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Syracuse community rallies for anti-violence funding

Community rallies to request anti-violence funding
Jessica Cain
Community rallies to request anti-violence funding

As Syracuse city lawmakers continue to make plans for the $123 million the city is set to receive from the American Rescue Plan Act, people who live in the city are asking for part of that money to go toward anti-violence initiatives.

Jacqueline Bean, who lives in Syracuse, told people gathered at the Apostolic Church of Jesus Christ that the community needs support. Bean lost her 33-year-old son to violence in 2010. She also lost her father, nephew, and 13-year-old niece.

"My heart hurts,” said Bean. “And it will be hurting until, probably until I leave the Earth myself."

She’s just one of the people asking Mayor Ben Walsh and city lawmakers to make sure anti-violence initiatives are financially supported. The event was put together by organizations including ACTS-Syracuse, SNUG 315 Syracuse, Good Life Foundation, Man Up Inc., OGs Against Gun Violence, Community Emergency Response Team, National Generation Action Network-Syracuse Chapter, and the national group Fund Peace.

Organizers would like to see more support for programs like violence intervention outreach, hospital-based intervention, and therapeutic programs for those who have been traumatized by violence.

“It’s important because our children are dying in our black and brown communities,” said Stephanie Reed from Fund Peace. “Our kids are being shot, just about every day.”

Reed said Syracuse is the 13th city on the organization’s national tour.

"We want to be able to leave a footprint and let you know that when these ARP funds get to your city, if they are allocated correctly, we can actually bring those numbers down,” said Reed. “We know what these grassroots community organizations are doing. It works."

Jessica Cain is a freelance reporter for WRVO, covering issues around central New York. Most recently, Jessica was a package producer at Fox News in New York City, where she worked on major news events, including the 2016 presidential conventions and election. Prior to that, she worked as a reporter and anchor for multiple media outlets in central and northern New York. A Camillus native, Jessica enjoys exploring the outdoors with her daughters, going to the theater, playing the piano, and reading.