Calling it an historic first, Pittsburgh Councilman Rev. Ricky Burgess joined fellow Councilman Danny Lavelle, County Councilman Dewitt Walton, and state Reps. Ed Gainey and Jake Wheatley in announcing that they will hold a series of community meetings that will yield an agenda for rebuilding poor Black city neighborhoods—and that they will push with policy changes at the city, county and state government levels.
“If there is no justice, there is no peace. If there is no peace, there can be no justice,” Burgess said. “The shooting of citizens by police, the shooting of police by citizens, the shooting of citizens by citizens—these require justice. We are here together, for the first time, to announce a peace and justice policy agenda, and that we will pursue its creation and implementation.”
Gainey said part of the agenda will be about building healthier police-community relations.
“It’s about giving communities a way for residents to say how things can be done better,” he said. “People should feel safe in their own neighborhoods.”