By Ana Medina, WTVQ
EXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) — It’s a meeting that’s aims to gather the community at Central Bank Center, with three main topics at the forefront: transportation for mental health care, affordable housing and gun violence.
Nehemiah Action, hosted by B.U.I.L.D which stands for building a united interfaith Lexington through direct action, held the event at Central Bank Center on Monday night.
“I wanna be able to sit on my front porch. I wanna be able to walk downtown. I live, you know, just a couple of blocks from Carsons. I wanna be able to walk down to Thursday Night Live, but I don’t feel safe,” said Cheryl Birch, a team member with B.U.I.L.D.
“We started this campaign in 2014 each year, it’s gone up even though the official says, you know, that there has been a decline, but we don’t know, this is just the, the fourth month of the year. So we don’t know what this year is going,” she adds.
Belinda Snead, from B.U.I.L.D’s executive board, also saying, “people don’t feel safe, they’re, they’re afraid to sit out on their front porches just to enjoy the weather. They don’t want to take their kids to the park and, you know, and leave them there to enjoy, to enjoy time with the park with their friends because of the scattered violence, the random violence and innocent victims, uh, that result from, from the gun violence.”
Organizers say it’s getting the event together is a lengthy process that started last fall.
“It starts in the fall with a listening process where we hear from our members, our 26 congregations about the issues that they’re facing in the community. We vote in the fall on the top three issues and then we begin researching to find the best proven solutions to resolve those issues,” added Birch.
The purpose of the meeting is to present results from data collected from the community, present potential solutions and urge action from leaders.
“There’s two sources of power and there’s money and people and if they, you know, can put it in their schedule, please come out and as far as about to support us, everyone is welcome. Even though it’s a 26 congregation, everyone is welcome,” says Birch.