Jersey City Vigil and Rally to be Held Tonight in Response to Increase in Gun Violence

Photo courtesy Jersey Stands Facebook page

A candlelight vigil and rally will be held tonight, April 20 at 6:30 pm on the corner of Van Nostrand & Ocean Avenues. This is a community action in response to the recent increase in gun violence in Jersey City. The rally is spurred by two recent shootings, on Sunday, April 16 Jimmy Gregory, 19, was shot and killed and 10 year old Rayana Phillips was shot while sitting in a car on Van Nostrand and Ocean Avenues.

A media alert sent out by Pamela Johnson, Executive Director of the Jersey City Anti-Violence Coalition Movement stated, “The Jersey City community will rally around victims of violence, support families affected, reflect on how it affects our community and leave with an action plan. We have seen how violence plagues our community and leaves destruction in its path. We have seen an increase in violence and it must be addressed by every neighborhood in Jersey City. Children are being shot, young men and women are being gunned down and murdered and it is unacceptable to do nothing. We must stand together and let no Ward separate us. This is a city issue and we have to collectively support one another. Families need our help and our city needs change.”

Various community leaders have banded together to hold the vigil and will speak tonight. Organizations hosting the rally include the Jersey City Anti-Violence Coalition Movement, Bayside Park Neighborhood Association and Jersey City Stands.

Some of the confirmed speakers for tonight’s vigil include:
Rabbi Debra Hachen: Temple Beth-El
Ahmed Shadeed: President, American Muslim Association
Pamela Johnson: Executive Director, Jersey City Anti-Violence Coalition Movement
Amy Albert, Esq.: Haven Adolescent Community Respite Center
Christopher Perez: Bayside Park Neighborhood Association
Hessie Williams: A Mothers Pain
Councilman Chris Gadsden: Ward B
Michael Billy: Community Leader and Founder, Jersey City Stands

The Candlelight Vigil and Rally will be held tonight, April 20 at 6:30 pm on the corner of Van Nostrand Ocean Avenues. For more information and updates, visit the event facebook page.

Catherine Hecht

is the owner of Harmony Media, NJ, the publisher of Jersey City Independent and blogs about urban gardening at dig a path. She’s lived in Jersey City since 1999 and resides in the Heights section with her wife Beth Achenbach, they were the first couple to file as legal domestic partners in Jersey City. Cat has over 10 years experience in communications, marketing and publishing, she’s studied anthropology, art history, woman & gender studies, botany, ethnobotany, and herbology and she is a graduate of the Rising Tide Capital Community Business Academy. She is also is a community activist, registered voter, gay rights activist, art lover, gardener, environmentalist, and an animal advocate.