Mayor Luke Ravenstahl and Chief Nathan Harper hosted an Interfaith Peace Breakfast this morning to discuss how the City and local religious leaders can work together to reduce criminal activity in the community.
More than 50 members of the faith-based community gathered at Reizenstein Middle School from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for the breakfast, one of the Mayor's eight initiatives launched in response to the recent wave of violence plaguing the City.
"The local place of worship and its congregation is the soul of the community," said Mayor Ravenstahl. "There is a lot of good work being done out there by our religious leaders and City officials, but we need to speak with a unified voice and avoid duplicative work. The goal of this meeting is to build new and strengthen existing relationships and to pull everyone in under one umbrella."
In addition to the Mayor and Police Chief, Councilwoman Tonya Payne addressed the group on the importance of building relationships between the City and faith-based community. Assistant Chief Maurita Bryant, from the Police Bureaus Investigations Branch, introduced powerpoint presentations on crime statistics by Detective Jill Rustin from the Firearms Tracking Unit, and Deputy Medical Examiner Darlene Craig, respectively.
The Mayor's Economic Development Coordinator, Ed Gainey, laid out a plan for 52 Weeks of Peace, and Police Clerk Specialist Sharon Grace, coordinator for Adopt-A-Block, explained the program. A question and answer period followed closing remarks.
Said the Mayor, "To be successful in this battle, we must form a unified front. We will not let crime control our communities."
Saturday, June 16, 2007
Office of Mayor Luke Ravenstahl
512 City County Building | 414 Grant Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15219
telephone: 412-255-2626 | facsimile: 412-255-2687