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Courts and Crime

Area pastors and congregation members protest justice system


Kevin Niedermier
Religious leaders from across Northeast Ohio led a peaceful march through downtown Cleveland to protest what they say is unequal treatment by the
Courtesy of Kevin Niedermier
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Several hundred members of the Greater Cleveland Congregations marched through downtown Cleveland today calling for equal treatment by the local justice system. WKSU's Kevin Niedermier reports.
LISTEN: Pastor calls for justice reform

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Pastor Jawanza Colvin

The multi-denominational group represents about 40 northeast Ohio churches, synagogues and mosques. And its peaceful protest was to bring attention to what its members say are high arrest and incarceration rates for blacks, among other issues. Outside the Cuyahoga County Justice Center, Pastor Jawanza Colvin punctuated the group’s concerns.

“It is called a justice center, it’s called that to give those who enter the assurance they will be afforded every right and privilege by the constitution of the United States. But for too many and for too long they have felt, and the data bears this out, that this is not the case.”

Several hundred protesters attended today's rally

The group has not taken a position on Saturday’s acquittal of Cleveland police officer Michael Brelo on voluntary manslaughter charges, but it calls the verdict a symptom of deeper issues in the community. The Greater Cleveland Congregations contributed suggestions to the Department of Justice for its just-reached agreement with the City of Cleveland on police use of force issues.

(Click image for larger view.)

Pastor Jawanza Colvin of of the Olivet Instructional Baptist Church call for reforms outside the Cuyahoga County Justice Center.
Several hundred people marched in the Greater Cleveland Congregations protest.
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