Milwaukee city leaders call for peace during 4th of July weekend

NOW: Milwaukee city leaders call for peace during 4th of July weekend

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Milwaukee city leaders are calling for a peaceful weekend ahead of the Fourth of July holiday.

City and community leaders gathered on the south side of the city with a call to action. “We as a community have to come together to reduce the violence in this city and I’m calling on everyone," said Mayor Tom Barrett.

There has been a staggering spike in violence in the city. Since last year, homicides have doubled. According to the Milwaukee Police Department, there have been 86 homicides to date. This time last year, there were 43. Non-fatal shootings are up by 50-percent.

Reggie Moore, director of the Office of Violence Prevention says many of them were domestic violence related, early on. “No child, woman or individual in our community should fear being shot or fear being killed in this city or any city,” he said.

Many families have been dealing with tough times, including unemployment, coronavirus, and racial tensions likely exacerbating the problem.

“There’s a lot of pent up frustration, anger and restlessness,” said Cavalier Johnson, Common Council President.

Violence interrupters urge people in the community to talk it out. “It’s okay to talk it out, it don’t make you a sucka. It makes you a man, it makes you a woman,” said a member of the program 414Life.

Barrett added MPD officers will be patrolling over the weekend, but they can’t be on every corner, so everyone needs to work together to prevent the violence.

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