Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther held a news conference as a call to action for everyone in the community for improvements in police reform and racial equality in the city.
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In his statement, Mayor Ginter took a stance saying he does not support the defunding police but does support change and reform. He went over many ways he is going about making changes in the community including:
- The creation of a hotline for community complaints, an independent law firm to review, and a separate law agency outside of Columbus to also assist.
- The creation of a civilian review board
- Implementing police bodycam improvements
Mayor Ginther has also called on several groups of people to help with change:
- Called for officers to intervene if they see an officer being unethical.
- Calling on the Fraternal Order of Police to be part of the solution. Mayor Ginter was quoted saying “you’re either with us or against the community”
- Calling for people of Columbus to help change by voting
- Calling for the media to continue to report the stories but from all angles.
During his address, the mayor said that he himself has made mistakes during these times. One example he gave was that he should have acted earlier when the protest started. Mayor Ginther went on to say that he felt officers were treating peaceful and violent protestors the same way. He had a conversation with the chief of police to address this issue, “I should have acted sooner” but believes this issue improved after the talk.
When asked about the use of pepper spray this past weekend in relation to his ban, Mayor Ginther stated that the use of pepper spray is allowed when someone is being violent. But in a targeted manner at the subject that is breaking the law.
Watch his full address to the community below:
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