All I want for the New Year is for us to put resentment behind us. I hold a lot of anger towards people within my community, school and neighborhood and I would like to try and let go of some of it. That is my holiday wish.
The bilingual forum drew nearly 70 people and was a joint effort from BHC Merced’s Neighborhood Action Team, Health Equity Project and the Merced Organizing Project.
Organizers invited all the candidates running for Merced City Council Districts 1, 3 and 5 – the only three district seats up for grabs this election year.
Merced County just counted its ninth homicide of 2015 a few days ago. The previous year had the most homicides on record in the county at 31. Many of the Merced County victims have been young people of color, like the young man shot and killed in Winton earlier this week and a Merced teen who was shot and killed in the parking lot of Tenaya Middle School back in February. Much of the media coverage around the violence has focused on law enforcement, gang activity and property values. We’ced youth reporters asked our community members a different question: How has violence affected your life?
In late 2014, the City of Merced received an $828,775 grant from the State of California’s Housing and Community Development Department to improve and renovate Stephen Leonard Park. The park, which occupies a square block deep in South Merced, has seen better days. The basketball court is riddled with cracks and the pool has been empty for years. Renovation plans include installing a skate park and replacing the pool with a splash pad, as well as adding security cameras.
We’Ced reporters spent a chilly Saturday afternoon talking to visitors at Stephen Leonard Park about the new plans, and their memories of the place.