Shootings prompt Peace Walk set for Thursday

Rev. Kevin Jones at Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church

A Peace in the Streets walk through West Palm Beach’s Historic Northwest is scheduled for Thursday, at 6 p.m., in response to a recent rash of shootings.

The peace walk will step off from Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church, 801 8th St.

The march, organized with the help of Rev. Kevin Jones, is one of at least 15 that have taken place since the summer of 2015.

A peace walk in June 2016

“We¬†stop and engage¬†folks, especially if they’re outside the homes or on the streets, talk to them, promoting peace, telling them why we’re there, hearing their ideas,” City Commissioner Cory Neering said Tuesday.

“The folks we’ve spoken to say, ‘We work, we take care of our kids, and we just want a community of faith,'” he said. “They see it as young men making poor decisions and getting into beefs with each other. They don’t see this as random. Neither do I. It’s very targeted. I’ve seen and heard where some of this stuff has been from Facebook posts and they get into it and they take it out on each other in the street.

“These folks are looking for answers and part of these peace walks is to show them that we care.”

The group has organized walks in the Coleman Park and Pleasant City neighborhoods, too, but decided to do this one in the Historic Northwest because of a recent increase in shootings, some of them fatal.

After the initial spree of shootings in 2015 eased off, the walks stopped. But now the group has decided “to keep this on the calendar, keep it moving,” Neering said.

People from throughout West Palm Beach and from all walks of life participate, he said. “It transcends race. We have whites, blacks, young, old, residents, residents from other parts of the city, who are all promoting peace.”

City Commissioner Cory Neering



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