Moving Everyday Gun Violence Into View

Mayor Michael Nutter talks about Cities United and preventing gun violence in cities across the United States through cross-sector partnerships.

Second-term Mayor of Philadelphia Michael Nutter is on a mission to get people talking about and actively engaged in preventing everyday gun violence that doesn't make the headlines. In 2011, Mayor Nutter and New Orleans Mayor Landrieu founded Cities United, a collaborative effort among mayors, foundations, nonprofits, federal agencies, and individuals to interrupt the cycle of violence across the United States, specifically among urban African-American males.

Rachael Chong: Share with us what Cities United is and why you believe it's such an important cause.

Mayor Nutter: Cities United is a collaborative effort among a variety of partners, including probably 50 mayors, the Casey Family Programs, the Knight Foundation, the Open Society Foundations, National League of Cities, the US Conference of Mayors, and others. We all partner together and focus on the issue of violence in the African-American community, its disproportionately negative impact on black males, and the best practices that we can utilize to get at the root causes of violence -- whether it's poverty, illiteracy, health issues, lack of job opportunity, easy access to weapons, inability to manage anger, or conflict resolution.

Black men are killed at disproportionately high rates, and overwhelmingly, the violence is black on black. Shootings, homicides, and violent crime in general are intra-racial. It rips out the heart and soul of a community. Seventy-five percent of the folks who are murdered in Philadelphia are black men and 80 percent of the people we arrest for homicide in Philadelphia are black men, so there are two sets of people and family members that are negatively affected: the victims and the perpetrators.