Stop the Violence, Anti-gun Violence Town Hall Meeting in Harlem: Create Bonds and Work Together

NEW YORK (TURKISH JOURNAL) – By H. Nazan Işık – Anti-Gun Violence Town Hall  Meeting: is it new?  No,  over the years, a lot of organizations have been organizing it.  And the NYPD Community Affairs Bureau is one of them. 

To get a general idea about gun violence in New York City, let’s have a look at the June 2020 crime statistics.  According to the NYPD’s June 2020 announcement  “For the month of June 2020, the number of people victimized by gun violence and murder in New York City spiked significantly, when compared to the same period in 2019. Between June 1 and June 30, there was a 130% increase in the number of shooting incidents across the city (205 v. 89) as the number of shootings rose in every borough of New York. The number of people murdered citywide increased to 39 v. 30, (+ 30%) for the month, while the number of burglaries increased to 1,783 v. 817 (+118%) and the number of auto thefts increased to 696 v. 462 (+51%) citywide.”

The NYPD Community Affairs Bureau has been organising “Gun Violance Town Hall” meetings in different locations to  discuss the gun violance epidemic.

The last meeting was in Harlem on Thursay, 30 July. 

 The NYPD’s Chief of Community Affairs Jeffrey Maddrey (left), and Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison at the NYPD Community Affairs Bureau Town Hall meeting . (Photo: H. Nazan Işık)

Before the Town Hall Meeting started there was a very festive atmosphere at 143 Street and Lennox Ave , Colonel Charles Young Playground in Harlem, where the event took place. Game trucks, giveaways, food, BBQ, music, scam alert information, domestic violence information by W.A.R.M (We All Really Matter), a basketball game between police officers and teenage community members in the area, rowing machines to exercise and have fun are just some of them.  

At 6:00 pm town hall meeting started.

The NYPD’s Chief of Community Affairs Jeffrey Maddrey and Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison took their seats at the platform to answers questions on gun violence.  

Microphone was there for anyone, who had questions or complains, or suggestions, or just to express their feelings, fears. 

Chief Jeffrey Maddrey’s goal was bringing the police and communities together, creating bonds, trust and confidence, and working together.

This is not new either; we have heard the importance of the relationship between the police and the public from Mayor Bill de Blasio and NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea as well.

NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea (sitting, first on the right side) at the NYPD Community Affairs Bureau Town Hall meeting (Photo: H. Nazan Işık )

Commissioner Shea came late, first he played ball with teenagers, and talked with adults and let everyone take selfies with him.

The NYPD has hosted similar town hall meetings in Brooklyn, and Far Rockaway, Queens.

The next one will take place on August 6, in the Bronx. 

Let’s hope these town hall meetings will be helpful to “STOP THE VIOLENCE” which is the purpose of the meetings,  the goal of Chief of Community Affairs Jeffrey Maddrey.

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