Thursday, March 22, 2012

Shooting Response Tomorrow 3/23 at 6 PM on the corner of Schenectady Avenue and Prospect Place

Dear Community,

We are saddened to inform you that on Wednesday evening, two teenagers from our neighborhood were shot outside of St. John's park. An 18-year-old boy was fatally wounded, and a 15-year-old boy was injured. Please come together with us to respond to this tragedy and to ask our community to put down the guns.

We will gather to respond 6 PM on Friday, March 23rd at the corner of Schenectady Avenue and Prospect Place. Please be prompt.

We respond to every shooting that occurs in the S.O.S. target area to ensure that these tragedies do not pass unremarked as though they are normal and acceptable. We create a safe space on our streets, at the site of the shooting, where neighborhood residents can raise their voices in protest.
Stop Shooting. Start Living.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Shooting Response March 21st, 6 PM at the corner of St. Johns and Kingston Ave

Neighbors, Community Members and Friends,

There was a shooting at the corner of St. Johns and Kingston Ave on Monday night, March 19th, just a few doors down from our home at the Crown Heights Community Mediation Center. Please join us at 6 PM tomorrow, March 21st, at the corner of St Johns and Kingston Ave to respond to this incident.

We respond to every shooting that occurs in the S.O.S. target area to ensure that these tragedies do not pass unremarked as though they are normal and acceptable. We create a safe space on our streets, at the site of the shooting, where neighborhood residents can raise their voices in protest.

Please join us.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Meet Marlon Peterson, YO S.O.S. Program Coordinator























Columbia Journalism student Suvro Banerji has put together a photo essay about YO S.O.S. Program Coordinator Marlon Peterson. Marlon grew up in Crown Heights, attending P.S. 148, where he graduated as valedictorian and played the steel drum in the renowned Pan Sonatas Steel Orchestra.

As Marlon says:

"Crown Heights is my home. From the hallways of P.S. 138 on Prospect Place and Nostrand Avenue to Brower Park to Sonatas Steel Orchestra on Sterling and Troy to the West Indian Day Parade on Eastern Parkway, Crown Heights is my home. I am a true product of this neighborhood. I have received academic accolades in one vein and handcuffs in the other. I have seen Crown Heights grow from the crack-filled, crime-riddled days of the 1980’s to the gentrifying neighborhood it is becoming. Throughout it all, however, there has remained one constant; crime. As someone that has been on both sides of the crime spectrum as a youth, I have experienced the pain both as the victim and perpetrator of how violence feels. I have experienced the indifference and apathy that many of us feel towards violence in our community. Furthermore, as someone that has spent many years working with young people in Brooklyn, I know of their ability to influence our neighborhood for the good and the bad."

Before he was the YO S.O.S. program coordinator, Marlon worked as a Violence Interrupter with the S.O.S. program. Marlon was recently honored at the graduation ceremony of Center for Community Alternatives, where he addressed the graduating group. In addition to acting as program coordinator for YO S.O.S., Marlon is a student at New York University. We're not sure how he does it all.

To learn more about Marlon and the YO S.O.S. program, please watch Interrupting Violence in Crown Heights by Suvro Banerji and Jackie Mader from NYC in Focus, visit the YO S.O.S. blog, like them on facebook, and follow them on twitter.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Pick up a poster for your window!


We hope you’ve seen the S.O.S. posters all around the neighborhood. We want to keep the issue of gun violence in people’s minds when they are shopping for their groceries, on their way to school, sitting in church, and doing their laundry.


One resident stopped by the office last week and asked for some posters for the window in his apartment. He said, “I feel so proud whenever I see the S.O.S. team. I want to do my part.”  He chose a poster that read “Don’t Let 6X9 or 6 feet under be your only options.”  


We invite you to come by our office to pick up a poster. By putting these posters in your window, you make the statement that gun violence is unacceptable and that there is wide support to get people to put their guns down. The posters also start conversations, an important part of the process of making the change we want here in Crown Heights. Together, we are working for the day when these posters are a relic from a sad time in our history.




Here are some more photos of posters:





Come by, pick up a poster, and send us a picture of you and your sign!