Carly Hensley, Community Engagement Specialist with FUSIAN, will lead a self-defense training on Thursday, August 10 from 4-6 p.m. at High Line Car House (550 S. High Street).
Food service workers, as well as the general public, are invited to attend.
“I am honored to lead this self-defense class with others in my industry and those supporting the life and memory of Reagan Tokes,” Hensley said. “No one ever wants to think of themselves as a victim. However, it is imperative to prepare yourself in case that becomes a reality.”
In February 2017, Tokes, an employee of Bodega and FUSIAN restaurants, was abducted while leaving her evening shift in the Short North. Her presence is strongly felt throughout the Central Ohio restaurant community.
“I am saddened that we will not be able to attend the event of empowerment the evening of August 10th in memory of our daughter, Reagan Tokes. We are grateful to the Columbus Restaurant Alliance, Carly Hensley of FUSIAN, City Councilwoman Elizabeth Brown, State Representative Kristin Boggs and all others involved in promoting this event. It takes courage to step up to the plate to do something to inspire change, to take action, to educate and empower employees and to improve work place environments and practices,” said Lisa McCrary-Tokes.
Columbus City Councilwoman Elizabeth Brown and State Representative Kristin Boggs will both be in attendance.
“It is exciting to see businesses take action to address their employees’ needs – even those that extend beyond the doors of the restaurant,” said Councilwoman Brown. “Across all our neighborhoods, no person should ever feel helpless, especially those who work late hours.”
State Rep. Boggs is working on legislation that would address needed reforms to better protect the public from repeated violent offenders. Her bill will be named after Reagan Tokes.
"The current system failed Reagan, and it is in tribute to her life that we will be pushing for some common sense legislative changes to prevent this from happening to again," Rep. Boggs said. "I believe legislative action, and programs like this, will be instrumental in preventing violent crimes from happening in our community."
“We agree with State Rep. Boggs, the system failed Reagan and change is desperately needed on a multitude of levels to prevent a tragedy like this from occurring again. We are actively, continually, pursuing legislative change behind the scenes to the current laws that are in place that allowed these failures to occur, in addition, we are in communication with city officials on ways to improve the safety of Columbus for its citizens so a tragedy like ours could possibly be prevented in the future. We are thankful that many are joining our crusade to ACT in honor of Reagan, for actions conquer tragedy. Our action is fueled by faith, love and loss,” McCrary-Tokes added.