Students, leaders team up to 'Stop the Violence'

Posted at 8:55 PM, May 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-08 11:32:50-04

A group of KU students and local neighborhood leaders from KCMO teamed up Saturday afternoon to ‘Stop The Violence.’

Saturday’s event, an extension of the well-known campaign, was a BBQ hangout at Harris Park as well as a chance for those in the neighborhood to greet one another and promote positive change.

"We think by bringing people together, giving them fun things to do, like color, play basketball, food, music, it's a great way to do that,” said KU masters student Joey Platt.

Henry Harris has lived on the block since 1965 and has seen his fair share of violence over the years. He believes Saturday’s event was a good step toward change.

“When you're fightin’ the problem, not what caused the problem, it's gonna spread throughout the whole universe,” he said.

Rosie Williams, who grew up in the same home as Harris, thinks getting local kids the right mentors and access to positive activities is what’s mostly needed in KCMO.

"We as, parents, grandparents, we just need to do more. We send our kids off to get rid of them. So you think they don't feel that?” she said.

Kansas City, Missouri, has been home to at least 33 homicides so far in 2016 and is on pace to surpass the 100  mark for the year yet again.

It’s a troubling concern for Mayor Sly James, who mentioned the high crime rate in an interview with the media just days ago.

"We need to lower our crime rates, and we're doing as much as we can on that, but we still have a long way to go,” said James.


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