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Republicans Are Urging Communities and Their Safety Forces to Interact More

Reps. Cindy Abrams, Haraz Ghanbari, Brian Baldridge, Phil Plummer, Thomas Hall, Rodney Creech, Jeff LaRe
Karen Kasler
Statehouse News Bureau
Rep. Haraz Ghanbari (R-Perrysburg), center, talks about ride-alongs at a press conference with several Republican House colleagues, including Brian Baldridge (R-Winchester) and Phil Plummer (R-Butler Township). Baldridge is a firefighter/paramedic in his district, and Plummer was the Montgomery County Sheriff from 2008 to 2018.

Some Republican lawmakers are urging communities and members of their safety forces to come together to better understand each other.

Republican Rep. Haraz Ghanbari (R-Perrysburg) wants community leaders to ride along with police, have coffee with cops, and go through local citizen police academies. He says he’s doing that with his kids.

“When they want to talk about superheroes, we don’t turn on some afternoon cartoon. We hop into the car and go to the local fire station. We go to the highway patrol post. We stop by and say hi to our sheriff,” Ghanbari said.

Ghanbari says $10 million in the new state budget for body cameras can help too. But a Democrat-backed bill to require body cameras for all officers has had no hearings. And some activists have raised concerns about body cameras being used for surveillance, not accountability.
Copyright 2021 The Statehouse News Bureau. To see more, visit The Statehouse News Bureau.

Jo Ingles is a professional journalist who covers politics and Ohio government for the Ohio Public Radio and Television for the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau. She reports on issues of importance to Ohioans including education, legislation, politics, and life and death issues such as capital punishment. Jo started her career in Louisville, Kentucky in the mid 80’s when she helped produce a televised presidential debate for ABC News, worked for a creative services company and served as a general assignment report for a commercial radio station. In 1989, she returned back to her native Ohio to work at the WOSU Stations in Columbus where she began a long resume in public radio.