September 18, 2023

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Public Commenters (8 min)
Thad Franklin  DeSeanna Morgan  Sabrina Otis 

Thad Franklin

Thanks for your time. I'll be brief. I know the Browns play the Steelers tonight. I'm trying to get out of here myself. Good evening, Council members, and thank you for the opportunity to speak tonight in support of ending the sale of flavored tobacco products in our city. This is an important issue for our kids and our community.

My name's Thad Franklin. I'm a resident of Ward Six and the owner of Major League Barbershop on Lee Road. In the barber industry, I'm known as "Milano, Barber to the Stars". I'm a celebrity barber. I've done a lot of Browns players, Cavaliers, players and things like that. I've been married for 18 years, and I'm a father of four, but I'll get to all that later. After my grandmother passed from cancer, I started a campaign called 'I'll Do It For You', where I build awareness around early prostate screening both in my shop and on social media.

I've also started a campaign called 'Vape' that stands for 'Victimizing All People Everywhere', and through Vape, I reach young people and teach them about the harmful vaping products. You know, the ones you see on the counter. You might see Mike Tyson on them, or you might see some of the celebrities and rappers and entertainers that you see today, and it helps gravitate the kids to buy these products. And it's disgusting to me. In my community and throughout the inner city, these products sit right on the counter by the candy and the gum. They are clearly marketed for our kids, like menthol and other flavor products, and definitely for the African community in my city, in my area.

Council member Griffin and council members, you have an opportunity to do something about this. Legislation was introduced in February to take these products off the shelf in Cleveland. And it's already been done in Columbus. I mentioned that I was a father of four earlier. So the kids I'm talking about include my own, but I'm also talking about my customers, my neighbors and all Clevelanders. Their health and future is way more important than tobacco industry, profits and revenue for these retailers.

To me, this is really simple. We know the problem and we know there's a solution, we know who's affected. And now it's just time for us to take action. In October, barbershops and churches across the city will be doing our parts. We'll be hosting No-Menthol Sunday events where we'll educate our communities about the issues and call on council to pass the policies. We'll be reaching out to council members to invite you to attend. I urge City Council to put the health of Cleveland kids and our families over tobacco industry retailers' profits, and let's end the sale of these dangerous products. Thank you for my time.

2:50 Permalink

DeSeanna Morgan

Hi, everyone. After doing some delegations in the public schools, I have found that the educational system for public schools is depleting.

We are not only Logistics Code, a Christian-based company where technology is embedded, but we've also branched off into other states where freight shippers and manufacturers of some large companies have been able to partner with us. But besides that, the educational spectrum, we are now announcing a high school called [unclear] High School of Technology. It'll be a Christian school. It'll have building foundations for those with special abilities and some of the electives will be Hebrew. Children can learn, students can learn Aramaic Hebrew, they have the opportunity to travel and to get an actual career fields that will help them, because although it's nice to see these things happening, student rights are becoming depleted. And I've witnessed where students that have been in a certain community have transitioned per se and they are isolated. They're isolated, they're mocked by their peers, and their students can tell when these students have transitioned into a different type of gender. So I have found it very- I have to speak on that to say that we have to stop certain rights for students so they can grow and adapt, you know, religion, politics. Students have complained about why [it's] tax is not being taught in the school. There are certain things not taught in schools because when you get into the real world, you have to learn it on your own, primarily from your parents and guardians. Many parents and guardians aren't as educated in those fields as well. So that's why [unclear] High School. We're going to be the best high school in the world and that's it.

2:27 Permalink

Sabrina Otis

I kind of got my answer already. But good evening, everybody. I just simply want to say to everybody, it's ok that tickets are given to people because we speed. I'm a speeder. So I know. But I have a problem when suburban cities are coming into the city of Cleveland, and they're coming 10 streets in.

See, if you're given a ticket, it should be the first couple of streets if you have to cross into our city. But when they're getting 10 streets in, when they're in the heart of Cleveland, when they're too far into the city where it's causing accidents and people are being harmed, It's a problem.

And I understand that, you know, we want to stop people from stealing cars because we need our cars. We got to go to work. I understand the necessity like if someone's being murdered, yes, I want you to catch them. So, run me over to get to them, but let me live though in the process.

But speeding to cause wrecks that are killing multiple people in our city, and it's affecting Cleveland. It's not affecting those cities that are running into our cities. And my biggest pet peeve is, you know it's a chase, you know they're coming towards Cleveland, why can't y'all block off y'all streets? I mean, protect us the way you protect your citizens. That is what I want to say to you all. Have a good day.

1:41 Permalink