From Sept. 3-4, the Brick City Peace Collective in conjunction with the Office of Mayor Ras Barak held the 10th Annual 24 Hours of Peace in Newark, NJ. Highlighted by hip hop stars KRS1 & Jadakiss, hundreds of people throughout the state of New Jersey came together for a night of unity. College Basketball coach and youth mentor, Damel Ling of Jersey City, stated “It was a fun night and safe night with great performers that connected multiple generations.”
In 2015, the City of Newark experienced over 3,200 violent crimes. However, over the last six years those numbers have decreased. There were less than 1,500 violent crimes in 2020 and not one Newark police officer fired a round in the line of duty during this time. Per the city’s public safety website, almost 500 guns were taken off the street and 270 have been recovered to date in 2021.
Lakeesha Eure, the director of the Mayor’s Office of Violence Prevention and Trauma Recovery, said the event, “Takes a holistic approach to peace through individual wellness. Our goal is to educate the community on the true meaning of peace. Peace stands for Proper Education Always Corrects Errors. This is our guiding principle during not only Peace Week, but every day. We want our residents to always know that peace is a choice and a lifestyle.”
Artists such as Freeway and Beanie Sigel got the crowd going with their hits “Roc the Mic” and “What We Do.” Fresh off his stellar performance on Verzuz, Jadakiss electrified the crowd with a melody of his greatest hits and freestyles. The grand finale of the night was hip hop icon KRS1. He not only provided a memorable hip hop performance, he also reminded the audience of the importance of stopping the violence.