The brakes of the No. 52 Kedzie bus groaned to a stop about 8:30 a.m., and the doors swooshed open.
Corey Givens hopped on and settled into the middle of the bus, holding his backpack as he looked out the window.
Givens was disappointed he wasn't heading to his job in a work van that day but instead had to catch the bus to go to the branch courthouse at Grand and Central avenues on Chicago's Northwest Side. He faced a hearing on a misdemeanor charge for peddling weed, the less serious of his two pending criminal cases.
Such are the two worlds Givens is straddling — honest work with a steady paycheck in contrast with quick cash, violence and court dates.
If you are an employer, you can hire young people at risk. If you are a community leader, you can help improve police-community relations. If you are a health care provider, you can support trauma-informed care to gun violence victims. If you are a funder, you can support any one of these efforts. Whatever you do, your voice matters when you speak up in support of policies that can make our neighborhoods safer. Reach out to learn more.