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TLAS Statement on George Floyd
A police officer kneeled on George Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds before his death. Almost 3 minutes of this period occurred while Mr. Floyd was unresponsive.
The attorneys, staff, and the Board of Directors of the Toledo Legal Aid Society mourn Mr. Floyd’s death at the hands of the Minneapolis police and our hearts go out to Mr. Floyd’s family, friends, and others who are hurting right now. Further, we denounce the conduct of the police officers who killed Mr. Floyd.
We emphatically offer our support and encouragement to those who peacefully protest his death and stand against racial inequality. We further affirm our commitment to advocating for continued criminal justice reform; rooting out overt, implicit, or structural racism; and achieving racial justice in our community and nationwide.
There have been many positive gains by criminal defense organizations and their clients in the criminal justice system over the past several years. Those improvements are significant and welcomed—but it took just 8 minutes and 46 seconds to be painfully reminded, again, that there is much work to be done to achieve racial equity and to fulfill the promises of the Bill of Rights and the other protections afforded to all of us under the Constitution of the United States. For the foregoing reasons:
The Toledo Legal Aid Society pledges to continue to participate and lead in discussions about criminal justice reform with an emphasis on addressing racial and ethnic disparities in the criminal justice system;
The Toledo Legal Aid Society supports law enforcement practices and policies that discourage the use of militaristic weapons and tactics;
The Toledo Legal Aid Society supports law enforcement policies and training that protect human dignity and distinguish between appropriate use and inappropriate use of force, including banning the use of neck restraints;
The Toledo Legal Aid Society supports and encourages continued implicit bias (and other) training, community outreach, and community-oriented policing practices by law enforcement in Lucas County;
The Toledo Legal Aid Society supports the declaration by the Board of Lucas County Commissioners that racism, whether overt, implicit, or structural, is a public health crisis;
The Toledo Legal Aid Society vows to continue to advocate for strategies, policies, and programs that address and remedy the underlying factors contributing to the likelihood that an individual may enter or reenter the criminal justice system;
The Toledo Legal Aid Society will continue to seek meaningful alternatives to the criminal prosecution of individuals struggling with poverty, substance use, mental health, and other challenges;
The Toledo Legal Aid Society affirms its commitment to encouraging and empowering the voices of those who have historically been over-represented in the criminal justice system;
The Toledo Legal Aid Society affirms its commitment to improving its own communication and community outreach throughout Lucas County; and
The Toledo Legal Aid Society vows to never forget the painful lessons learned as the world witnessed, in horror, the senseless death of George Floyd and rededicates its efforts to honor his death and those of countless others throughout our nation’s history as a catalyst for positive change.
Laura and John Arnold Foundation
Defender Spotlight: Taking a Second Look
Defender Spotlight: Defenders at the Table
MacArthur Safety + Justice Challenge
In April of 2016, Lucas County was awarded a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation $1.75 million grant to reform Lucas County’s criminal justice system. The Safety + Justice challenge allows Lucas County to implement meaningful reform in our criminal justice system as we address fundamental questions about community safety, the use of jails, and justice for all.
Learn more about Lucas County’s efforts to ensure that our criminal justice system works for all residents at the
The mission of the Toledo Legal Aid Society is to provide excellent legal representation, in a competent, assertive, and personal manner, to all indigent clients who are charged with the commission of an offense or act that is in violation of a statute of the State of Ohio, or an ordinance of a municipality within Lucas County, and for which the penalty or any possible adjudication includes the potential loss of liberty.
Assistant Public Defender and TLAS Fellowship Program positions available in Lucas County, Ohio. Successful candidates must be licensed with the Ohio Supreme Court. Graduates from an accredited college of law who are awaiting Ohio bar results will be considered for the fellowship program. Please see http://www.nlada.org/node/34681 for more detailed descriptions. Email cover letter and resume by November 6, 2020 to: ToledoLegalAidSociety@Yahoo.com