DETROIT (WWJ) – Members of a Detroit task force say young people are dying because they use violence as their go-to method for settling disputes.

Violence among youth has become an issue and the Youth Violence Prevention Task Force is taking a stand against it.

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James Tate, Detroit City Council member and co-chair of the Youth Violence Prevention Task Force, says that even words can cause harm with the youth today.

“We tell them that sticks and stones may break your bones but words won’t hurt you,” Tate said.  “The reality is that they do.  Those words hurt.”

Tate said that it’s easy to tell young people to put down the guns but they have to be provided with alternatives to violence.

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Tate also said that grief over a violent situation causes a huge risk for an incident to occur as well. “…Because many times, if a young person has grief over a violent situation, it has a way – if they don’t deal with it – to manifest itself into anger,” Tate said.  “That anger then turns into a violent episode.”

The Youth Violence Prevention Task Force meets Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. for their monthly meeting at St. John Open Arms on East Outer Drive in Detroit.

Parents are urged to bring their children and there will be grief counselors on hand to help children understand how to deal with anger, loss and grief.

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For more information on the Youth Violence Prevention Task Force visit this link.