WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Members of Winston-Salem’s Public Safety Committee will discuss youth gun violence at an upcoming meeting, following the murders of two teenagers in October.
Police say both 16-year-old Jayden Jamison and Jumil Robertson were shot and killed less than two weeks apart.
Assistant City Manager Tasha Logan Ford said Tuesday that gun violence will be discussed in the committee’s upcoming November meeting.
“I think it’s important for the community to realize that we are concerned about this just as the residents are,” Ford said.
She explained that the committee would review statistics, look for possible trends and review programs that could help curb violence.
“It’s always an ongoing conversation in our community in terms of how do we make sure we have a safe environment for all of our residents,” Ford said. “We realize that when we have some of our youngest members involved in this activity, that there are things on a number of different levels that need to be addressed.”
James Perry of the Winston-Salem Urban League said that the organization plans to ask the council for additional funds to expand their annual summer employment program.
Perry explained that the program helped keep teenagers out of trouble during warmer months.
“Looking at these concerns, we want to make sure that more young people, people 15-19, have something to do this summer,” Perry said. “Give them a sense of meaning, help them learn a trade and a lot of times that puts them on the right path.”
Ford said while the city has a number of partnerships, they want residents to remain involved too.
“We also realize that this is not a situation we can necessarily police our way out of. We spend a lot of time working to build relationships with the community members with neighborhoods,” Ford said. “Residents have to be actively engaged in the information that they’re able to share. When they see things that are not quite right in their neighborhood, they never know what that piece of information might do so that we can help address situations before they become violent.“
The meeting will be held on Nov. 12 at 6 p.m. at City Hall.