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The Center for Teen Empowerment Boston’s 30th Annual Youth Peace Conference

No better way to prepare for the summer than celebrating Peace Week with the youth of the commonwealth! TE Boston organized 7 days of events to address the community issues that lead to violence. The Peace Week event schedule can be found here. Angelica, Ruth, and several coalition leaders and community partners joined TE Boston to promote peace and continue the critical dialogue brought up in the youth’s film titled Senseless Smoke. The term “smoke” as utilized in this context stands for the slang term used to signify animosity amongst an individual and or group. And where there is senseless smoke there is violence shortly after. Teen Empowerment’s original film is based on the lived experience of Boston youth, created, directed, produced, cast, and original soundtrack by TE Boston youth and staff.

The coalition attended:

  • Talkback with the SENSELESS Smoke Cast

  • PEACE by PIECE: The impact on families of loved ones who caused community harm

    • Local families with loved ones involved in violence discuss the ripple effects of violence and how to address them. In partnership with We Are Better Together

  • More Action & Less Talk: Massachusetts Attorney General and Suffolk District Attorney Candidates Forum

    • Candidates for MA Attorney General and Suffolk District Attorney answered youth questions. Hosted by TE’s Opportunity Youth United Boston Community Action Team in partnership with Citizens for Juvenile Justice. The event was followed by the Boston Forward Commonwealth Mixer starting at brought by in partnership with Citizens for Juvenile Justice and the Mary J. Harris Foundation.

We are thankful for the hard work of TE Boston and all their amazing youth organizers for bringing us Peace Week.

The themes brought up in TE Boston’s Peace Week came at a critical time as we enter the summer months and new research emerges. According to the researchers from CDC, firearms became the leading cause of death for American children and teenagers in 2020. Between 2019 and 2020, firearm deaths for people aged 1-19 increased by a massive 30%. "This sad fact represents a major shift in risks for young people in the U.S.For over 60 years, car accidents were the leading cause of death for kids and teens. Car accidents are now number two, while drug overdoses are number three. This sad fact represents a major shift in risks for young people in the U.S." “Senseless Smoke” reminds us of this and forces viewers to come face to face with the issue that plagues our young people today. In order to move the needle on gun violence, we must allow those most impacted, living the realities to be centered on pushing what the agenda must look like.

Children have a right to be safe. They have a right to be safe at school, walking home from school, and playing outside after school. They have a right to safety in the Commonwealth.

Every parent has a right to have their child walk out their door without worrying about whether they will come home again.


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