Chamber to conduct crime study; 5 Ohio cities among deadliest in US

Sep. 14—The Ohio Chamber of Commerce is surveying its membership to identify crime issues affecting businesses to determine ways to improve public safety across the state.

"The safety of our communities remains fundamental to our state's ability to attract and retain businesses and that makes it a priority for the Ohio Chamber," said Ohio Chamber CEO Steve Stivers in a release issued Tuesday.

The public safety survey is a direct result of a CBS News report earlier this year that identified five Ohio cities among the nation's deadliest. Dayton was ranked 5 and Cincinnati 19 on the list that also included Cleveland (10); Akron (49); and Toledo (57).

Dayton experienced a 30% increase in the number of homicides from 2018 to 2019, the year of the Aug. 4 Oregon District mass shooting when a Bellbrook man shot and killed nine people and wounded 27 others before he was gunned down by police.

A table below shows the five ranked Ohio cities and the number of homicides for 2018 and 2019:

Rank City 2019 2018

5 Dayton 48 37

10 Cleveland 92 129

19 Cincinnati 64 57

49 Akron 27 38

57 Toledo 34 37

Murder rates were compared in 65 major U.S. cities — those with more than 100,000 residents — using the FBI's 2019 Crime in the United States data, which is the latest available, along with data culled from city police and the U.S. Census Bureau, the February report stated.

"The state of Ohio has made it clear that the issue of public safety is a priority, making over $100 million in grants available to local law enforcement; however, there is still more to be done.

"This survey will help to identify day-to-day issues Ohio's businesses face when it comes to public safety and continue the conversation on how best to improve safety across the state," Stivers said.

The Ohio Chamber represents thousands of companies that do business in Ohio.