Mayor joins African American city leaders in calls for end to violence

CREATED May 19, 2014

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MILWAUKEE -- They met in a park under sunny skies, but the agenda focused on a much darker reality.

On Monday Mayor Tom Barrett joined Alderman Ashanti Hamilton and the rest of the Black Male Achievement Advisory Committee (BMAAC) meeting. Together, the group lamented the recent spike in violence -- the meeting took place just blocks from where a young man and his step daughter were shot May 14 near N. 25th St. and W. Capitol Dr.
 
Alderman Hamilton, chair of the BMAAC, talked a lot about the factors he thinks lead to the rise in crime: high unemployment and segregation.
 
"What makes a person so frustrated to have such a depraved heart that he doesn't care than an 11 year old is in his crossfire?" Hamilton cried to the audience. "Where does it come from?"
 
More than 100 people attended the meeting, including people who experienced the pain and loss from city violence.
 
"There needs to be action -- that's what is really about," Atone Bishop told TODAY'S TMJ4. "Talk is cheap, unless it's going to be backed by some action."
 
The advisory committee is composed of representatives from the federal, state, county, and city government levels, as well as community members from community-based organizations, non-profits and the faith community.