SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Dozens gathered Thursday night to address health disparities throughout the city of Springfield.

The Transforming Community Initiative is looking for input from residents on health and racial injustices. Some of the topics discussed Thursday night included violence and trauma, food access and food insecurity, as well as housing and homelessness within the city.

Sarita Hudson, the Director of Programs and Development at the Public Health Institute of Western Massachusetts said, “The goal of the transforming community initiative is to advance racial equity and racial justice to address health equity and include community members in the decision making process.”

Hudson believes that hearing community voices is crucial so that going forward residents have a say in future health proposals within the city.