BATON ROUGE, La (BRPROUD) – With just three months left in the year, East Baton Rouge is on pace to pass 2020’s homicide record of 136. As of Oct. 7, the homicide rate is at 125, according to EBR Coroner’s Office.
Elizabeth Robinson lost her son in 2018 to gun violence.
“They say, ‘oh, Miss Liz, you’re so strong,’ but they only don’t know I cry every day,” said Robinson.
Robinson is also the president of C.H.AN.G.E., a local nonprofit dedicated to supporting families who have lost a loved one to gun violence. She said it’s time for parents to start stepping in to do their part as well.
“Louis left behind three kids. I’m raising one of them, it’s two girls and a boy, and they miss their dad. We have to come together — mothers have to start putting their feet down, fathers need to start being a part of these kids’ lives. We just have to educate our kids and let them know that that’s not the answer to these problems,” said Robinson.
In the last 23 days, eight people have been murdered. President of the NAACP Eugene Collins said how economics and financial opportunity play a role in the outcomes of violent crimes has to be acknowledged.
“Making sure that financial opportunities exist, after school programming exists, things that take kids off the streets, that those things exist,” said Collins.
Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome recently announced a proposal to use funds from the American Rescue Plan for community violence intervention. Collins agrees this is a step in the right direction but he’s also calling on the community.
“This can’t all be placed on law enforcement, some of this has to be a certain level of personal responsibilities within our communities,” said Collins.
C.H.A.N.G.E also works to rebuild communities through violence interruption, youth outreach, and community canvassing. To help C.H.A.N.G.E. with their initiative efforts visit changebr.org.