Thomas seeks to hear with students about gun violence Local news

On Thursday, City Council member Isaiah Thomas presented a resolution to hold a hearing analyzing a student survey on gun violence in Philadelphia.

Enough is Enough (EIE) is a group in partnership with the Thomas Office, led by elementary school students who advocate for efforts to prevent gun violence in Philadelphia.

Many teenagers and young people have been victims of gun violence in Philadelphia since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In 2022, there were 56 shootings, including 12 murders, the victims of which are under 18 years old.

The EIE consists of more than 1,300 students aged 12 to 19 from nine Philadelphia high schools – Sankofa Freedom Academy Charter School, Boys Latin of Philadelphia, Imhotep Institute Charter School, Mastery Shoemaker, Mathematics Civics and Science Charter School, Overbrook, Parkway Northwest and Strawberry Mansion. Odenrid Universal Charter School.

“As a board member and coach, I constantly hear too many stories about young people who have been victims of gun violence,” Thomas said. “Although many people think about how it affects our students, I felt that young people lacked a voice in this conversation. So I humbly collaborate with “Enough, Enough” as they conducted a legitimate survey covering the voice of youth in a youth-oriented process. I look forward to analyzing and discussing these polls, as well as the process to best serve our youth. ”

More than 50% (674) of the students surveyed said they were concerned about their safety. In addition, most students (850) indicated that they feared for the safety of their family.

“Enough is enough, and gun violence students play an integral role in combating gun violence in Philadelphia,” said Erica Woods Asico, Coordinator of Enough. “The significance of the EIE Steering Committee is that it is an adult-supported student group that brings together young people from the school district and charter schools. If more of these opportunities are not competition-based, we have a better chance of educating young people who know how to interact with each other, regardless of district, school or zip code. Together, these young people will be ready to stand for the change they want to see in Philadelphia, and they will be ready to lead. ”

According to the survey, the main reasons why students experience so much violence with guns is their involvement in gangs, the desire to be seen as cool and weak gun laws.

Thomas’ resolution was put on the agenda and adopted unanimously.

“Young people in Philadelphia are still exposed to armed violence, and yet they are almost never involved in prevention talks,” said Asia Jones, coordinator of youth leaders and advocacy projects at CAIR-Philadelphia. The “Enough is Enough” steering committee gave students the opportunity to defend a problem they are passionate about and the opportunity to be heard. This has led to a survey of more than 1,300 students in the city who are also concerned and eager to see change. ”

In other news, Council member Brian O’Neill, R-10th District, has introduced a law extending the tax freeze amid an upcoming property valuation boost.

The Philadelphia Property Assessment Authority (OPA) has released data showing that the average property value has increased by 31% compared to 2019.

A member of the Special Assignment Board, David O, said he would ask the city controller’s office to conduct an inspection.

“I am writing a letter to the city controller,” O. said. “I ask her to study this process and how OPA came to its meanings. Methodology is one thing, but what really? What evidence? I want to see math. I want to look at documents that show what it is. Surprisingly, if we look at the growth rate, the poorest neighborhoods, the neighborhoods with the highest crime rates, have some of the highest value increases, over 50%. ”

O’Neill’s legislation will extend the 2022 tax freeze application for senior citizens until September 30, 2022. In addition, the eligible elders must be 65 years of age, live with a spouse of at least 65 or at least 50 years of age and be the widow of someone who was at least 65 years old when they died.

Single applicants must have an income of $ 33,500 or less, and married couples – $ 41,500 or less.

“This law will protect senior citizens from raising property taxes by allowing them to freeze taxes at their current rate before these unprecedented property valuations take effect,” O’Neill said.

City Council President Darrell Clark passed the legislation to the committee.

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