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March 4, 2013

Host: Ted Simons

Anti-discrimination Ordinance

  |   Video
  • The Phoenix City Council approved an ordinance banning discrimination against those from the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender communities. Now that the ordinance is in place, city council member Tom Simplot will explain how it will be implemented.
  • Tom Simplot - Member, Phoenix City Council
Category: Government   |   Keywords: discrimination, phoenix, city, ,

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Ted Simons: Good evening and welcome to "Arizona Horizon." I'm Ted Simons. The Phoenix city council last week approved an ordinance that been bans discrimination against those who are gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender. Here now with more on the ordinance is Phoenix city council member Tom Simplot. Good to have here and thanks for joining us. Why was this -- why is this ordinance necessary?

Tom Simplot: Quite frankly, we're simply following the lead of more than cities across the country. And we're not leading the pack. We're catching up to corporate America, to cities, counties, states across the country, and it's important to protect those who are being discriminate against. And that's exactly what, what, that's exactly what we did.

Ted Simons: Are we seeing a lot of incidents of these folks being discriminate against?

Tom Simplot: Well, the bottom line, yes, those who are opposed to the ordinance, would say show me the evidence. But, that's not the issue. If one person being discriminate against, that's too many. So it's not a math, it's not a math issue. It's a matter of doing what's right. And that's exactly what we did.

Ted Simons: And this is focus on gay lesbian tri-sexual transgender.

Tom Simplot: That's correct.

Ted Simons: And includes housing, employment, and public accommodations?

Tom Simplot: Correct.

Ted Simons: And public accommodations means what?

Tom Simplot: Public accommodations meaning city hall, public facilities, that sort of thing. Restrooms, and yes, public restrooms, and for example, any of us going, any of us traveling anywhere across America, see the, the fully assessable unisex bathrooms. Let's not forget that, let's not forget in that that, what we did was expand to disability, as well. We expand the, the definition of disability coverage in all of this. Very important.

Ted Simons: And if, if there is a violation here, what happens? How much of a fine, how much of a penalty?

Tom Simplot: Unlike most cities and most ordinances, hours back in the early 90s, went with the criminal penalty. And now, the big question, and then those that oppose the actions said it should not be a criminal penalty. The fact is it's a higher threshold to prove so those who are against all of this two decades ago, imposed the criminal sanction as a higher threshold, a higher threshold to meet. So, it's, actually, instead of going the civil route, it's, it's actually, a little easier with the criminal. So, what happens is, if there is a violation, staff will go in, and negotiate a settlement, much like they would with a civil sanction, and the ultimate action would be the criminal but we have absolutely no history in two decades of anyone being, being convict for, for the criminal action.

Ted Simons: And that's why the $, fine would be --

Tom Simplot: Yes.

Ted Simons: Ok. There was an agreement that exempts religious organizations. What constitutes a religious organization?

Tom Simplot: They would have to be a bonified organization, a c or a church exemption much like any of the ordinances across the country.

Ted Simons: There were some who are against this ordinance, they said the public was, was, I think the, "was purposely mislead on this aspect of the ordinance." How do you respond to that?

Tom Simplot: I agree with that. I think the publisher was misled. There was a scare tactic that was orchestrated by one city council member, in particular, and I think that the whole goal was to, to look at the public outcry about this, and I think it was more for political gain.

Ted Simons: And I will say that city council member, he's the one who thinks that the public was misled on the religious issue. That it was run through quickly and the public didn't have a chance to realize what it met.

Tom Simplot: And I would, I guess that I would disagree. It might be fun to have a debate on that issue alone. To see who was misleading whom.

Ted Simons: All right, and also, exempt, we have got private clubs, and senior housing, and small private landlords. Why are they exempt?

Tom Simplot: Small private landlords, historically, that, that group is exempt because, because along line of the religious organizations, and I disagree with it myself, but over the course of the past several decades, as the laws grew, across the country, they simply exempt out the small pop and pop business, and landlords. So, what we did, instead of actually going further deep, we extended the law horizontally. So, we included the lgbt community, the transgender community and the disability, as well, and we did not change the depth of the law, which we have had since.

Ted Simons: Ok, but, again, senior housing and private clubs, not included because, because they are just not --

Tom Simplot: Private clubs, yeah. Probably too hard to enforce, but we did not want to touch that. We did not want to go into those areas and try to fight those battles. We really truly wanted to go across the top and bring in the full gamut.

Ted Simons: It seems as though the biggest argument involves bathrooms and, and the critics are calling this a bathroom bill, allowing transgender to use ladies' bathrooms. First all, is that a concern? And, and if not, why not?

Tom Simplot: It's not a concern. Again, for political gain, it was a great way to label, to label the ordinance. And it sure took hold. That's what people were calling it everywhere. And this is not about bathroom use, this is about, about discrimination and protecting those who are being discriminated against, and I think council member Felda Williams summed it up well, when she did a shout out to the transgendered women in the audience, and said you are gorgeous and any one of you are welcome into the bathroom any time.

Ted Simons: But, again, if it was a wedge issue and, and if it didn't have much traction it would have not gotten anywhere. It sounds like this was a contentious hearing and a lot of folks, it sounds like this touches a nerve with a lot of folks?

Tom Simplot: Absolutely. And it's always going to be contentious, but it's always going to be contentious with a very small minority across America. And we see that in every state, and in every community, the more pander to groups that hate and discriminate, the worse we all are. And that's what we saw, that's, that's the good news of what we saw last week. The right side won.

Ted Simons: What about regulatory burdens on small business, that was brought up, as well?

Tom Simplot: Absolutely. To me, it's a where he had herring. The attorneys tried to state that that would increase the burdens on small business, and yet, to be proven. That's not the track record that we have seen with the ordinance that we have had since.

Ted Simons: With so many people, and it may have been a minority, but with so many people against it, again, there was a concern that this was being rushed through. Originally and even after everyone kind of caught wind of what was going on. Valid concern?

Tom Simplot: From my standpoint and perspective, no, not at all. This issue has been going on since again, . The council first tackled it when Mayor Johnson was Mayor, and they could not get the full protection that they sought so they just kind of let it just sit there for two decades. And if two decades is moving things too fast, then we're in trouble. And it's about, about time we got around to fixing this law, and we finally finished the job.

Ted Simons: Councilman, good to have here and thanks for joining us.

Tom Simplot: Appreciate it.

Gabriel’s Angels

  |   Video
  • Gabriel’s Angels brings pet therapy to abused, neglected and at-risk children throughout Arizona. The organization, with offices in Phoenix and Tucson, was named after Gabriel, the first dog to be used in therapy. The Angels are the kids receiving the help. Gabriel’s Angels has nearly 150 Therapy Teams delivering pet therapy to over 100 agencies. Gabriel’s Angels founder and CEO Pam Gaber will tell us more.
  • Pam Gaber - Founder and CEO, Gabriel’s Angels
Category: Community   |   Keywords: children, homes, pets, dogs, ,

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Ted Simons: We look at Gabriel's Angels, a nonprofit that uses pet therapy to help abused and neglected children. The organization is named after Gabriel, the group's original therapy dog and the angels are the kids receiving help. Here now is Pam Gaber, founder and CEO of Gabriel's Angels. I've been looking forward to this

Pam Gaber: me, too.

Ted Simons: Kids and dogs, nary a discouraging word. How did this program develop?

Pam Gaber: I always say it started on accident but continues on purpose. I was volunteering at the crisis nursery in Phoenix. And I was telling the children occasionally about my new puppy, Gabriel, and right when Gabriel turned a year old I brought him to their Christmas party dress as Rudolph. The only reason I brought him, I wanted the children to meet this dog they knew so much about, and that day they were different. Instead of being angry and violent, they were loving and kind and would hug Gabriel, and we all watched in amazement as this animal reached children like no adult could.

Ted Simons: And we see a couple of shots there. Gabriel is chasing butterflies in a different world now probably.

Pam Gaber: He is, he is.

Ted Simons: But, this is such -- talk about the kids now that you are dealing with this. These are special kids themselves.

Pam Gaber: Yeah, we do a with abused and neglect and at-risk youth here in Arizona. The children we visit are somewhat desensitized, and they are not attached to their mom or to their dad. So, they need to form an attachment so they can then learn empathy and compassion, affiliation, tolerance, and core behaviors that help children exit the cycle violence. And really, the dogs become the teachers those core behaviors because once the therapy dog keeps coming back, and keeps coming back, kids go, you know, maybe trust doesn't always lead to disappointment. Gabriel came back.

Ted Simons: It's the unconditional love they were not getting.

Pam Gaber: No matter what day the child had, that therapy dog will go in and say, you are a great kid, and you are a great kid, and by the way, you are a great kid.

Ted Simons: How do teach them to have responsibility, tolerance, and we have empathy and trust, these a lot of things for, for a kid who has been around the block few times, more times than they should have been. And how do you work this?

Amy Hillman: We know that they lack these behaviors, so our program is designed around activities that bring the children in closer contact with the therapy dog, so, all the activities are age appropriate. And as the children will brush the therapy dog. They will listen to the dog's heartbeat, and you know, then they will listen to their own heartbeat, and go animals have feelings, too. I can trust this creature that keeps coming back. Believe it or not, they will brush teeth. And that's a beautiful empathy building exercise. Older children do basic obedience skills but we need to begin that trusting relationship because once trust happens, and children develop empathy. And they will fill the need of the therapy dog, where before they might not fill the need because they lacked empathy.

Ted Simons: And we are seeing in that, that this bulldog up there, is just a star.

Pam Gaber: Bubba.

Ted Simons: They put a stethoscope, and he was going yeah.

Pam Gaber: You know, it's amazing, it's that connection between children and animals, really, that goes the magic of Gabriel's Angels.

Ted Simons: Let's talk about results. are you seeing results, what kind results, how quickly?

Pam Gaber: I am a little analytical, believe it or not so for the past seven years we've been doing formal program evaluations, and taking those core behaviors that we spoke about, and go direct to the care-takers and say, do you see changes in the children in any of the core behaviors? They rate it on the scale, and I have seven to eight years of data now that shows us that trust and attachment is the primary skill that children learn with the therapy dog, and without trust and attachment, these children are not going to make it. From that, we then go oh, now they are showing some empathy.

Ted Simons: How quickly are you seeing these results?

Pam Gaber: Happens over time, to be candid. When children are desensitized, it can take time. We have recently launched through the help of the Virginia piper trust a one-on-one intervention program. We always have worked with groups of children. And we're now working with the most severely abused and neglected with the councilor, with the therapy dog and the owner, and the dog becomes written into the treatment program. So, it's ground-breaking.

Ted Simons: And I don't know how best to ask this, but, when you got this dog, it's absolutely unconditional love, and just absolutely fantastic for these kids. Yet, this is not the real world. How do emphasize to the kids, yes, you are getting unconditional love from the dogs, but, you don't want to set them up for future disappointment.

Pam Gaber: And you might be eluding to the fact that when in that child leaves, Gabriel won't be there. Or Gabriel won't be coming there forever. So those kids deal with loss, as well, but it's also part of life that, that children will -- things will come into their life that's really great, and things really great will leave their life, but it's done in a way with caring and compassion, and certainly, as these children go back into their environment, you know, we hope that it's a better environment than the one they were pulled from or they would not be going back, and now they know what empathy and come bags is because it's a paradigm shift, and if all they know is anger and violence, that's how I will react but if I know compassion and empathy, I can choose that, and we're giving these kids a chance to make that choice, where all they know is to defend themselves with behaviors that don't work well in the real world.

Ted Simons: What age groups do you think work best?

Pam Gaber: From infant up to age 18, I'm a big fan of teenage boys. These kids are going to be out sooner rather than later, and at that point, it becomes a relationship with the handler of the therapy dog, as well as the dog, itself. We work with all age groups, and you know, when you could see a hardened teenage girl from Florence break down the wall and to learn trust and look forward to something, that's going to happen with the therapy dog, it's amazing.

Ted Simons: And where do you find these dogs? Do they need, to they have special training?

Pam Gaber: Real special. They liver at home with their owners. And so, your service dog is a dog that would be a guide dog, the dog that's at home, sleeping on the bed right a great pet and therapy dogs are somewhere in the middle. These volunteer therapy teams, and they work with their animal, and they become registered through therapy dog, inc.

Ted Simons: Is there a possibility, we talked about the fact that, you know, get to the real world, it's not the same as the unconditional love, what happens if the kid connects so much they want to keep the pet?

Pam Gaber: The doggie has to go home. And that's another life lesson for the children. They will cry when you leave because they think that you are never coming back, but you go back the next week, and they might cry when you leave that week, but the third, fourth, and fifth week, they don't need to cry because they knew Gabriel was coming back.

Ted Simons: We have about 30 seconds left, when you started this, and you had an idea, and a vision for this, is what's happening now, what thought would happen?

Pam Gaber: I had no idea that we would be serving, abused and neglected and at-risk youth a year. I always say this, in my best day, which child abuse ends I will close my doors.

Ted Simons: Yes.

Pam Gaber: I had no idea of the need. We're Arizona and statewide now, and that's our dream is let's help the kids.

Ted Simons: Thank you are doing fantastic work and thank you very much for everything that do. And thank you for joining us.

New ASU Business School Dean

  |   Video
  • Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business has a new Dean. She is Amy Hillman, the first female dean of the school. Previously, she was Executive Dean of W.P. Carey, a world-renowned management expert, popular teacher and noted researcher. Hillman will talk about her new role and her goals for the school.
  • Amy Hillman - Dean, ASU W.P. Carey School of Business
Category: Education   |   Keywords: ASU, carey, business, school, education, dean, ,

View Transcript
Ted Simons: ASU's W.P. Carey School of Business has a new Dean. She is Amy Hillman, and she is the first woman to serve as Dean of the school. Amy Hillman joins us now to talk about her new role. Good to have here and thank you very much for joining us.

Amy Hillman: Thank you.

Ted Simons: Is it important to you that you are the first woman to be the Dean of the school?

Amy Hillman: Well, I wouldn't say it's important to me. But, I think it's important to a lot of people in the business world that gender stereotypes fall, whether it be in corporate America or academia, so, I think that it's, it really says something about kind of the direction that business, and business schools are going into.

Ted Simons: And we should mention for four years you were the executive Dean at the school, so, you were there, and you were in a tool position. What did learn?

Amy Hillman: Oh, I learned a lot. I learned a lot about how to, to really try to interact with our corporate partners, and our alumni to make sure that we're offering a world class curriculum, try to work with faculty and students to make sure that, that they are really -- the students are the center of all of our attention, and we're making sure that they are graduating with what we hope that they do.

Ted Simons: How do you do the balance between research, business partnerships, and just plain teaching, how do you balance that?

Amy Hillman: I think for some of us, if you level those things, the problem is, how do you squeeze any life in, and because balancing all of those important dimensions of the career the fun that we have.

Ted Simons: But how do you do that? How do make sure that the teaching responsibilities done when there is emphasis on research and there is an emphasis on business partnerships?

Amy Hillman: Sure, there is, the research and the business partnerships, basically, what informs our teaching. And if you are not making the time to do your research, then, you are not able to go back into the classroom and say, this is what we're learning by study this same thing in a different industry. Or, if you are not keeping a pulse on things that companies find important, you are not able to go in and say, this is exactly how you are going to use these skills, when you are out in the workforce.

Ted Simons: In other schools, are you familiar with other schools in the sense of how they, they approach change? It seems like in a lot of universities, ASU is a very different kind of a University, not a lot of standing still going on, on any of the campuses, and yet, on other universities, they are living off reputation, and they are not maybe moving but they are emphasizing what they have got, and lots folks are attracted to that, how do you work that whole thing?

Amy Hillman: You know, I think that we find that the pace of ASU is real attraction. And for, for our faculty and our staff, and our students. Our students know that if they come up with great ideas, we'll follow them, so, we've been hearing that that, students want more sales and marketing. And, and they needed some more help in getting jobs in those areas, and so we, we created a new certificate in it last year. So, ASU is not like the rest of the universities, but I think that it is the one thing that really sets us apart, and for the right student staff and faculty, it could not be any better.

Ted Simons: So what’s your vision for the school?

Amy Hillman: You know, we're going to keep on doing things that we do well. I think we're already very good at, at student eccentric focus, I would say, but, we're really going to try to do better at, at push harder and deeper into the corporate partnerships, and make sure that, that we are doing everything that we can to make sure that our employees, the future employees are as successful as they can be in businesses and in their careers. So, we'll be focus on that and focused a lot more on, on the alumni engagement.

Ted Simons: And that's very important. I think that ranked top 3 in undergrad and NBA program, correct?

Amy Hillman: Yes.

Ted Simons: How do you improve on that?

Amy Hillman: We can always get to the top and after that, but, we always just would like to see ourselves in the top of the business schools, and so we think that there is always a way to improve.

Ted Simons: And last question, this may sound like an odd question because I've been in academia for so long, but, I am always interested when business, professors and leaders in schools, are not in business themselves. How come?

Amy Hillman: Mostly it's because the job demands being an academic. It's so difficult to then also be a practicing business manager. So, I had a career before I went back to get my Ph.D. And I was getting my mba at nights and on weekends to be a better manager. And then I kind of got hooked. I had faculty who made huge difference in my life. And I thought, if I could do that for one student, I would be a lot more fulfilled than in the corporate environment.

Ted Simons: Congratulations on the position, and good luck there at W.P. Carey School of Business.

Amy Hillman: Thank you very much.