Head shot of young black woman with short curly hair smiling
The city’s leaders are failing the Black community in Columbus. There is an unacceptable lack of economic investment in predominantly Black neighborhoods throughout the city. Meanwhile, tax breaks are lavished on wealthy developers in the Short North and Easton, creating levels of segregation based on race and income and wealth that are virtually unparalleled across the country. At the same time, City Council continues to support the violent and overly aggressive tactics of the Columbus Police Department in these same communities.

Data from January 2013 to June 2016 shows that the Columbus Police Department (CPD) have killed a higher rate of black people than any other major city in the country.  The family of Henry Green, victims of police brutality, have consistently been denied justice as the viral video of the officer who shot and killed their son still did not result in the termination of his position. The city’s callous decision to continue to invest an additional $750,000 in the failed Summer Safety Initiative, which targets low-income, minority communities with excessive policing, reflects the leaderships’ willingness to allow these tragic stories to continue to happen. The families of Tyre King and Jaron Thomas and many others continue to search in vain for answers and for accountability.

We need our city’s elected leaders on City Council to invest in community-led policing programs, and economic development that benefits every resident of Columbus. That is why I’m supporting new leadership for City Council. Jasmine Ayres, a candidate endorsed by Yes We Can Columbus has a bold vision and a strong mission. Having spent the last year organizing with the Jasmine and People's Justice Project I know that she is committed to listening to the people and working collectively to heal our communities.

It’s time Columbus dropped ‘business as usual’ and elect leaders willing to fight for all communities.   -Tamika Fenney, wife, mother and organizer with the People's Justice Project