SOUTH CHICAGO — The South Chicago Peoples and Pastors Association, made up of seven South Side pastors, will host its third annual anti-violence march Saturday to raise awareness about violence in Chicago, organizers said.
The 10 a.m. march will start in the Bubbleland Laundromat parking lot, 9108 S. Commercial Ave., and end at the South Chicago Peoples' Park, 9100 S. Buffalo Ave.
A one-hour prayer service will then take place at the park, and Cook County Commissioner Stanley Moore and Ald. John Pope (10th) will be among the elected officials participating, said Angela Hurlock, executive director of the nonprofit Claretian Associates, who is organizing the event.
"The outpouring of violence in Chicago needs to stop, and people need to be aware of what is going on and what needs to be done moving forward to stop the violence, especially in the South Chicago area," Hurlock said. "The ministers' group [believes] in the resurrection of peace, power and purpose, and on the day before Easter, that is the message it wants to convey to the community."
Moore said the march and prayer service is needed not only in his district, but throughout Chicago.
"If we don't get ahead of all this violence taking place in the streets, we are going to find ourselves having a violent summer," Moore said. "I think it is important to have neighborhood marches and rallies because it gives residents a chance to hear from victims and their families and the aftermath of a violent incident."
Laurie Glenn, a spokeswoman for the ministers' group, added that despite a decrease in the number of homicides in the first quarter of this year, the number of shootings in Chicago has steadily risen the last four weeks, in part due to warm weather.
"Given the continued and escalating incidents of violence, Chicago communities need a renewed sense of hope and an opportunity to counter the threat of violence by taking action to create peace, trust and compassion," Glenn said.