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Jonesboro Conversation About Gun Violence Nets Possible Solutions

Gun violence among Arkansas’ youth continues to rise. In a virtual conversation Monday (last) night, several Jonesboro community members talked about how to address the problem. Chair of the N-Double A-C-P of Craighead County Emma Agnew says over the past several weeks in Jonesboro alone, there have been at least nine shootings, most involving Black youths.

According to data from the F-B-I in 2020, shootings and homicides across the country rose over 30-percent. Gun violence involving those between 10 and 19 increased 21-percent in the same year.

Panelists say the community must be engaged to start solving the problem of violence. Potential solutions included ending the stigma of mental health issues and taking that problem seriously, educating parents on how to safely and securely store guns in homes, connecting parents with resources to provide positive role models throughout the community, and providing community support with action from community members. The coalition plans to meet again in the next few weeks. More information is at the Craighead County N-Double A-C-P Facebook Page.

Click on the Listen button for the entire conversation. Panelists include:

Moderator-Emma Agnew, President of the Craighead County NAACP

Reverend Jeremy Jones, Pastor of the St. Paul AME Church in Jonesboro

Dr. Rebekah Evans, Moms Demanding Action

Shamal Cater, Crowley's Ridge Development Council

Kenneth Thomas, Senior, Pastor of the Bethesda Worship and Healing Center in Jonesboro

Dr. Asad Khan, Mid South Health Systems.

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