SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) – A vigil was held outside the State Capitol Wednesday, commemorating victims of crime as part of a rally organized by a network of surviving loved ones of those lost to violence.
The group is demanding California lawmakers to boost resources for crime victims and invest in local groups outside of law enforcement to help prevent crime.
“I’m tired of over-relying on policing and the criminal justice system to keep us safe, that is lazy and disingenuous,” said the executive director of Californians for Safety and Justice, Tinisch Hollins. “We’re here to make sure the state and decision-makers in every city know that we are no longer carrying the burden of your failure while we fight to live and survive.”
The rally comes as recent polling shows the majority of California voters are concerned about crime in this state. Crime will be a focal point in the upcoming election, including the state attorney general’s race, where Gov. Gavin Newsom’s appointee Rob Bonta will try to keep his seat.
Bonta at Wednesday’s event said his office is focused on prioritizing community-based approaches to disrupt cycles of violence and crime.
“It’s going to take all of us,” Bonta said. “Community-led intervention and rehabilitation is a vital part of public safety, that’s something we’ve known and something that has become painfully more obvious.”
The attorney general was joined by a few other lawmakers pledging to provide change and resources.
State Senator Nancy Skinner, D–Oakland, announced a bill that would boost compensation and resources for crime victims, and also expand access to those falsely accused of a crime.
Every single crime victim deserves and needs support,” Skinner said.
The group says the time is now for state lawmakers to invest in community groups that help prevent crime.
“Crime, murder is on the rise we are in crisis. We have been at table after table, after table and it’s no more sitting down,” said Stephanie Hatten, whose son killed by police. “We know what’s needed because we are in the community, on the ground, hearing from those who are severely impacted.”