Local Clergy To Hold Meeting To Fight The Violence

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) - Church and community leaders are coming together to combat violent crime and empower young people across Memphis. A meeting is being held Tuesday night at Bloomfield Baptist Church in south Memphis.

Those leading the meeting says it’s a jumping off point, putting volunteers directly in neighborhoods, and helping young people carry on a different path.

Of the 98 Memphis homicide victims in 2017, Bloomfield Baptist Pastor Ralph White said the shooting death of two-year-old Laylah Washington earlier this month hit him especially hard.

"It really energized me, I've got grandkids and great grandkids at that age,” says Pastor White.

Laylah's unsolved case inspired Tuesday’s meeting to take action, and take back the streets.

"We've been having too many pep rallies but no one is going to the game. It's time we come together,” says White.

Pastor White said the goal is to coordinate with churches in other neighborhoods, and have volunteers take a hands on approach in Memphis' most crime-ridden areas.

"Implementing programs that will help these young kids, getting them ready for jobs and so forth, but first we have to get their attention, have them to know that we are really concerned about them,” says White.

Laylah's uncle Terry Washington tells Local 24 he plans to attend and appreciates the effort, even if he's not entirely optimistic.

"They cannot do it by themselves, like I said, the police department can't do it by themselves, if the community doesn't come together, it's only going to get worse,” Washington.

 

The meeting starts at 6:00 p.m. at Bloomfield Baptist Church on South Parkway near I-55.


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