Mayor Rogero, local leaders discuss reducing violence in Knoxville

KNOXVILLE (WATE) – Local leaders and Mayor Madeline Rogero met Friday to take a look at how to reduce violence in Knoxville.

The Save our Sons Summit met at the Knoxville Civic Coliseum on Friday to address social issues in Knoxville’s African-American community, with the goal of reducing violence.

Kwabena Miller, a local activist and speaker at the Summit says the main problem is lack of jobs and education.

“We need to come together and make the good life more attractive,” says Miller.

Save our Sons is a continuation of the Cities United and My Brother’s Keeper initiatives aimed at creating opportunity and reducing violence-related death of young men and boys of color.

“When we look at murders and violent crimes in Knoxville, we average at about 21 murders a year. When we looked at those numbers, 90% of the crimes were committed by black males on black males,” explained Knoxville police chief David Rausch.

Mayor Rogero says the Summit helped leaders identify problems areas.

“In our educational statistics, the category of Black, Latino, and Native American males  typically scored much less. The failure rates are higher. We know there’s something we can do and we learned the bad news today,” said Mayor Rogero.

With the information pooled at the summit, the mayor says they’ll be looking at a community action plan, taking a look at solutions going into the future.

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