On Monday, December 30, 2015 Mayor Ernest D. Davis will join with the New York Peace Coalition to bring light to violence and violent acts that reduce the quality of life for residents in the city and the world. “Peace December is a movement that started in New York City and is gaining momentum in countries across the world,” said Mayor Ernest D. Davis. ‘With so much violence occurring over the past year in nations across the globe, we will also pay our respects to victims of countries suffering loss of life and property.”
Peace December is an initiative that started as an interfaith response to the disturbing high levels of violence in New York, and later became worldwide. With the escalation of violent acts across the globe and most recent acts of violence in France and Mali, as well as the global alert on terror, the Peace December Lighting will shed light on the importance of finding peaceful resolutions to conflicts which threaten individuals in countries worldwide.
The ceremony will include a Peace Lighting for victims of attacks and prayer for an end to the violence so the peaceful means to resolve conflicts can be found. Candles for the 193 UN participating countries will be lit as a symbol of community support. An additional component of the program will include recognition of civil rights pioneers Claudette Colvin and Rosa Parks.
Claudette Colvin, at the age of 15, was the first person arrested for resisting bus segregation. Shortly after being arrested the young teen became pregnant and was considered not to be suitable to be the symbol for civil rights. Some nine months after her arrest Rosa Parks became the face of the civil rights movement. Colvin moved to New York in 1958 and became employed as a nurse’s aide. She retired in 2004 and currently resides in the Bronx.
Peace December was organized in 2010 by the New York Peace Coalition, a coalition of representatives from houses of worship, elected officials, schools, civil society, community and business leaders who came together for a historic installation at the offices of the Bronx Borough President. The initiative was endorsed, supported and welcomed by all the elected officials including Governor David Paterson, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Senator Ruth-Hassel Thompson. Today Peace December has international chapters and develops programming aimed at reducing violence within communities. Members are a diverse team of volunteers who are committed to providing the highest level of service to those in need who strive for peaceful coexistence of all people.
For additional information contact Shari Harris, Special Assistant to the Mayor at 914-665-2572.