the City Attorney’s Office, through its charging process, will assure only appropriate charges are then filed. Citizens being charged for most non-violent offenses will receive a summons for court instead of being incarcerated prior to trial.
  3. Conduct a review of the Columbus City Code relating to traffic and pedestrian offenses and examine how enforcement of those offenses can have an adverse impact on building trust between the police and the Black community.
  4. Dedicate additional hours to the Columbus Division of Police’s training program, separate from the current curriculum, for an immersion experience that helps build a relationship between the officers and the communities they serve prior to graduation. The purpose of these hours is for recruits to spend time building relationships and a commitment to those neighbors and community leaders, not in a law enforcement capacity but in public service, before they begin policing. The Columbus City Attorney’s team who works directly with those communities will serve as a resource for officers learning about the unique struggles of those neighborhoods.
Categories: Ohio News

Defense Secretary opposes using active-duty troops to police U.S. protests

Channel 10 news - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 10:40

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defense Secretary Mark Esper is breaking with President Donald Trump, saying he opposes using active-duty military forces for law enforcement duties in the U.S.

Trump has raised that possibility, though the White House has cooled on the idea as protests have calmed in the past two days.

Esper says active-duty troops in a law enforcement role should be used in the United States “only in the most urgent and dire of situations,” adding, “We are not in one of those situations now.”

He spoke as Trump took credit for a massive deployment of National Guard troops and federal law enforcement officers to the nation’s capital, saying it offered a model to states on how to quell protests nationwide.

Categories: Ohio News

‘Can’t Stop Us:’ Columbus City Schools honors graduates with billboards

News Channel 4 - Wed, 06/03/2020 - 09:24

COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) – The class of 2020 is adopting the mantra, “Can’t Stop Us” as Columbus City Schools seniors prepare for an historic graduation.

Wednesday, the message debuted on 14 electronic billboards across the city. The red signs also feature a silhouette made of the names of the district’s 21 high schools and a thank you to community sponsors. The billboards are the latest in a community-wide celebration for the 2020 graduates. Earlier in the week, district leaders dropped off more than 1,800 yard signs at students’ homes.

“June is always supposed to be a month of celebration for seniors who are graduating. And we wanted to make sure this June was no different.. Even though we know things are somewhat different from years past,” said Scott Varner, a spokesperson for Columbus City Schools.

The COVID-19 health crisis sidelined many traditional events and celebrations and forced classes online. The district formed a group of CCS seniors to develop recommendations for commencement and ways to celebrate the graduating class.

“We’ve made sure to listen to our seniors… everything from a virtual town hall to really having groups of our seniors give us ideas, give us their thoughts about how they want to see this celebration done,” Varner explained.

In addition to the billboards and yard signs, the district is also planning a military flyover and a special City Hall lighting in honor of the Class of 2020. All seniors will also receive a “Celebration Box” with gifts and a T-shirt. The district is encouraging students and community members to show their support by posting messages, photos and videos on social media with the hashtag #CCSGrad2020.

All CCS high school commencement ceremonies will be held online with virtual watch parties between June 22-27. Find the full streaming schedule here and complete information for the CCS Class of 2020 here.

Varner said, “It is very different from what we all thought it was going to be a few months ago, but this is still going to be a great celebration across the city.”

Categories: Ohio News

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