Durham peace advocates to ring in new year with vigils
DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Advocates for peace in Durham will begin 2017 with nearly a dozen vigils against violence in the city.
The effort comes after an increase in killings in 2016. Two deadly shootings on Christmas Eve brought the year’s total number of homicides to 43. Investigators said that is Durham’s highest number since 1980. 2015’s total of 42 was nearly twice as many as in 2014.
The Durham County Department of Public Health recently partnered with some community activists to launch Bull City United. The violence reduction initiative is based on a program started in 2000 in one of Chicago’s more violent communities.
Bull City United will host eight vigils during the first seven days of 2017. The group is calling it a Week of Peace, and the events will take place across the city and will include some of Durham’s public housing communities, such as McDougald Terrace, Oxford Manor, and