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Anti-gun march from Brooklyn to Manhattan to focus on violence in communities of color

Marchers are walking over the Brooklyn Bridge to Foley Square today.

New York city students with the youth-led organization

New York city students with the youth-led organization Youth Over Guns plan to march across the Brooklyn Bridge to protest gun violence and demand gun control from Congress on Saturday. Photo Credit: Craig Ruttle

A march against gun violence organized by the city’s students is going beyond addressing school shootings.

Planned for Saturday and organized by a community organization called Youth Over Guns, the event is addressing gun violence in communities of color, which organizer Ramon Contreras said was overlooked in the aftermath of the Parkland, Florida school shooting.

Contreras, a NYC public schools student, founded Youth Over Guns after the national school walkout on March 14, when students across the country stepped out of classes for 17 minutes to honor the 17 victims of the Parkland tragedy. He, however, was unimpressed with the attention given to students of color.

“We saw that a lot of students of color were walking out that day but weren’t getting the press coverage that was given to students of predominantly white schools,” he said via telephone Wednesday, offering it as the reason for the creation of Youth Over Guns.

Now, the youth-led organization has partnered with established anti-gun violence institutions, such as Everytown for Gun Safety, Guns Down Life Up, March for Our Lives NYC, to name a few, to denounce gun violence and demand gun control.

While the marchers are addressing the victims of school shootings across the country, they will also decry gun violence that occurs beyond school campuses — in parks and in the streets of black and brown communities, according to a spokeswoman from Everytown for Gun Safety.

The event was slated to begin with musical performances at the Korean War Veterans Memorial in Brooklyn at noon. Following that, the protesters are marching across the Brooklyn Bridge to Foley Square in Manhattan, where a rally with student speakers will be conducted at 2 p.m.

The event, which coincides with National Gun Violence Awareness Day, is expected to be attended by at least hundreds.

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