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Media Contact: Marissa McDaid 330-749-3630 | @MLMcDaid ! Embargoed until Nov. 26, 2013 at 5 p.m. “Get Your Well On” Campaign Supports Preventative Healthcare Measures COLUMBUS – November 23, 2013. The Ohio Associations of Health Plans recently implemented “Get Your Well On,” a campaign that encourages preventative health measures and regular doctor appointments. Part of the “Health Care Home” initiative, the campaign aims to lower health care costs, particularly in the Medicare sector, by encouraging a healthier population. “Early screening and detection are critical in receiving better, more affordable care,” said Kelly McGivern, President and CEO of the Ohio Association of Health Plans. “We hope the Health Care Home’s ‘Get Your Well On’ campaign will guide families who are searching for those resources.” “Get Your Well On” circulates six consumer cards, each card addressing a core component of a healthy lifestyle in a simple, yet eye-catching way. A children’s coloring book, “My Doctor Cares for Me,” lets kids know the importance of regular doctors visits. The six consumer cards and children’s coloring book can be found at the “Health Care Home” website at This newly designed website also includes resources for families to find their own local Medicare health plans and includes links to various community organizations such as the Department of Job and Family Services. Learn more about the Ohio Association of Health Plans at or by calling 614-228-4662. The Ohio Association of Health Plans (OAHP) represents 20 member health plans providing insurance to more than 7.5 million Ohioians and oversees seven Medicaid Care Coordination Plans that provide insurance for people on Medicaid. OAHP actively promotes and advocates for quality health care benefits for all consumers in Ohio. ###

News Release
717 E. 17th Avenue Columbus, Ohio 43211


Contact: Alicia Shoults 614-644-4011

Opening Ceremony kicks off 2013 Ohio State Fair COLUMBUS – In celebration of the 160 year of the Ohio State Fair, Gov. John Kasich and family will join Ohio Expo Center & State Fair General Manager Virgil Strickler to kick off the 2013 Ohio State Fair on Wednesday, July 24. Performances by the All-Ohio State Fair Band & Youth Choir, as well as shows by several of the Fair’s strolling entertainers, will lead up to the ribbon cutting ceremony. Fair mascot Butters D. Cow will also make an appearance. Junior Fair Board President Kelsey Rumburg will deliver the opening remarks. A media tour for the First Family, Gov. Kasich, Karen Waldbillig Kasich and daughters Reese and Emma, will follow the Opening Ceremony. This tour will lead the Kasichs to key destinations throughout the Fair. The Opening Ceremony will begin at 9 am at the Cardinal Gate on the north end of the Ohio Expo Center grounds. New this year at the Fair includes the Sea Lion Splash presented by The CW, the only traveling sea lion show in the United States. Fairgoers can experience the thrill of seven brand new rides. New foods include giant deep-fried gummy bears, hot buffalo eggs on a stick, banana puddin’ funnel cakes, maple bacon ice cream and a make -yourown pixie stick stand. For more information, call 1-888-OHO-EXPO or 1-614-644-FAIR. On the Web, visit us at The Ohio Expo Center is proud to host the Ohio State Fair. With a spectacular midway, big-name entertainment, hundreds of exhibits and one of the largest junior fair shows in the nation, the 2013 Ohio State Fair will run July 24 August 4.
-30The Ohio Expo Center is an equal opportunity employer and service provider.


McDaid 1 Marissa McDaid Jour 3700 Op Ed Financial illiteracy too common in millenials According to the Institute for College Access & Success' Project on Student Debt, as of December of 2013, the average American college student graduates with $29,400 in student loan debt. Not only must students pay off loans, but negotiate salaries, balance bank accounts, budget living expenses and more. However, in recent times students rarely, if ever, gain basic financial skills during their education. As a college senior, I chose to enroll in a personal finance course which taught me about retirement plans, mortgages, budgeting and - oh, and how to pay for college. The opportunity to take a finance class never arose until my final year of school. Learning how to make smart decisions regarding student loans or how to save money for college in high school could have saved me hundreds of dollars. Because public education aims to teach Americans how to function in society, finance classes should be a regular part of our education system. Our public education system shouldn’t be treating finance, an essential life skill, as a special elective. Making financial education primarily available to college students perpetuates financial woes. Financial education shouldn’t be exclusive to the educated and privileged. Students should learn money management skills from an early age. Few public secondary schools make finance classes mandatory, as noted in a USA Today article from 2012. This same article reports that financial literacy fares worse for minority groups and those with only high school degrees. Additionally, studies by the U.S. Treasury Department and Department of Education in 2012 show decreasing financial literacy scores among high school students within the last few years. In the federal Jump$tart program, a financial education program adopted by 44 states in 2008, high school students averaged a 48 percent on financial literacy exams. Although past federal efforts such as the Jump$tart program have proved unsuccessful, state governments should step in to help address these failing scores. State lawmakers must act in one of two ways: 1) Lessen curriculum regulations so teachers can create financial lesson plans, although this would mean not “teaching to the test,” or 2) add finance to state achievement tests to guarantee the subject’s implementation in schools. Making our population more financially literate benefits everyone. When people make wise investment choices and learn to lend and borrow money intelligently, we gain a healthier economy. Taking time to talk to your state legislators about financial education in public schools is something we all can afford to do.!


Magazine Feature – “A New Breed of Criminal” She doesn’t look like a criminal. She has a record so clean there isn’t even a speeding ticket to her name. Formerly a cake decorator, a bartender, and a hair stylist, she now owns her own dog grooming business. Her house appears small and humble and she seems content with what she’s worked for. Beside her kitchen door hangs a lime green sign that says “A crazy dog lady lives here!” You could describe Kim Bullock in many ways, but “criminal” seems unlikely. The codified ordinances of Wooster, Ohio, however, state otherwise. In regions across the United States, state and local governments have adopted policies referred to as breed specific legislation, an umbrella term for any law that prohibits the ownership or sheltering of particular dog breeds within a certain jurisdiction. Forty one states currently have some form of breed specific legislation according to, a campaign started by Seattle web designer Colleen Lynn. In 2007, a pit bull walking with its owner on the sidewalk attacked Lynn as she jogged past. The dog grabbed Lynn’s arm and shook it in his mouth after knocking her to the ground. A metal bar was used to bind Lynn’s forearm back together after suffering multiple fractures and receiving five stitches. Lynn lost two months of work at her freelance web design job as a result of her injury. She sees her campaign as a way to inform both owners and residents about the dangers of vicious dogs by promoting legislation that keeps those breeds away from people. “[Creating legislation] isn’t that expensive. These laws will help owners understand that their dog is dangerous, something that a lot of people fail to realize” Lynn explains.


The owners of the pit bull that attacked Lynn surrendered their pet to the Seattle Humane Society where it was euthanized after a 10-day quarantine period. For a number of years, pit bulls were banned completely in the state of Ohio, until May 2012 when the state legislature repealed the law classifying them as “vicious.” The new law redefines the terms used to describe violent dogs without discriminating against specific breeds. The term “nuisance” refers to dogs that have chased or attempted to bite people outside of its owner’s property. “Dangerous” classifies any dog with multiple nuisance violations or dogs that have injured people or killed another dog without provocation while outside of its owner’s property. The term “vicious” only applies to dogs that have either killed a person or caused them severe injury. Despite the change in state law, local governments in Ohio still must make decisions regarding whether to adopt similar more liberal policies or enact their own unique policies, which may include breed specific legislation. Wooster, Ohio’s city ordinance defines “vicious” animals to include “a breed that is commonly known as a Pit Bull dog” before stating that “No person shall possess, harbor or keep a vicious animal within the City.” “I truly feel that breed specific legislation exists out of out of ignorance. Just the simple fact that most people think that ‘Pit Bull’ is a breed... It’s not,” Bullock says. Bullock explains that breeds that fall under the Pit Bull classification include American staffordshire terriers, Staffordshire bull terriers, American pit bull terriers, boxers, American bulldogs, mastiffs and, in some areas, dalmatians. Pit bulls often garner their vicious reputation from their use in dog fights. A media firestorm occurred in 2007 when a confidential source informed ESPN that NFL


superstar Mike Vick made his name as one of Virginia’s biggest dog fighters, placing bets of $30,000 and higher on fights. After the media frenzy, Deadspin reporter Barry Petchesky investigated the prominence of dog fighting in Philadelphia, only to learn that reports increased from 245 cases in 2008 to 903 in 2009 after Vick’s August signing with the Eagles. Could Vick’s media attention have caused such a sharp climb in popularity? Vick’s story influenced the ASPCA to devote more officers to investigating and reporting instances of dog fighting, resulting in an increase of 25 percent more reports than the previous year. Despite the increase in awareness and legal action, Philadelphia SPCA law enforcement director George Bengal told Deadspin that he believed dog fighting had become “a fad.” But why do people use dogs classified as “pit bulls” in particular in fighting rings? The ASPCA notes that certain traits characterize each dog breed, and while pit bull varieties are not vicious, they do need close supervision because of the fact they have been bred to fight other dogs. Dogs that come from a mix of pit bull breeds might show aggressive behavior instinctively in response to feeling fearful or defensive, just because historically humans have shaped them this way. Dr. Meagan Herron, an assistant veterinary professor at Ohio State University, devotes much of her research to looking at what causes aggression in canines. As a behavioral clinician, she looks at how human interaction affects the behavior of dogs and why they choose to respond to humans in certain ways. A study conducted by Herron in 2008 showed that the majority of owners who claim to “self train” their animals, rather than employ a professional to work with their dog, use techniques that cause pets to fear


their owner. In her study, 43 percent of owners admitted to hitting or kicking their dogs for undesirable behavior. Thirty-nine percent of the participants in Herron’s study admitted they had physically forced a dog’s mouth open, 29 percent said they have grabbed their dog’s jowls and shook their face and 31 percent admitted to having performed an “alpha roll” before, where the owner grabs the dog’s front end and rolls it over onto its back to show dominance. “Dominance-based techniques have been popularized by the media through TV shows and training books,” Herron explains. Her study concluded that these techniques significantly increase the likelihood of aggression in dogs, especially toward their owner. If dog aggression relies heavily on how an animal is socialized, does breed specific legislation effectively reduce instances of dog violence? As of 2008, the Center for Disease Control reported that 4.7 million dog bites occur annually. Approximately 800,000 of these instances require some sort of formal medical treatment. Though the CDC has not reported any dog bite data since then, they note that 70 percent of bites come from unneutered male dogs. “How about if they pass laws stating, ‘you must spay, neuter or have a breeder’s license for your companion animal?’” Angela Bonaiuto, a volunteer for Cleveland Animal Control, suggests. Bonaiuto believes that dog violence occurs as a result of human neglect and that breed specific legislation does not address the situation effectively. She states that spay and neuter laws not only would make kennels and animal shelters less crowded, but potentially lower dog aggression, too.


“Breed specific legislation is no different than discriminating against a race, religion (or) eye color,” Bonaiuto says. “Maybe with laws enforcing responsible ownership there would be no such thing as an urgent dog.” “Urgent” animals are pets that shelters plan to euthanize within a set number of days. Some volunteers call this part of the shelter “death row.” If the urgent dog is related to the any of the breeds on an area’s list of vicious dogs, the shelter will need to ensure that the dog’s adoptive owner does not live within city limits before legally signing it over. Previously, Wooster’s city ordinance prevented Bullock from adopting a shelter dog. “We found a wonderful, very loveable 9-month-old American Staffordshire terrier at the shelter who had perfect SAFER (temperament) scores,” she explains. Because the dog is considered a type of pit bull breed and she resides in the city, the shelter could not legally allow her to take him. “I walked out very frustrated knowing that a perfectly good puppy may lose its life, even when he had people interested in giving him a loving home, just because of ignorance on the part of the lawmakers,” she says. Few jurisdictions that implement breed specific legislation measure the outcomes of these policies as far as their effects on crime. The ASPCA claims that no evidence exists supporting the idea that breed specific legislation decreases the number of dog bites. Prince County, Maryland, spends $250,000 annually to enforce its ban on pit bulls. Research conducted by the county’s animal control department in 2003 revealed that the policy created no improvement in public safety. Animal control officers stated that all


transgressions committed by owners were already covered under a pre-existing non-breed specific animal control code, such as leash laws or nuisance laws, making the pit bull ban unnecessary and costly. Who society chooses to call criminal remains up for discussion. Though most breed specific legislation labels the owners as criminals, the outrage surrounding Mike Vick’s case shows us that the majority of the public sees dog fighters as the true criminals. Despite the restrictions on owning pit bulls within city limits, Bullock currently owns two, Zany and Watson. “When we adopted Zany as a puppy she was listed as a lab mix. It wasn't until her first trip to the vet that we found out she was a pit mix, so our first pit bull adoption was by chance,” Bullock states. “After much research on these breeds and learning how wonderful their personalities were, how misunderstood they were, how loving and affectionate they were and how they were such ‘people pleasers,’ we knew we wanted to do what we could for this misunderstood breed.” Bullock found Watson on the Cleveland Animal Control Facebook page, watching as the date of his euthanasia was continually pushed back, until the shelter finally could not wait any longer. She says, when she called the shelter, Watson was “literally hours from being put down.” “Phone call after frantic phone call, we finally got approval to foster. He would just stay with us long enough to find him a forever home.” Soon after Watson entered the Bullock’s home, she knew he couldn’t leave. Described as the “class clown” of the group, Watson serves as the clumsy younger


brother to his part-pit sister Zany and his brother Scruffy, a Brussels griffon and Maltese mix. According to Bullock, Watson’s behavior leads the family to wonder about his abusive past. Often times, someone shouting or reaching for an object quickly causes Watson to cower. Thankfully, despite Watson’s potential history of abuse, he has never displayed any signs of aggression. “He reminds us every day that he is thankful to be in a warm loving home,” Bullock notes of Watson’s sweet demeanor. Wooster’s pit bull ban means that Bullock cannot license either Zany or Watson. The main danger comes from either of her dogs harming another person. Currently she holds insurance policies on her dogs through State Farm Insurance, specifically because their company does not discriminate against any breeds. Bullock explains that many other insurance companies charge exceptionally higher rates for clients owning pit bull breeds or living in areas where breed specific legislation exists. Bullock recommends watching the documentary “Beyond the Myth: A Film about Breed Discrimination.” She would like to show the film in Wooster to better inform the community about the negative effects of the City’s current set of animal control laws. She hopes that the city will reform its policies to approximate the new Ohio standards. “Any dog can be pushed to the breaking point...just like humans. If you poke and prod and nag and irritate and pull and not let up, I'm probably gonna snap too!” she jokes.