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Simpson chairs final Human Services, Youth & Arts Committee

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Council Member Yvette Simpson chairs her last Human Services, Youth & Arts Committee held at the Seven Hills Neighborhood House on Monday, Dec. 11. Joining Simpson for the committee meeting is her policy director, Nicholas Chaney (left) and Clifford Pendergrass, Department of Economic & Community Development (right). Both Council Members Chris Seelbach and Wendell Young did not attend due to illness. The Committee heard three presentations from organizations based in the West End regarding their programs to help the community move forward. (right). Photo by Andria Carter

By Andria Carter

Herald Contributor

Council Member Yvette Simpson chaired her final Human Services, Youth & Arts Committee meeting on Monday, December 11 at the Seven Hills Neighborhood House at 901 Findlay Street in the West End.

Committee members heard three presentations: Seven Hills Neighborhood House, which Simpson has continuously worked with on several initiatives; the Human Services Fund Annual Report; and an update on the Cincinnati Museum Center.

Simpson spoke briefly on her accomplishments with the committee over the last four years.

Two key initiatives Simpson worked on through the Human Services, Youth & Arts Committee are Youth and battling Human Trafficking in the City of Cincinnati.

Through her efforts the City of Cincinnati now has a guide regarding the State of Youth with the Youth Gap Analysis Study. The three-year study provides an intimate portrait of city youth and their environment.

She also established the Youth Commission of Cincinnati, took over the city’s youth summer employment program and made it more efficient and renamed it the Youth-to-Work program. She also established an annual Youth Summit, which is managed by the Cincinnati Youth Collaborative with Youth at the Center.

Simpson began by battling the city’s growing Human Trafficking problem. She established the Human Trafficking Working Group; a coalition of City departments tackling areas affected by Human Trafficking. The working group successfully reduced human trafficking in several neighborhoods including West McMicken, Lower Price, East Price Hill, West Price Hill, Walnut Hills, Evanston, Carthage, and just started seeing results in the Bond Hill/Roselawn area. And helped to create and maintain Change Court led by Hamilton County Municipal Judge Heather Russell.

Her accomplishments with the Human Services, Youth & Arts Committee also include the increase of the Human Services Funding to $3 million, the increase of funding for violence prevention work, supported statewide passage of the Intimae Partner Violence Bill, which is expected to pass by the end of the year, and sponsored legislation for the city’s new Paid Parental Leave policy.

Officials from the various institutions involved attended Simpson’s presentation.

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