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Published on Apr 4, 2014
The urban violence symposium focuses on the causes and effects of urban violence in the nation with a particular focus on the cities of Camden and Philadelphia. There are places in America where the number of prisons built is determined by the number of Latino and African children that are born. The life trajectory for these young people is best described as the "cradle to prison pipeline". The term has emerged recently to describe the overwhelming odds stacked against kids born into certain neighborhoods. Children born into economically depressed areas with high levels of poverty face many, many challenges not faced by students in more affluent regions of our cities. The symposium features a nationally recognized local intervention called Cradle to Grave that uses service-learning to educate youth about the impact urban violence has on its victims and their families. Striving to advance knowledge regarding research, policy, and practical efforts to reduce crime in America's most violent cities, the symposium offers a discussion based format for dissecting the intricacies of urban violence. In Marian Wright Edelman's words, keynote speaker of the event, "If we don't end mass incarceration, if we don't give our children an alternative path to the future, we are going to have a new American apartheid and undo all the struggles of our forefathers."