LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — One year of ONE Lexington’s work is now outlined in a 28-page strategic mission statement. But even its director knows it’s not worth the paper it’s printed on.
“This is a document. That’s all it is. A piece of paper with words on it. It does not mean anything until we the community put it into action,” said Devine Carama.
Carama is talking about getting into the communities around Lexington where a high crime rate is prevalent and weeding out the issues at the grade school level before a gun starts to look like a good option.
“If we don’t, then we’ll be back here in three years, five years, ten years if we don’t switch the focus to some of the root causes for violence that we’re seeing,” Carama stated.
He’s speaking, essentially about the systemic issues that lead to violence such as economic disparity, food insecurity, and overall problems inside the home.
While only 12 months old, ONE Lexington has already made some significant progress.
“There is a 50 percent drop in homicides involving people in this age -13-29 – group when compared to last year,” said Mayor Linda Gorton.
So while the city’s homicide rate is now at a record-setting level for a single year, there is progress being made by ONE Lexington in other areas.
“We are encouraged. But there’s still a long way to go,” Carama said.
He went on to thank the organizations who’ve gone all in since the beginning to get involved with helping reach the at-risk youth in the community.