On Sept. 25, Saturday afternoon Harlem Mothers S.AV.E. (Stop Another Violent End) hosted its 6th annual anti-violence forum in front of their office at 306 W.128th St. Sept. 25 was designated “National Day of Remembrance for Murder Victims,” by the U.S. Congress in 2007. This event was primarily meant to publicly denounce violence against women, and raise awareness about it, being that it occurred just three doors away from where 31-year-old pregnant mother Shanice Young was brutally murdered two weeks earlier, allegedly by her ex-boyfriend.
Dozens of associates, friends and relatives of victims advocating against domestic violence attended the outdoor event, many displaying photos of loved ones who were casualties. Several activists, city officials and law-enforcement agents also participated.
“Today’s a day that we’re gonna let our loved ones know that they’re not forgotten,” Harlem Mothers S.A.V.E. co-founder Jackie Rowe-Adams, opened with. She also mentioned several other similar organizations which were present.
Harlem Mother’s S.A.V.E.’s chairperson, Rev. Ronald Sullivan, said, “This organization was born out of pain, but it’s here to provide opportunities and a lot of healing. We want to move from pain, to healing.”
NYPD’s 32nd precinct Chief Rodney Harrison offered condolences to Shanice’s father, Thurman Young, who was present, before saying: “No one should have to bury their child.”
Representatives from Harlem’s Boyer Lodge No. 1 made a financial donation, prior to Mrs. Rowe-Adams acknowledging that “If anyone can help us keep illegal guns out of our children’s hands, the lodge can do it.”
Rev. Sullivan then noted: “One of the true epidemics in our community is the abuse of our women.”
Then W.A.R.M. (We All Really Matter) founder, Stephanie McGraw spoke: “We have to denounce this type of violence. We are survivors of domestic violence, so we have a unique approach to it. We have to talk about it. There’s a lot of work to do.”
She noted that October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and acknowledged their 12th annual event taken place in Harlem Oct. 9th at Bradhurst & 153-155th Sts, and another one in East Harlem Oct. 23rd.
“I am a survivor of domestic violence, and if you do not get out now, it’s gonna come back,” she recalled once advising a client. “Don’t let her end be your end, cuz it could’ve been me. That woman, we took her to the shelter. Use your life as a lesson to help someone else.”
Vanessa Jones, ambassador from Astoria, Queens, said, “We make sure to take care of the misunderstandings and miscommunication between the police and the communities we serve.”
Several parents of murdered victims read off approximately 300 names, including those of their own children. Some were victims of domestic violence, police terrorism or street violence.
That following Sunday morning, the 21st Annual Gladys Ricart & Victims of Domestic Violence Memorial Walk/Brides’ March left from the Holyrood Episcopal Church, 715 W.179th St., into the Bronx, then concluded at 106th St. and Lexington Ave. in East Harlem.
On Oct. 2, a ‘Unity in the Community’ walk from Washington Heights into Harlem occurs.
For more information check 212-234-0112, https://harlemmotherssave.org/