(KRON) — When mass shootings happen, they raise the question: How do we prevent these things from happening again?
According to two organizations, the best way to prevent these types of crimes is by reaching out to individuals before they become involved in any sort of violence, specifically Oakland’s youth.
“Avoidable, regrettable, unnecessary. We need to fix it.” That was Sedrick Tydus’ reaction when he heard about the mass shooting in Oakland on Wednesday.
Tydus mentors Black boys in middle and high school with the ‘OK Program of Oakland‘. The program aims to prevent young children from getting involved in crimes such as gun violence.
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“For us to start working with our young people and try to show them a way instead of letting the streets show them a way of living,” said Glen Upshaw Sr.
Upshaw Sr. is a violence interrupter with ‘Youth ALIVE!’. He believes part of the problem is the prevalence of guns, something he calls an epidemic.
“I feel like when you start having 12 to 13-year-olds with guns it’s a problem. Something’s wrong. It’s not just the community or the household, something is wrong with the system that these guns are being available to our youth,” said Upshaw Sr.
He said when an incident like the one near the Bay Area Technology School happens, all “Youth Alive!” resources are moved to preventing further related incidents.
“We try to find out who was the shooter, who was the victim and we try to get to folks of influence to try and get them not to retaliate,” said Upshaw Sr.
Sedrick Tydus and Glen Upshaw Sr. both said they care about the City of Oakland and the people who live in it, and they are going to continue to fight to make it a safer place.