Kinsey hosts Lt. Gov. Davis and local organizations for roundtable discussion on gun violence

PHILADELPHIA, July 13 – Today, state Rep. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila., hosted a roundtable discussion on gun violence with Lt. Gov. Austin Davis at Grace Baptist Church of Germantown.

Kinsey and Davis were joined by local organizations that provide support and services for victims of gun violence, including Cease Fire, Every Murder is Real, Men Who Care of Germantown, 7G’s, New Journey and Mothers in Charge.

Other Philadelphia Delegation members and local officials who participated in the roundtable included state Reps. Darisha Parker, Morgan Cephas, Anthony Bellmon, and Ben Waxman; City Councilmembers Cindy Bass and Anthony Phillips; staff from state Sen. Art Haywood's office and state Rep. Chris Rabb's office; Sheriff Rochelle Bilal; School District of Philadelphia Chief Safety Officer Kevin Bethel; 35th District Police Captain Myesha Massey; police officers from the 14th District; and Adara Coombs for the city of Philadelphia managing director's office.

Today’s roundtable was part of Davis’s statewide safer communities tour, highlighting local efforts -- funded by the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency -- that are working to address gun violence and make Pennsylvania’s communities safer.

“Governor Shapiro and I believe that government can and should be a force for good in our lives, that we can do big things – if we work together,” Davis said. “As public servants, we must do more to address the epidemic of gun violence. Our children are counting on us to get this done.”

Gun violence has been a major issue in Philadelphia with more than 500 homicides in 2021 and 2022 and more than 900 people who have been shot so far in 2023.

Kinsey emphasized the importance of elected officials hearing from people who are working daily to address this rampant gun violence.

“I’ve said for a while now that the best way to combat gun violence in our communities is with an all-hands-on-deck approach,” Kinsey said. “The organizations who joined us are on the front lines every day in our communities combatting this issue. It was important for them to relay what they see to the lieutenant governor and myself so we can continue to affectively address this epidemic at the state level.”   

Kinsey has been a strong advocate for gun violence prevention in northwest Philadelphia. In 2022, he started a collaborative initiative called “Third Thursday” where he joins local community advocates, students, nonprofit organizations, elected officials, clergy, the PA State Police, the 14th and 35th Police Districts, 14th and 35th Police District Chaplains, Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office, LaSalle University, the city and community members on the third Thursday of every month throughout the summer and early fall, going to a neighborhood in Philadelphia affected by gun violence and sharing information and resources to assist people and families that have been impacted.