Statement from Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan Regarding Shots Fired on Herschel Street

Statement from Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan Regarding Shots Fired on Herschel Street

I was deeply concerned to learn that a round of bullets just missed a young woman and her sleeping newborn baby in their home on Herschel Street in the early hours of Wednesday morning. I commend the Providence Police Department for their swift work to respond to the scene and investigate this heinous crime.

This life-threatening violence is unacceptable. People deserve to feel safe in their homes, and events like this undermine that sense of safety and security. As Chairwoman of the Council’s Committee on Finance, I secured funding for a new Police Academy to begin immediately after the current academy graduates to return our ranks to a number necessary to support community policing. And I will continue to work to ensure that the Providence Police Department is amply staffed and prepared to address the growing wave of shootings and other crimes throughout the city.

We can only be thankful that this young woman and her newborn baby were not injured on Wednesday morning. We must remain committed to stopping these instances before they happen, through community policing and nonviolence education and diversion programs, and by keeping guns out of the wrong hands.

Providence City Council and Mayor Jorge O. Elorza Launch COVID-19 Small Business Relief Program

City Council Brings Charges Against & Seeks Removal Of City Clerk Shawn Selleck For Creating Toxic Work Environment

This evening, the Providence City Council voted unanimously to approve a Providence Home Rule Charter Section 403 resolution to bring charges against City Clerk Shawn Selleck, and to seek his suspension or removal from office. The resolution charges Mr. Selleck with the following:

· Violations of the City Code of Conduct

· Violations of the City Anti-bullying Policy

· Violations of the City Anti-harassment Policy

· Violations of the City Workplace Violence Policy

· Creation of a Toxic Work Environment

· Inappropriate Management

The charges contained in the resolution are based on an independent investigation conducted by respected employment and labor attorney Carly Iafrate, which determined Mr. Selleck violated the City’s Code of Conduct, Anti-Bullying, Anti-Harassment, and Workforce Violence policies through a pattern of bullying, confrontational, and intimidating behavior that created a toxic work environment within the City Clerk’s office.

Pursuant to Section 403, these charges will be presented in writing to the Mayor and Mr. Selleck, and after a 30-day period, the Council will call a public hearing to weigh the charges and vote on the suspension or removal of the City Clerk (two-thirds vote of the Council required).

Providence City Council and Mayor Jorge O. Elorza Launch COVID-19 Small Business Relief Program

Providence City Council Approves New Administrator of Community Relations and Diversion Services Role to Build Police-Community Empathy

Tonight, the Providence City Council voted to approve a new position in the police department to help strengthen community relations and public safety in Providence neighborhoods. The budget ordinance which creates the new position also maintains the funding for the position of an additional Police Major which the Council approved in the original FY 2022 budget ordinances adopted in July.

“We are excited to create this new position. The duties and responsibilities will be to coordinate the efforts of the community relations unit and infuse a culture of equity in the department as it shifts back to community policing and diversion services,” stated Council President John J. Igliozzi. “We heard loud and clear from residents and community organizations that the City needs a return to the approach to policing that includes community building and empathy.”

Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan (Ward 5), Chair of the Finance Committee stated, “The Chief of Police provided the Finance Committee with a job description for the new role and a clearly defined scope and charge, which is in line with a civilian (non-sworn police officer) position in the department. We strongly urge the Mayor to publicly post this high profile position, in order to attract the best candidates in an open and fair process.”

The Administrator of Community Relations and Diversion Services salary is $99,517- $125,905 plus health care and benefits.

“We chose to set the Administrator of Community Relations and Diversion Services salary at a substantial level because this is an important job that requires someone with broad and varied experience, with a track record of effective community building and understanding of diversion services,” stated Ryan.

Second passage of the ordinance is scheduled for October 21st.

Statement from Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan Regarding Shots Fired on Herschel Street

Providence City Council Recognizes 50 Years of Women at Providence College

At tonight’s City Council meeting, Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan (Ward 5) introduced a resolution recognizing the 50-year anniversary of Providence College admitting women to their student body and faculty.

“It is hard to believe that just 50 years ago, women remained limited in their choices for their education, careers and lifestyles. Yet, as the world has modernized, the contributions women have made to their schools, workplaces, families and communities have been innumerable. Both my daughter and I received our Bachelor’s Degrees in Business Administration and MBA Degrees from Providence College, and my family has been so grateful for the opportunities afforded to us thanks to the institution,” stated Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan (Ward 5).

In 1971, Providence College broke the decades long precedent of male exclusivity to modernize their campus and make room for the dynamic and diverse contributions that women would bring to their staff and student body. Since Providence College was founded in 1917, many graduates have gone on to serve their communities as Providence City Councilors. Councilwoman Ryan is the first female graduate of Providence College to serve on the City Council.

“Providence College is among the top employers in the city of Providence. As we look to our past, we can appreciate the progress we have made through the decades. And as we move into the future, I look forward to continuing to work with our valued local institutions to ensure inclusivity and equal opportunities for all,” added Councilwoman Ryan.

Councilwoman Ryan (Ward 5) was elected in 2014. She currently serves as Chair of the City Council Finance Committee, City Board of Investment Commissioner and Member of the City Retirement Board and Water Supply Board. During her tenure she has served in a number of leadership roles including Council Majority Leader, Majority Whip and Chair of the Council Ordinance Committee.

Statement from Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan Regarding Shots Fired on Herschel Street

Councilwoman Ryan Statement on Gun Violence in the City

PROVIDENCE, RI – City Councilwoman Jo-Ann Ryan (Ward 5) issued the following statement regarding ongoing gun violence in the city:

“Yet again we are experiencing another outbreak of gun violence in our city this weekend. This intensifying violent crime is devastating for the victims and their families, city residents and visitors, and also threatens the economic well-being of our city.

“Last night in my neighborhood, a fight started within AJ’s bar on Academy Avenue, and spilled out onto the street, where a gun was fired multiple times. Thankfully, no one was shot, but an individual was taken to the hospital with injuries from the altercation. The Providence licensing board held an emergency meeting today and has ordered AJ’s closed until a hearing is held on Monday to determine next steps. Unfortunately, multiple shootings across Providence have occurred in the last two days, killing one person and leaving several others hospitalized.

“These incidents once again highlight the urgency for Providence to fully restore community policing. Unfortunately, under the current Mayor’s administration, our police ranks have dropped to a historic low, and as a result, community policing has not been feasible, our residents have been placed at risk, and police officer morale has suffered. Thankfully, the current police academy will complete in November; as Chairwoman of the Finance Committee, I will work in earnest to find funds to start a new academy immediately after this class graduates. I also will continue to collaborate with my Council colleagues, Providence residents and business owners, and the police department to ensure that the City adds the necessary resources we need to restore safety to our streets and neighborhoods, including additional officers and diversion and intervention services.”

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