During a summer of violence that now has extended into the Fall, Chicago has seen over gun violence escalate to over 3,700 shootings resulting in over 630 deaths. With nearly 3 months left in 2021, this pace is on track to exceed last year’s total of 775 killings in the City. With shootings up dramatically over last year, residents rightfully have feared for their lives while being trapped in their communities. Additionally, car jackings, which are on pace to be the highest number in 20 years, have been another reason why residents no longer feel safe in Chicago.
With this as a backdrop in communities of color, residents have continued to be frustrated at the lack of successful interventions that make a difference in policing, reductions in violence and increased safety. Simply stated: Residents aren’t safe in Chicago and the perception that Chicago is an unsafe City due to gun culture, is now the reality.
On Saturday October 16, 2021, community activist Jonathan Todd along with Custom Resources NFP, Chicago Community Activism, First Place Campaigns, Watch Guard-Chicago, Diverse City, and Gorman House Publishing are calling on community leaders, residents, and policymakers and will lead a conversation on Public Safety and Accountability in the Austin neighborhood. Austin, which is GroundZero for shooting deaths, leads the City with 58 homicides to date this year. Jonathan, who is organizing this meeting after recently witnessing street violence in person, says that “the reason for the rising violence is due to the lack of public policy coordination between the intersections of economic development, education and quality housing and jobs.”
The event will be held at the Greater St. John Bible Church located 1256 N. Waller, Chicago IL and begin at 2pm promptly.