Melissa will host the second in a series of media arts workshops with Downtown Community Television (DCTV) in East Harlem on Friday, based around DCTV’s Beyond Bullets documentary. These workshops, which will be held at local youth organizations, help facilitate discussions on gun violence in the community. The workshops include a short screening of the film and a discussion that covers topics ranging from gun laws, police-community relations and community solutions for violence. The first workshop in this series was held on Thursday at Harlem RBI and a third workshop will take place at Peace on the Street in East Harlem. There is also plans for one in the Mott Haven area in the coming weeks. We hope to see you there!
WHO: Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito and DCTV
WHAT: Beyond Bullets Media Arts Workshops
WHEN: Friday, June 14, 2013, 10:30 AM
WHERE: Youth Build, 206-08 East 118th Street, East Harlem
In the wake of the tragic Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, so many across the country are clamoring for aggressive action to tighten restrictions around guns at the federal level. Right here in NYC, leaders and Council Members are also calling for a large-scale gun recovery initiative. This initiative would be a way for the city government to do its part and honor the memories of the 20 children and 6 adults whose lives were cut short last Friday by ensuring that we take steps to reduce the scourge of gun violence.
Melissa supports and stands behind a gun recovery initiative that will help prevent another tragedy, like in Newtown, and instances in our district, from happening again. District 8 has not been a stranger to unnecessary gun violence and tragic murders. The fact is that as crime in NYC has been decreasing, it has been increasing in East Harlem, as per NYPD statistics. Just this Monday, a 57 year old woman was wounded by a stray bullet on 116th and Fifth Avenue and not even an hour later, a 17 year old boy was shot in the face on 109th Street and Second Avenue. This is completely unacceptable and scarily becoming the norm.
A parent should never have to question their child’s safety at school or on a street in their neighborhood – a change must be made and Melissa remains dedicated to the cause. By strengthening and implementing gun buyback programs and a homicide reduction program, we can make the streets a safer place. “This is something we all have a role in. This is something we are tired of. We want peace in our streets,” Melissa said.
“We cannot afford to lose one more child in this city to senseless gun violence,” Melissa added. “To truly tighten gun control, we need the help of our partners in state and federal government, but there are things we can do here in New York City to help make our streets safer. A citywide gun recovery initiative is one of those things. The killing of so many young children in Newtown was an unspeakable tragedy. On so many occasions, our communities have also experienced the pain of children being taken from us too soon as a result of gun violence. I thank Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez and all of my colleagues who are adding their voice to this effort.”
This past Thursday, December 13th, ironically the night before the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy, Melissa marched with over 70 young people through El Barrio/ East Harlem calling for peace in our streets and an end to the senseless violence among young people that we’ve seen in recent years.
Everyone could feel the energy and passion in the air as the teens and their family members chanted in unison, “Put the Guns down, Throw ya Peace Signs Up,” and “No more silence, Stop the Violence!”, amplifying their voices throughout the neighborhood.
The march ended at 106th Street and 3rd avenue where Melissa spoke, along with Reverend Sean Gardner from East Ward Baptist Church, and several youth about why they were there as well as their visions for positive alternatives to violence. Melissa told us about her experience attending a grief session earlier that afternoon for Aubrey Jackson, a teenager who died last week after having been in a coma for 6 months due to an assault in the Taft Housing Development. She reiterated that violence and death cannot be tolerated as the norm for East Harlem’s younger generation.
We could have never foreseen what tragedy would strike the very next morning just 60-miles north of our community. This tragedy will only strengthen our commitment to ending gun violence and standing up for peace in our community and across the country.
Please march with us this Thursday to support peace in El Barrio/East Harlem. “PUT THE GUNS DOWN, THROW THE PEACE SIGNS UP.” We’d love to see you there with anti-violence signs and noise makers. Let’s unite to support peace in our community!
WHO: Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito & the El Barrio/East Harlem Youth Violence Task Force; to be joined by youth, parents, schools, families, CBO’s and elected officials
WHAT: El Barrio/East Harlem Community Anti-Violence Peace March
WHEN: Thursday, December 13, 2012; 4 PM – 6 PM. Leaving promptly at 4:30 PM.
WHERE: At 4 PM, we will meet at 116th and Madison. Departing promptly at 4:30 PM, we will head east on 116th Street, south on Lexington Avenue and east on 106th Street to 3rd Avenue, where the march will end at the East Harlem Holiday Tree Lighting Ceremony.
Occupy the Corner with Council Member Melissa Mark-Viverito
EAST HARLEM – 1st Ave @ 104th Street!
Saturday, September 8th
Come take part in a Peaceful Gathering for Change
Stop the Violence!
Say NO to GUNS! Yes to more Youth Programs!
Matthew Shaw was a motivated young man who was loved by many. His life was tragically cut short on July 4, 2012 just before midnight. Matthew was visiting home briefly in-between graduating from Le Moyne College in Syracuse with his Bachelors of Science degree in Business Administration and Finance, and starting his Master’s at SUNY Albany University for economics. While stepping out with a couple of friends to go to the store, he was fatally shot in the chest at 112 East 128th Street in front of AK Houses. There have been no arrests made in connection to the shooting.
Matthew’s wake will be held tomorrow, July 12, 2012, at the Unity Funeral Chapel (2352 Frederick Douglass Boulevard). Viewing hours are between 3 and 7 PM which will be immediately followed by the service at 7 PM.