Digital Justice Campaign drops in on mayoral campaigns

With the Cleveland municipal election only a week away, the Cleveland Digital Justice Campaign still hasn’t gotten responses from Mayoral candidates Frank Jackson and Zack Reed to our four questions, which were emailed to them more than a month ago.

So this morning Patricia Guinea, Rick Mosley, Tracy Bucher, Alisa Hood and CYC director Bill Callahan (pictured) went to the two candidates’ campaign headquarters to look for answers.

At Mayor Jackson’s headquarters, the Digital Justice delegation walked in on a Monday morning campaign staff meeting, but got five minutes to talk with Cleveland Public Works Director Michael Cox and Jackson campaign manager Michael Bowen.  Neither Cox nor Bowen seemed to be aware of the Digital Justice Campaign’s questions or the month-long email correspondence about them, including this 10/13 note:

Subject: RE: Cleveland Digital Justice Campaign.
From: Frank Jackson <contact@forabettercleveland.com>
Date: 10/13/2017 05:11 PM
To: “bill@connectyourcommunity.org” <bill@connectyourcommunity.org>

Bill,
Thank you for bringing this to my attention, through more than 25 email messages. I have noted your interest and commitment to this cause, and will investigate further.
Sincerely,
Frank G Jackson, For A Better Cleveland.

Campaign manager Bowen said he would take responsibility for getting the Campaign a response, but would not commit to a timeline.

Next stop was Councilman Reed’s campaign office on East 116th, where the Digital Justice group found staffer Dee Drain. Drain listened to their concerns, looked at their copies of unanswered emails to Reed, and made a call to a senior communications staff named Tee Robinson.  Through Drain, Robinson asked for another copy of the Digital Justice questions and promised to provide answers before the end of the day. (As of 9:30 pm Monday evening, that hasn’t happened.)

So the Digital Inclusion Campaign team went home without the answers they were seeking, but with a promise from a senior official in each campaign to deliver them.

Will they? And what will they tell us about Frank Jackson and Zack Reed’s commitment to digital literacy and access for all their constituents?

Stay tuned.

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