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Second Annual Antiviolence Conference in Philadelphia Draws Hundreds

By Kim Glovas

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- A 2½-day conference got underway this morning in center city Philadelphia, with the aim of addressing and preventing street violence.

The second annual conference, with nearly 200 attendees and sponsored by the Philadelphia group "Mothers In Charge," is titled "Law and Order or Vigilante Justice."

Dorothy Johnson-Speight, the group's founder and executive director, says this is a discussion with police, community groups, victims, and victims' advocates.

One session will deal with those left behind after a senseless killing, "helping them on that journey, helping them to get from that place of pain to a place of peace and empowerment," according to Johnson-Speight.  "We have several speakers who will talk about that.  One of the workshops will deal with how you tell your story and empower yourself, and make a difference on the issue."

Johnson-Speight created Mothers In Charge after her 24-year-old son was shot to death over a parking space.  That was eleven years ago.

Conferees are here from all over the nation.  Some attendees have come from Oregon, Massachusetts, and Florida.


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