ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ7)— After three weekend shootings in less than 48 hours in the city of Roanoke, the Task Force to Reduce Gun Violence held its monthly meeting to discuss some of the issues at hand.
The people on the task force said the weekend shootings have discouraged them, but they said it makes them want to work harder and to address the root causes of these problems, like more positive reinforcement for children at a younger age.
“The general consensus is that it’s upsetting, for the city and even more so for us because this is something that we are working on,” said task force chair Shakira Williams.
Williams helped to lead Monday’s conversation. She said in the months since the group was formed, they have been trying to work more efficiently in smaller working groups to tackle root problems.
“From what we’ve seen, a lot of these people committing these acts of violence are very young, so trying to reach them and trying to work in prevention by getting to them before these incidents happen is one of our goals,” Williams said.
With repetitive violence in some of the communities constantly hit, it can sometimes feel like nothing is being done in those communities. Williams said through spreading their message and looking at long-term goals, they are confident that gun violence will decrease with time.
“I wish there was a faster resolution to the problem, I even wish that we had all of the answers for the questions, but I’m optimistic, I do expect positive results in the future,” Williams said.
The task force is working to create a Response Reset Team that will go out when violence happens and help talk to victims in the community. They also want to have a hotline that people can call if they need to talk to someone.
The Gun Violence Task Force will meet next on February 10.
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