Community investment: Josh believes that the current city council and mayor aren't investing enough or equally in all the neighborhoods. We need higher investments in the black and immigrant neighborhoods. Take for example North High School. As Josh served as an election manager for 5 years there, he has seen the disrepair and lack of air conditioning in many parts of the building. Why have all the other neighborhoods gotten new schools, while we leave North behind? Meanwhile, North falls well below the graduation rate of the others in the district. While we pave the roads downtown and build statues, the roads in the poor, black, and immigrant neighborhoods are riddled with potholes, that destroy our tires and cars and cost us money. Let's divert money from the downtown area back into our community's, where people continue to suffer from the poor infrastructure of the roads, schools, lead water pipes and others.
Emergency Mental Healthcare: Josh believes in access to urgent mental health services. There should be a special mental health emergency unit within the EMS. This would be a psychologist, who can respond to mental health and addiction crises. This would include delivery of Naloxone. This will assist in saving time for police and EMS in providing Naloxone and responding to mental health emergencies. Also, this would be a way for victims or crime, fire, and medical emergencies to receive immediate counseling and mental health first aid. Further, this will build trust between police and the mentally ill and addicted communities. Because police will be having less negative interactions with the mentally ill, and not arresting drug users, we can build trust with law enforcement while helping people at the same time. This is a revolutionary way to think about mental health.
Police reform: Josh Schaffer will make Akron safer. He will start by giving our brave first responders a raise from the marijuana tax. A new system will be set up to give raises to officers without citizen complaints. All police in Akron will be required to take basic mental health and de-escalation training. Each shift will have a psychologist on duty to respond to psychiatric emergencies, and provide psychological first aid to victims of crime, medical emergencies and fire. This will be a win win for police and people, and for our friends, family and neighbors with mental illness. Police will be compassionate with the general public, and still tough on crime. This brings a balance between police reform, and pro police agendas. Akron will be at the forefront of modern policing and be a model for other urban cities. Josh believes that the University of Akron Police should be dissolved or integrated with the city police force. Instead of locking up students for marijuana and alcohol, and ruining their careers with a criminal record, we could have more officers fighting crime. Josh will expand the special drug and mental health courts. That’s the plan for Josh Schaffer to make Akron safer.
Marijuana reform: Josh’s plan to make Akron safer, bring justice to the community and make Akron prosperous is to try to legalize marijuana within the city limits. This will free up officer time for more violent crimes, and ultimately a safer city. Even if logistically, and legally he is unable to legalize marijuana, Josh will take the following executive actions on marijuana:
Green new deal: Akron should create a 100% renewable municipal power plant, and provide electricity as a city utility (similar to Cleveland Public Power). This keeps electric prices low, creates jobs, and protects our local air quality, and the environment at large. The goal is that all Akron government buildings will have solar panels. We will work together with the University of Akron, to install solar panels on their various buildings and parking lots. Furthermore, the university will be able to maintain their solar panels and wind turbines, through green jobs training. This way people will receive job training, get jobs, stay in Akron, keep our environment clean, and contribute to what will be the most prosperous local economy in the USA. By being at the forefront, a leader in urban green technology, Akron will attract new residents, employees and businesses.
Drug reform: Drug addiction is a mental illness called Substance Abuse Disorder. Until we address it with dignity and healthcare, we will never solve the drug crisis. It will be the policy of the police department not to arrest end users of drugs. Police may cite and release. They will contact the emergency mental health and addiction care unit. They will provide appropriate resources to help the person. Helping people with addiction makes our city safer, by reducing nonviolent, mentally ill people in jail and tying up the criminal justice system. Also, this will help the economy by having people return to work without a conviction and with a treated addiction. People can be productive, contribute to the tax base, and keep our resources focused on criminals. Treating addicted people is the only way to reduce demand, to get the drugs off our streets.
Parks Expansion: Studies show that planting trees in urban areas reduces air pollution. Summit County Land Bank nearly gives away properties. Josh Schaffer will make Akron's air safer, by obtaining properties within Akron from the land bank, and plant trees and community gardens. All sites would have fruit trees, as a self sustaining method of free, healthy food for anybody who needs food. These properties can also be fitted with solar and wind devices to contribute to the new green economy. The properties would be run by the parks department, who will save money, by finding neighbors to volunteer to do yard work, making our communities more beautiful and healthy. Could you kindly donate to help Josh clean up the local environment?
Josh means jobs: Josh will create the greatest economy in Akron history, by bold environmental action. Also, Josh will offer tax breaks to the Akron based tire companies to move their manufacturing from China, back to Akron. It will be the policy of the city to only buy tires from Akron companies, and Josh will work with state and local elected officials to buy Akron made tires. Josh believes in a balance of bringing back manufacturing, and also creating new green jobs. All city buildings will be equipped with renewable energy, which creates jobs, and lowers the city’s electric bills. We would work with the University of Akron, to be a world leader in being a green city. By finding the perfect balance between manufacturing and new era jobs, and legalizing marijuana in the city, Josh Schaffer will create the most thriving economy in Akron history! Josh will make Akron the most prosperous, and environmentally friendly urban city in America!
Term Limits: The longest serving mayor served for 28 years. Josh Schaffer believes that 8 years is enough. Mayor Horrigan will have had 8 years of service on election day. Its time to try something new, and bold! Josh won’t run anymore after being mayor 8 years.
Accident Ticket Forgiveness: When you are in an accident, you want the police to help, not rub it in. Our police will implement ticket forgiveness for a first offense. This will allow them to clear accidents more quickly, and move on to fight violent criminals. That’s how Josh Schaffer makes Akron safer. This doesn't mean not writing tickets, or letting people speed. Akron's streets will still be safe, and tickets still issued to unsafe drivers who have caused multiple accidents. By donating $50 to Joshua Schaffer’s campaign, that’s less than the cost of a ticket. Can we count on your donation to help Josh Schaffer make Akron safer?
No traffic cameras: Traffic cameras are currently only used in school zones. Instead of cameras, we should have police taking radar, and positively interacting with the students and community. If you agree that we should get rid of the cameras, the only way is to elect Josh Schaffer. We need money to keep this campaign going. Could you donate $50? That’s less than a ticket, and ensures police are at our schools and community policing.
Universal Healthcare: All residents of Akron will have access to healthcare services. By working with local hospitals, building a city owned facility, and allowing people to join the municipal employees' group policy, we can keep Akron safe and healthy. Healthcare is a human right, and Josh Schaffer will make Akron safer, by making our neighbors healthier.
Modesty: Josh is just your average Joe (average Josh if you will). An hourly private sector employee, Josh has supervisory experience with the same company for 15 years. His degree in Political Science and Criminal Justice, minor in psychology, and minor in Criminal Justice, gives him the combination of education and experience. Josh will take the bus to work. You read correctly. A mayor should interact with the people every single day. Josh will spend 2 hours every business day, at various workplaces, hospitals, health facilities and at the university, listening to people. Josh promises to work with city employees to try different jobs. That's right. He will work alongside his employees. He will, for example, spend a day as a garbage collector, a water worker, and ride along with first responders. Josh believes in being a working supervisor, and promises to occasionally be out on the job, working with city employees. All city jobs are equally important as the mayor's. This revolutionary way of governing, should not be revolutionary at all. He believes that being mayor is not a desk job. The government is for the people, and Josh will spend time in the community.