Ka'Sandra Wade

Many women will celebrate Valentine’s Day by spending some quality time with their significant others, but there are many other women who will spend the day in fear of intimate partner violence.

That’s why New Voices Pittsburgh, a community based organization dedicated to the health and well-being of black women and girls, is organizing a rally to end gender-based violence, to be held at noon Friday at Market Square.

Pittsburgh City Council has given unanimous passage to a set of bills that will revamp the way city police officers are trained to respond to domestic violence incidents.

All nine City Council members agreed to adopt the Maryland Domestic Violence Lethality Assessment Program, a step-by-step questionnaire process used by responding officers to determine the victim's risk of physical abuse. The officer would then be required to call the hotline for the Women's Center and Shelter of Greater Pittsburgh and ask the victim to speak with the operator.

Via Tsuji / Flickr

This Wednesday, Pittsburgh City Council votes on legislation written in reaction to the tragic death of Ka’Sandra Wade. Police responded to Ka'Sandra's 911 call on the night of December 31st, 2012. But they left her home when her boyfriend came to the window and told them that everything was alright. That night Ka'Sandra's boyfriend killed her and later killed himself. The legislation up for a vote this week would impact the way police respond to domestic violence calls.

City Council News with Noah Brode

May 6, 2013
90.5 WESA / 90.5 WESA

Last week, Pittsburgh City Council passed a vote for a $1.15 million gunshot detection system for the neighborhood of Homewood, despite some opposition. WESA City Council Reporter Noah Brode gives us the details on the opposing votes.  Also, we'll discuss legislation to overhaul the police bureau's policies when responding to domestic violence. The bill from Councilman Ricky Burgess has been in the works for months. After a  controversial amendment was introduced last week by Burgess, Councilman Bill Peduto walked out, angry at the proposed elimination of the city's "no tolerance" policy for police officers who are found guilty of domestic violence.  City Controller Michael Lamb also released Pittsburgh's Comprehensive Annual Financial Report on Thursday. The document shows how Pittsburgh is improving financially.