PATERSON, NJ - Clergy, community leaders, elected officials, and residents are set to march through Paterson’s First and Fourth Wards on Saturday calling for an end to the violence that has plagued the city.
The 13th Annual Prayer March for Peace, organized by the Paterson CeaseFire Group, will step off at Cobb Park at 10:00 a.m. and proceed to the Paterson Public Library on Broadway.
Reverend Allan Boyer told TAPinto Paterson that marchers will stop several times along the way, at locations where victims of violence have lost their lives, to pray. Each year the march is held on the Saturday before Palm Sunday, a significant day in the Christian calendar, as a way of reminding the community of the importance of prayer.
“This violence has to stop,” Boyer said adding that everyone who wants to a safer community needs to be involved, working in concert with law enforcement. “The community has got to do their part.”
Echoing a sentiment made on Friday by Paterson Public Safety Director Jerry Speziale that the individuals responsible for the violence are a tiny minority of the population, Boyer said that everyone, including mothers and grandmothers, have to start reporting when they see signs of their children going down the wrong path, and finding ways to intercede earlier.
“We are not going to legislate or arrest are way out of violence,” Boyer said. “We need to bring back jobs, give them better education, get to the root of the problem.”
The scourge of violence in not one that Paterson suffers from alone, Boyer said, but there is a clear commonality among the places where it occurs most often, they are poor urban communities.
“If we do something to address that, the violence will come to a halt.”
TAPinto Paterson is committed to being a part of the solution to end the violence.
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