Miami-Dade County Commissioner Jean Monestime will once again team up with nationally syndicated radio host Papa Keith and 103.5 FM The Beat to host People Matter Fest to promote nonviolence. The free festival will take place on Saturday, June 16 from noon to 7 p.m. at Gwen Cherry Park, 7090 NW 22nd Ave., Miami, FL 33147. It will feature live music performances by a host of local artists including Rick Ross, Sam Sneek and Baby Soulja, as well as a host of activities for the whole family. Featuring Dolphins and Miami Heat starsBryan McKinney of the Miami Dolphins will host a special session of flag football, and the Miami Heat’s own Udonis Haslem will lead father-and-son teams in 3-on-3 basketball tournaments. Festival goers will also enjoy free haircuts, food trucks, a kids’ zone with bounce houses and more. The last People Matter Fest was held on April 21 at Little River Park. The nonviolence-themed festival began last year in an effort to bring the community together to call for a “ceasefire” on gun violence. “Not only did we accomplish our Ceasefire, but the police informed us that it lasted for weeks after and was their slowest reporting period on Shot Spotter for any summer,” Papa Keith said.Seeking 24-hour countywide ceasefireThis time, festival organizers are calling for a 24-hour countywide “ceasefire” beginning at 3:45 p.m. on the day of the festival. The moment will be marked by a Junkanoo band performance. “There is nothing better than for our community to come together in a spirit of love to celebrate life and nonviolence, and that’s what this is all about,” Commissioner Monestime said.
…say passengers fearfulThe quantity of passengers who utilise the route 42 (Diamond-Grove) buses to travel and conduct daily errands has diminished significantly and according to drivers, it is due to the far distance and unscrupulous operators who are operating outside of the recently relocated bus park.Speaking with Guyana Times on Saturday, the troubled drivers shared their complaints as they have not been able to make a proper daily earning since commuters are refusing to traverse the additional journey to reach the bus park. Additionally, others are choosing to utilise taxis and other transportation which willScarce passengers and reduced operations on Bugle Street since the relocation of the bus parkget them to their destination faster than waiting for the buses to full.One driver who identified himself as Derrick (only name given) told this publication that a day’s scenario involves many buses leaving the park with just a few passengers because it now takes close to 40 minutes to acquire a full load.“Some days, instead of 15 person you leaving here with seven or even less. The trouble is to walk at the back here with all your goods that you buy through this sun. The couple [persons] that reach here don’t want to wait so we got to go away with half load.”He explained that while the vehicles are consuming the same amount of fuel to complete the route, they are making just over half of their daily earnings.“It really hard for us cause they saying is years we gotta spend here. Some of us don’t know if we lasting til Christmas. When we getting the park back? This is not even a park. We operating on the street.”“I get a conductor that got to get pay by the end of the day. I got to buy gas and then I got to give bribe to the constab [City Constabulary] cause they coming every hour to check if we just step out of the line. That’s the truth. This is a hole cause some people still don’t know that we here!” said another by the name of Sheik.It was relayed by him that they drivers are also afraid to work into the late evening hours since the robbery rate in the area is skyrocketing. The prevalence of petty thieves is increasing in the nights, whereby commuters are constantly being relieved of the belongings, mostly phones, cash and jewellery.The men noted that they would’ve made efforts to contact the Mayor and City Council (M&CC) but to no avail.Since August, the park was relocated to make accommodation for vendors of the Stabroek Wharf which was deemed unsafe until rehabilitative works are carried out. Some have been placed on Bugle Street while the others are currently at Water Street.Drivers are calling for the Town Council to look into the issue and hopefully provide another spot which is not detached from the Stabroek Market and its adjoining transportation hub.