SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Greater Springfield community walking in solidarity on Waverly Street attracting attention with signs listing the names of murder victims in Springfield.
“There is all kinds of violence in our lives,” said Pastor Lauren Holm of the Greater Springfield Campaign for Non-violence. “You know you can become numb to the kind of violence and so instead we’re trying to get people to take a step back and realize there are alternatives and we can seek them and we can be the change.”
They want the community to acknowledge different forms of violence and address the root causes.
“What could I do as one individual? Well there’s actually a lot you can do as one individual. And so by neighbors getting together and knowing each other and keeping an eye on things, walking through the neighborhoods putting in better lighting it really deters crime,” Pastor Holm continued.
Pastor Holm developed this cohort in Springfield nine years ago. Since then, they have walked the streets of high crime neighborhoods in Springfield. Pastor Holm told 22News they are taking action to build a long term movement for active non-violence in the city and beyond.
“There are a lot of people that are trying to make their cities safer places and so we all share that with each other, we learn from each other, and try to employ strategies we know that’ll work locally,” she said.
The Greater Springfield Campaign for Non-violence group believes that starting a community conversation will help the community explore new ways to build a peace-filled city together.