State Rep. and Ohio Legislative Black Caucus (OLBC) President Alicia Reece (D-Cincinnati) will join OLBC members, community leaders and citizens from around the state for the OLBC’s fourth Annual Day of Action next Wednesday, February 24, at the Riffe Center Capitol Theatre Lobby from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
This year’s event will highlight the OLBC’s 2016 agenda on issues that are important to Ohio’s African American community – including voting rights, jobs and economic opportunities, criminal justice reform, infant mortality, and more.
“As we celebrate black history month, citizens from all over the state will gather at their capitol to make their voices heard. Our constituents, the people of Ohio, are tired of sitting on the sidelines, waiting for the legislature to act on issues like justice reform, voting rights, economic opportunity and infant mortality,” said Reece. “That is why we will be calling for action to effect positive change on a statewide level to make sure the future looks brighter for African Americans in Ohio. As we enter the new year, African-American unemployment remains double the state average and black babies are dying at twice the rate of white babies. We must move beyond just words by taking action to help address the challenges faced by the African American community in Ohio.”
WHAT: The Ohio Legislative Black Caucus Annual Day of Action
WHO: Ohio Legislative Black Caucus, advocates, activists, faith community
WHEN: Wednesday, Feb. 24
10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
State Reps. Jack Cera (D-Bellaire) and John M. Rogers (D-Mentor-on-the-Lake) today announced House Bill (HB) 58, legislation to encourage drivers to yield to sanitation and recycling vehicles, passed favorably out of the Ohio House with bipartisan support.
State Reps. Michael Sheehy (D-Oregon) and John Patterson (D-Jefferson) today applauded passage from the House of legislation to establish the “Annie Glenn Communication Disorders Awareness Day” in honor of Mrs. Annie Glenn and to recognize all Ohioans who struggle with a communication disorder. House Bill 431, sponsored by Reps. Sheehy and Patterson, designates February 17, Annie Glenn’s birthday, as the official day of recognition.
“Today, the Ohio House of Representatives celebrated Annie Glenn’s 96th birthday by honoring her as an advocate for communication disorders,” said Sheehy. “Afflicted with a severe stutter, Annie Glenn overcame her disorder and become a role model for others facing a similar challenge.”
State Rep. Stephen Slesnick (D-Canton) today applauded the passage of House Bill 87, legislation to honor Moses Fleetwood Walker, the nation’s first professional African American baseball player. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Slesnick, designates Walker’s birthday of October 7 as “Moses Fleetwood Walker Day” in the state of Ohio.
"Walker overcame prejudice and discrimination to break into professional baseball during the Jim Crow-era," said Slesnick. "His legacy as one of the first professional African American athletes is an inspiration to all of us today."
State Rep. Teresa Fedor (D-Toledo) testified Thursday at the Ohio Constitutional Modernization Commission (OCMC) Committee on Education, calling for a return to Ohio’s all-elected state school board model. Fedor, the highest-ranking Democrat on the House Education Committee, was invited to come before the OCMC after state school board President Tom Gunlock, an appointee of Gov. Kasich, recently proposed ridding the board of locally elected members.
“A political appointee cannot be the voice of the parents, teachers and students. We have seen political appointees in our state education system illegally scrub data and make decisions based on special interests instead of the best interests of our children,” said Fedor. “An all-elected board would hold educational trustees accountable by putting the power back in the hands of parents and The People.”
State Rep. Kevin L. Boyce (D-Columbus) today asked Gov. John Kasich to veto recently passed House Bill 294, legislation that seeks to defund Planned Parenthood in Ohio.
Five years ago this month, Senate Bill 5 was introduced in the Ohio Senate to strip workers of their right to come together and speak with one voice to negotiate fairer wages and safer workplaces.
In the months that followed, tens of thousands of Ohioans from all walks of life traveled to Columbus to rally against the extreme measure, and that fall voters sent a clear message to politicians at the Statehouse when they soundly overturned Issue 2 at the ballot box.
Despite the overwhelming rejection of SB5/Issue 2, Ohio’s working families continue to face legislative attempts by Republicans to gut the prevailing wage law, slash workers’ unemployment compensation benefits to give employers a tax cut, and restrict workers’ right to collectively bargain for fair wages and safe workplaces.
State Rep. Kent Smith (D-Euclid) today applauded the passage of House Bill (HB) 405, legislation to increase the safety of Ohio children by strengthening penalties against sexual predators.
“This legislation will help protect Ohio’s most valuable asset – our children,” said Smith, a primary sponsor of the bill. “Internet predators in Ohio need to know there will be consequences for their despicable actions. This legislation will put predators behind bars and help keep our kids safe.”
State Rep. John Patterson (D-Jefferson) today announced the introduction of legislation to establish a three-day sales tax “holiday” during the first weekend of August for “back-to-school” clothing and school supplies. Not only will the holiday help offset Ohio’s 4.5 percent sales tax increase enacted by the 2013 state budget, but for three days shoppers will pay no sales tax on itemized purchases as they prepare their children for the coming of the new school year. A similar proposal launched Ohio’s first temporary sales tax holiday in August 2015.
The Central Seventh-day Adventist Church of Columbus, Ohio honored Rep. Hearcel Craig (D-Columbus) Saturday with the Black History Achievement Award. Rep. Craig received the award during the Church’s Worship Experience.