Two years after it was first introduced, the “Cease Fire” gun violence reduction initiative led by the Salisbury-Rowan Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Salisbury Police Department, will continue in 2021 with a slightly different look. The “Salisbury Cease Fire” program will be held throughout the year in a continuous effort to reduce increasing gun violence in the community.
Introduced in 2019, the “Summer Cease Fire” was a local initiative to encourage Salisbury youth, and in some cases adults, to stop gun-related assault during the summer months. The initiative uses data to address gun violence/crime in specific areas, in combination with community stakeholders who serve as de-escalators in the midst of potentially violent situations between related groups in the summer.
The Salisbury Cease Fire program will continue to use de-escalators, but will continue year-round. An additional plus is the assistance of two dedicated SPD crime analysts who are housed in the new Rowan Regional Crime Information Center (RRCIC). The analysts benefit the Cease Fire program by providing real time/up-to-date data on violent crime hot spots within the city limits. De-escalators will be on call day and night.
“The community has seen much success with the Cease Fire initiative reducing our violent crime issues,” said Salisbury Police Chief Jerry Stokes. “Our continuing partnership with NAACP has been a boon to both the Salisbury Police Department’s community engagement efforts and ability to effectively reduce crime in neighborhoods. We are pleased that we are able to continue on this journey of working together to reduce crime and build lasting relationships.”
“The Salisbury-Rowan NAACP is proud to partner with the Salisbury Police Department and other city groups to make Cease Fire a year-round program,” said Salisbury-Rowan NAACP President Gemale Black. “While working to prevent crime in our City, we encourage everyone to join in and increase volunteer participation so together we can decrease gun violence. The Salisbury-Rowan NAACP will continue to fight for equality for all and hold law enforcement agencies accountable. In addition, we as residents must also hold each person in our neighborhood accountable by working to prevent and report incidents, and contacting de-escalators to assist with conflicts. When we mobilize and work together, we can ensure that gun violence in our community will be at an all-time low.”
The Salisbury Cease Fire initiative is patterned after a model of policing which identifies violence as a public health issue an develops data-driven strategies to combat the issue.
Interested residents can sign-up to be a de-escalator by visiting: www.salisburync.gov/ceasefire. Also for an opportunity to walk in the community discussing Salisbury Cease Fire with Salisbury Police and Salisbury-Rowan NAACP members, register to receive canvassing notification here: https://bit.ly/3hmhpkk.
For more information on the Salisbury Cease Fire program, contact the Salisbury-Rowan NAACP at (980) 234-9843 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.