COLUMBUS—Today the ACLU of Ohio released a new six-part video series - “Know Your Rights: Rights vs, Reality.” The video series supports the organization’s work to advance racial justice by engaging viewers in conversation surrounding the realities that Ohioans, particularly People of Color, can often experience when exercising their constitutionally protected rights with law enforcement. Topics of the six-part series include, “The Talk,” Traffic Stops, Arrested, Protesting, Law Enforcement at Your Home, and Get Involved.

The videos are a collection of open-ended conversations, moderated by Columbus news anchor Tracy Townsend, featuring current and former representatives from the ACLU of Ohio: 

  • Dr. Ebony Speakes-Hall: Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Associate Professor of Social Work at Ohio Dominican University - current ACLU of Ohio Board President 
  • Hasan Kwame Jeffries: Professor of African American History at The Ohio State University - former ACLU of Ohio Board President, current Board Member 
  • Curtis Maples: Electrical Engineer - current ACLU of Ohio Board Member and Equity Officer  
  • Lori Urogdy Eiler: Retired educator from East Cleveland City Schools – former ACLU Board Member 
  • Mary Paxton: Senior Director of Advancement at JumpStart Incorporated, former ACLU of Ohio Development Director  

“The dynamic discussions and honest reflections are meant to inform and empower Ohioans about police interactions and what “The Talk” means to Black and Brown families in America,” added Ebony Speakes-Hall, ACLU of Ohio Board President. “We sincerely hope these videos will help shape the conversation about how the racial component of police interactions can influence how experiences play out in reality, despite our ‘rights’ as citizens.” 

“At this particular point in our nation’s, and Ohio’s history, where concerted efforts are being made to erase, ignore, and gloss over many of the historical and deeply held anti-Black attitudes and preconceptions by law enforcement, that have led to the unnecessary deaths of numerous Black and Brown individuals, I am confident this video series will educate and inform young students, and likely mature adults, in ways that will indeed keep them from safe from harm at the hands of law enforcement and may very well save their lives,” added Raphael Davis-Williams, Director of Equity and Inclusion at the ACLU of Ohio

The “Know Your Rights” brand has been a longstanding cornerstone of the ACLU of Ohio’s public education work, particularly with students across the state via the organization’s Speaker’s Bureau program. The information provided in this video series is not legal advice. 

View the six-part video series