Fund our kids’ social and educational support – Don’t fund police to beat them down.

Fund our kids’ social and educational support – Don’t fund police to beat them down.

June 3, 2020

Imagine what $30 million every year could do for Ann Arbor’s community development, for example Ann Arbor’s Jobs Corp program — run by the Neutral Zone — to get every kid ready for college, get them into college, get their college paid for, and launch them into a good job. Instead of paying $30 million a year to scare the daylights out of Black Ann Arbor with armed police.

Imagine what $100 billion every year could do nationwide if spent the same way.

To be clear, I am for funding our social support needs instead of the police. I am for getting the youth installed in college and then a good job – not into jail. 

Again, I am against funding the police. Our current system of policing is deeply racist, violent and militarized. For civilian use, a new system of policing must be created. A system that focuses on protection of the public and de-escalation of crises rather than the orientation of an occupying army. Minneapolis is already in the process of dismantling the police and replacing it with social workers and mental health workers.

The biggest piece of the general fund budget in Ann Arbor is the police department ($30.7 million). Community development has only one sixth of that ($5 million). As a city, we must start taking steps to channel that $30 million towards community development. That means beginning the process of reallocating resources, funding, and responsibility away from police and toward the kind of law and order already enjoyed by the rich: Access to good education, academic mentoring, job placement, day care, after-school programs and classes.

 

The Cream of Society – and their representatives in Lansing – don’t expect to be policed. They expect communities of color to be starved and “proactively” policed into submission, and limited to a minimum wage of $9.65 an hour.

The Cream of Society already has instant access to tangible power for their kids– that means education at all levels, the lifetime cash contacts that come from four years at U-M or Harvard, jobs, health care, and mental health services that low-income communities are often denied. The Cream of Society have their lives laid out for them. Their work pays them royally. Who do you think is bagging your groceries and catching COVID-19? Not the Cream of Society.

When the Cream of Society plunders (for example, by keeping a generation of Black New Yorkers away from nice apartments), when the nation’s financial and political leaders keep the wealth flowing so much upwards, and so little downward, that sweet setup takes $100 billion a year to maintain — $100 billion a year in policing.

Trump is the poster boy for that. Sued for racially discriminatory housing practices, and defeated and defiant and victorious at the highest levels of business and politics.

 

He rose to the top of American political power and became a billionaire even after he howled for the blood of the Central Park defendants, even after he rose to fame by casting doubt on whether the first Black President was really born in America or not. 

In other words, it is no accident that $100 billion is spent nationally on policing and millions of Black parents have to give their sons “The Talk” to remind them that they are utterly without protection in this society. Utterly and completely naked to being shot by police, even if on their best behavior. Proof: Philando Castile.

The rich don’t need to endure police visits if they have a mental health crisis. Such vital resources that are readily available to the rich should be available to everyone. The police should not be the first responder to a mental health crisis, unless a weapon is involved. They are not equipped to deal with those crises. The only proper first responders, to mental health situations, should be mental health providers and social workers.

 

The most economically vulnerable residents must rely on Ann Arbor’s Community Development Unit for the delivery of housing, economic development and human services.

So the more we fund Ann Arbor’s Community Development Unit, and the less we fund the police, the better.

————————————————————

Oversight

 

Until the police are finally replaced with social workers, the Ann Arbor police oversight commission should be empowered to fire police chiefs, pick a pool of finalists to replace police chiefs, and have equal say on discipline handed down to police officers.

————————————————————

 

Police interactions with ICE

 Immigration infractions should not be treated as crimes. To the maximum extent allowed by law, Ann Arbor shouldn’t help ICE escalate confrontations with undocumented workers. In fact, Ann Arbor should discontinue any intergovernmental agreement with ICE. Ann Arbor should implement incarceration prevention measures for minor offenses like a broken tail light.

————————————————————

I am against having police in schools

School is no place for the police. I advocate for police-free schools. Ann Arbor, and all cities, should follow the example of the superintendent of the Portland, Oregon Public Schools by replacing police – called school resource officers (SRO’s) — with counselors and social workers.

Students feel less safe at schools with visible security measures, adding that students report feeling more fear if they attend schools with SRO’s.

Instead of imitating a jail atmosphere, schools need to offer students the emotional, and mental health supports they need to thrive. Rich kids have that. I say everyone should have that. Providing support to students can help them feel safer, cope more effectively, and ultimately be better able to focus on learning and developing.

There is a constellation of support which a thin layer of privileged kids get, which launches them into U-M and into power positions in society. I aim to get that constellation of support (education, mentoring, full tuition payments, real jobs) funded for every kid who needs it.

What the kids of our community don’t need is more police beating them down to make way for the Cream of Society. Billionaires need cops (100 billion dollars’ worth of cops across the U.S.) to carve them a clear path to the goodies in this pandemic time.

Schools are failing to address students’ mental health needs. It’s wrong to shift resources away from social workers and towards school security guards. These shifts reflect the national habit of policing, as minority students are more likely than white students to attend schools with security guards but no social workers.

————————————————————

I am against ‘proactive’ policing

 

During his run for Mayor, Jack Eaton (the Ward 4 incumbent) posted this on his campaign website: “I regularly seek to add police officers to allow for proactive policing, including traffic enforcement and downtown beat officers.”

I completely disagree with adding police. I completely disagree with any “proactive policing” too. That generally means displaying a police presence and creating a panic situation. 

“Proactive policing” often means the abhorrent practice of stopping and frisking nonwhite urban residents. I’m against that. The Crea of Society doesn’t have to endure that. Neither should the rest of us.

https://twitter.com/Mozhgan4Council

 

“Mozhgan Savabieasfahani, an environmental toxicologist who is running for council, urged city officials to look to lessons learned in other countries and set up field hospitals now.”

* See full coverage in MLive, March 17, 2020, at https://www.mlive.com/news/ann-arbor/2020/03/heres-what-ann-arbors-state-of-emergency-declaration-means-for-the-city.html 

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To: Mayor Taylor and Ann Arbor City Council Regarding: DC-1 19-1887 - "Resolution Supporting the Environmental Protection Agency’s Active Involvement with the Gelman Site and Encouraging its Listing of the same as a “Superfund” Site"   Your vote, wishing for a...
Ann Arbor needs to prepare field hospitals now!

Ann Arbor needs to prepare field hospitals now!

March 22, 2020

To the Ann Arbor City Council, Mayor, and Human Rights Commission, with a copy to the news media:

I am still the only candidate for Ann Arbor City Council, 4th Ward, who is on the ballot. I am also the closest thing to representation which Ward 4 now has, as of the March 16th City Council meeting. No other candidate or sitting representative even showed up to that City Council meeting — only I attended, and I spoke as well, demanding that field hospitals be prepared before our existing hospitals are swamped with COVID-19 cases.

Today, I still urge the Ann Arbor City Council to prepare field hospitals before our existing hospitals are overwhelmed with COVID-19 victims.
I have also asked Washtenaw County Commission members why they can’t do the same.

In no case has any Ann Arbor City Councilmember, or any Washtenaw County Commission member, agreed to initiate the preparation of field hospitals. None of them have even agreed to advocate for that urgent action.

They need to get busy now, filing a Letter of Intent for an emergency Certificate of Need with the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Certificate of Need Commission.

Unfortunately, since that Commission’s next scheduled meeting is not until June 18, 2020, our local authorities will also have to seek emergency approval directly from MDHHS to prepare a field hospital in Ann Arbor, unless they have a better plan, such as convincing the Governor to seek help from the U.S. Army:

In race against coronavirus spread, Cuomo asks feds to build eight hospitals in downstate region

Military field hospitals on way to state to meet projected need for hospital beds

In Madrid, the government is preparing a field hospital for 5,500 patients right now: https://www.thelocal.es/20200322/madrid-turns-conference-centre-into-big-field-hospital

And in Stockholm now: https://www.thelocal.se/20200322/a-field-hospital-will-be-built-in-stockholm-to-prepare-for-more-coronavirus-cases

In other words, the City Council needs to act now to get us a field hospital, before our existing hospitals are overwhelmed.

Mozhgan Savabieasfahani, PhD
Candidate for City Council, 4th Ward.
March 22, 2020

“Mozhgan Savabieasfahani, an environmental toxicologist who is running for council, urged city officials to look to lessons learned in other countries and set up field hospitals now.”

* See full coverage in MLive, March 17, 2020, at https://www.mlive.com/news/ann-arbor/2020/03/heres-what-ann-arbors-state-of-emergency-declaration-means-for-the-city.html 

Fund our kids’ social and educational support – Don’t fund police to beat them down.

June 3, 2020 Imagine what $30 million every year could do for Ann Arbor’s community development, for example Ann Arbor's Jobs Corp program -- run by the Neutral Zone -- to get every kid ready for college, get them into college, get their college paid for, and launch...

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Statement by Dr. Mozhgan to the Ann Arbor City Council, the Mayor and the Human Rights Commission

Ann Arbor, Michigan: US sanctions are killing Iranians during a global pandemic. Listen to the outcry demanding an immediate stop to all sanctions on Iran to protect lives. See the articles on the subject which have been released in recent days; some are referenced...

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Statement urging the City of Ann Arbor to immediately clean up the toxic Gelman Dioxane Plume

To: Mayor Taylor and Ann Arbor City Council Regarding: DC-1 19-1887 - "Resolution Supporting the Environmental Protection Agency’s Active Involvement with the Gelman Site and Encouraging its Listing of the same as a “Superfund” Site"   Your vote, wishing for a...

Statement by Dr. Mozhgan to the Ann Arbor City Council, the Mayor and the Human Rights Commission

Statement by Dr. Mozhgan to the Ann Arbor City Council, the Mayor and the Human Rights Commission

Ann Arbor, Michigan: US sanctions are killing Iranians during a global pandemic. Listen to the outcry demanding an immediate stop to all sanctions on Iran to protect lives. See the articles on the subject which have been released in recent days; some are referenced below.
In Ann Arbor, we can easily do our part to save 80 million Iranians from sanctions-induced death during this pandemic. Ann Arbor City Council must pass this simple humanitarian resolution: “We demand that all sanctions against Iran be removed immediately, to save millions of Iranian lives.”
That 16-word resolution won’t cost you a thing, and it will save many lives.
See these recent articles:
” ‘Literally Weaponizing Coronavirus’: Despite One of World’s Worst Outbreaks of Deadly Virus, US Hits Iran With ‘Brutal’ New Sanctions”https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/03/18/literally-weaponizing-coronavirus-despite-one-worlds-worst-outbreaks-deadly-virus-us 

Coronavirus: Ilhan Omar calls for lifting of sanctions on Iran amid outbreak: With more than 11,000 reported cases, the Islamic Republic is one of the worst affected by Covid-19 outside of China
https://www.middleeasteye.net/news/coronavirus-ilhan-omar-calls-lifting-Trump-sanctions-iran  
 “U.S. Sanctions on Iran Are Increasing Coronavirus Deaths. They Need to Be Stopped Now. The measures—imposed by Trump with bipartisan complicity—curtail desperately needed medical supplies.”
https://inthesetimes.com/article/22387/iran-sanctions-coronavirus-deaths-democrats-trump-nuclear-deal-medicine

“The Coronavirus Is Killing Iranians. So Are Trump’s Brutal Sanctions.”
https://theintercept.com/2020/03/17/coronavirus-iran-sanctions/  

“”Amid the COVID-19 crisis, the Trump administration has slapped new sanctions on Iran”https://mondoweiss.net/2020/03/amidst-the-covid-19-crisis-the-trump-administration-has-slapped-new-sanctions-on-iran/ 
— That last article quotes Senator Bernie Sanders saying “Iran is facing a catastrophic toll from the coronavirus pandemic. U.S. sanctions should not be contributing to this humanitarian disaster. As a caring nation, we must lift any sanctions hurting Iran’s ability to address this crisis, including financial sanctions.”  

Iranian Children

As the only candidate on the ballot for a 4th Ward seat on the Ann Arbor City Council, I am telling the City Council to approve this resolution as quickly as possible:
We demand that all sanctions against Iran be removed immediately, to save millions of Iranian lives.”
In case you have forgotten that Iranians are human beings, take a look at the attached photos from Iran.   
Thank you,

Mozhgan Savabieasfahani, PhD, Candidate for Ann Arbor City Council, Ward 4.VoteForTheDoctor.com

March 18, 2020
https://www.commondreams.org/news/2015/03/11/scientist-who-exposed-health-impacts-burn-pits-iraq-awarded-rachel-carson-prize

Fund our kids’ social and educational support – Don’t fund police to beat them down.

June 3, 2020 Imagine what $30 million every year could do for Ann Arbor’s community development, for example Ann Arbor's Jobs Corp program -- run by the Neutral Zone -- to get every kid ready for college, get them into college, get their college paid for, and launch...

First 100 Days in Office Plan

Dr. Mozhgan’s Plan for Her First 100 Days on the Ann Arbor City Council   By Dr. Mozhgan Savabieasfahani   Campaign video: youtu.be/4kYdnvS6aQI Campaign web site: VoteForTheDoctor.com Campaign Twitter account: @Mozhgan4Council   Local media coverage:...

Ann Arbor needs to prepare field hospitals now!

March 22, 2020 To the Ann Arbor City Council, Mayor, and Human Rights Commission, with a copy to the news media: I am still the only candidate for Ann Arbor City Council, 4th Ward, who is on the ballot. I am also the closest thing to representation which Ward 4 now...

Statement by Dr. Mozhgan to the Ann Arbor City Council, the Mayor and the Human Rights Commission

Ann Arbor, Michigan: US sanctions are killing Iranians during a global pandemic. Listen to the outcry demanding an immediate stop to all sanctions on Iran to protect lives. See the articles on the subject which have been released in recent days; some are referenced...

The City Council needs to start setting up a field hospital for this pandemic

The City Council needs to start setting up a field hospital for this pandemic -  Ireland & Italy are doing just that. Otherwise, existing hospitals will be overwhelmed.   As the University of Michigan campus is evacuated, it can become the site of a field...

This pandemic is just the beginning. Here is my public health program as your City Council candidate.

This pandemic is just the beginning. Here is my public health program as your City Council candidate March 13, 2020 For Immediate Release CC: Ann Arbor City Council, to the Mayor, and to the Human Rights Commission Ann Arbor, Michigan: This is a good time to share my...

Dr. Mozhgan demands to clean up the expanding dioxane contamination immediately before it poisons Ann Arbor’s drinking water

Shovels in the ground now! Dr. Mozhgan demands that City Council clean up the expanding dioxane contamination immediately, before it poisons Ann Arbor's drinking water   Dr. Mozhgan told City Council to put its shovels in the ground now, and clean up the toxic...

Statement urging the City of Ann Arbor to immediately clean up the toxic Gelman Dioxane Plume

To: Mayor Taylor and Ann Arbor City Council Regarding: DC-1 19-1887 - "Resolution Supporting the Environmental Protection Agency’s Active Involvement with the Gelman Site and Encouraging its Listing of the same as a “Superfund” Site"   Your vote, wishing for a...

The City Council needs to start setting up a field hospital for this pandemic

The City Council needs to start setting up a field hospital for this pandemic

The City Council needs to start setting up a field hospital for this pandemic –  Ireland & Italy are doing just that. Otherwise, existing hospitals will be overwhelmed.
 
As the University of Michigan campus is evacuated, it can become the site of a field hospital, if the City is unable to find any other space. 

Look at Italy: “Work was underway on a new field hospital in Milan today, with a structure normally used for sports being converted to a makeshift intensive care wing” – See photo here: