Sacto 9-1-1
March 8, 2013
Sacramento clergy leaders ask for Measure U funds to expand anti-violence program

Clergy leaders from across Sacramento gathered at City Hall today to advocate for more funding to expand the Ceasefire anti-violence program to more communities in the city.

ACT.JPGThe leaders, who comprise the nonprofit Sacramento Area Congregations Together, are asking that city leaders designate $2 million a year from Measure U sales tax revenues to Ceasefire.

"We know Ceasefire has worked for our community and it can continue to work," said Pastor Pat Rivers of For His Glory Baptist Church in Del Paso Heights. "We cannot, we should not wait until Sacramento reaches even more disastrous levels of violence to make serious investments in this issue."

Ceasefire is a program that targets gang members who drive violence in communities and offers them services to help them leave the gang lifestyle. The program has been duplicated in cities across the nation with positive results. It began in Sacramento in 2010.

tamesha.JPGTamesha Ellison, whose 20-year-old son, DeAndre, was shot to death in 2011, issued a personal plea for city leaders to dedicate resources to ending street violence.

"People, this is an urgent alert," said Ellison, 36. "The killings have to stop."

Photo caption: Tamesha Ellison holds a program from her son DeAndre's funeral. DeAndre was 20 when he was fatally shot in January 2011. Credit: Kim Minugh

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