McClinton and Gateway to Re-Entry launch new movement to unite communities against gun violence

PA House Democratic Leader Joanna McClinton and the nonprofit Gateway to Re-Entry used Labor Day this year to cut the ribbon on a new labor movement to unite their neighborhoods against gun violence.

“A record number of lives have already been taken way too soon because of this public health crisis. We have a responsibility to provide a safe place for our children to play and our neighbors to live,” said McClinton, D-Phila./Delaware. “I am fortunate to work with organizations like Gateway to Re-Entry that not only understand this but are also willing to put in the work to move us closer to that reality.”

Community members and their families came out Monday to the 5400 block of Belmar Street to participate in the family friendly event, where children enjoyed a safe environment to play ball and eat ice cream while joining in the call for peace.

“The calm, unity and happiness we experienced during our gathering should be the norm. Kids should be able to play outside and enjoy being kids without having to fear for their lives,” said Tracey Fisher, CEO of Gateway to Re-Entry. “We are grateful for local leaders like state Representative McClinton, who shares our commitment to invest in these types of grassroots efforts and address issues connected to gun violence moving forward, like poverty, as we work to take back our streets one block at a time.”

Fisher added he’s been in contact with formerly incarcerated individuals who helped make this latest movement to give the streets back to the youth a reality.

In a similar effort, Philadelphia is still collecting applications for its Anti-Violence Community Grant Expansion funding from local groups and organizations with a proven track record of reducing violence. The deadline to apply is Friday, Sept. 17.