Why is it that some number of people want to deprive members of the LGBTQ community of the fundamental rights that everyone else enjoys? What’s so hard about recognizing the humanity of the LGBTQ community? Listen to Densil Porteous, executive director of Stonewall Columbus, talk about how he uses grace and patience to help people move beyond the social constructs they’ve learned and his efforts to change the hearts of those who think the LGBTQ community should be treated differently.
Ohio houses some 50,000 men and women in its penitentiaries. Former warden Christine Money describes life inside the walls and an innovative program she now directs that helps inmates successfully reenter society. Some of these former offenders have been inside the walls for over 35 years, and almost all of them are doing exceptionally well.
It’s no secret that some parts of metro Columbus make it tough to succeed because of crime and lack of resources. Amy Klaben, project facilitator for Move to Prosper, tells us about the success 10 single mothers and their children are having now that they’re relocated from low-income, low-resource neighborhoods to neighborhoods that provide more opportunities. You really can move to prosper.
Jonathan Groner is a pediatric surgeon and the medical director of the Center for Pediatric Trauma Research at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, who has been vocal in his opposition to the Death Penalty. This isn’t just an academic exercise for Dr. Groner. He’s been to Death Row and examined Death Row inmates whose executions were botched. Listen to him describe the Hippocratic Paradox that medical professionals face when asked to assist with executions and explain why the Death Penalty should be abolished.
Civil rights attorney Fred Gittes and three other law firms are suing the Columbus Police Department, alleging the police used excessive force in responding to last summer’s protests. What’s behind the problem, according to Fred? Racial discrimination. What’s at risk? Our First Amendment rights.
The Covid-19 pandemic has put millions of Americans out of work, which means tenants can’t pay their rent and landlords can’t pay their mortgage loans. The Centers for Disease Control has intervened with an eviction moratorium, and the feds have stepped with with financial assistance. Still, the crisis continues. Columbus Legal Aid attorney Holly Lovey explains what’s happening.
The air is warming, and the seas are arising. We’re heating up the Earth to a dangerous level, and the consequences are more hurricanes and forest fires, the dislocation of people who are abandoning their homelands because they’re turning into deserts, and our own national security. Listen to scientist Steve Rissing break down the problem in simple speak.
Hunger is a big issue in central Ohio, just as it is nationwide. The Mid-Ohio Food Collective serves 780,000 people annually in 20 counties, and the need for food assistance is growing. In just the last eight months 45,000 people who never before needed food assistance now do. The problem? Wages aren’t keeping pace with the rest of the economy. Listen to the conversation.
Attorney John Fitch has taken on the cases of two women who were raped. One was 15 years old when raped, and the other was 11. The juries awarded $3.5 million and $20 million, respectively, in the two cases for the trauma these women suffered and still suffer. But state law caps the damages a plaintiff can recover in a personal injury action, and the very few exceptions that allow the caps to be lifted don’t cover rape. As a result, the damages for each woman were reduced to $250,000, and from that sum, attorney fees and litigation expenses are deducted.
Fitch talks about the unfairness of the so called “tort reform” law that passed in 2005 and how the Ohio Supreme Court has ruled the law is constitutional. “Tort reform” is a misnomer, as the law does only one thing: it undercuts the rights of people who are injured. There are powerful forces behind tort reform, namely business interests and insurance companies.
Rep. Kristin Boggs (D-Columbus) has introduced a bill that would remove at least some of the unfairness in the law. But it’s an uphill battle.