OKTIBBEHA COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI.) – A group in Oktibbeha County is on a mission to stop crime in its city.
In light of the recent shooting at McKee Park in Starkville this week, the Oktibbeha County NAACP said it’s time to work together to help young people find the path to honesty, respect, and crime-free behavior.
The group is hosting a community meeting to talk about ways to combat the issue.
You can’t see the change without action.
The Oktibbeha County NAACP Chapter is taking the first steps to stop the act of violence in communities and guide people in the right direction.
“As NAACP we will take the lead on this,” said Oktibbeha County NAACP President Yulanda Haddix.
Over the last month, there have been a few acts of violence in the city of Starkville.
And Yulanda Haddix said she’s been too silent.
“It’s our young adults. It begins with some type of conflict, disagreement, and then there’s a weapon pulled,” said Haddix.
Haddix said it’s time to have an open discussion about ways to create harmony in the community.
“Our concern is how are we gonna turn that negative behavior into something very positive,” said Haddix.
And it’s going to take more than just a conversation.
Haddix said there needs to be guidance programs to steer challenged youth in the right direction.
“We need to have more conflict-resolution programs and behavior-modification programs. We need individuals can come out and say ‘Hey I’m frustrated how can I handle this problem.’ We need more resources for our young adults,” said Haddix.
She believes the reason people don’t voice their frustration is due to a divide in the community. Between the have’s and the have-nots.
“The have-nots feel like they’re not valued and so they go out and they have these behaviors,” said Haddix.
For Haddix, the first step to erasing the divide begins at home.
“It takes a village to raise a child, and it actually takes that village. If you see something, say something, and then do something,” said Haddix.
She urges everyone to stop letting acts of violence set a tone for the community.
“We are here to support whatever you see or if you are out and if you want to tell and too afraid or there’s a problem over here, call the NAACP,” says Haddix.
The meeting will take place Thursday at the Court House on Main Street in Starkville. The meeting will begin at 6 p.m.