How one local group plans to turn protests into change

Local News

(WSYR-TV) — When the signs get put away and the protests stop, one local group is determined to see that change still happens.

When violence and vandalism started in Downtown Syracuse following what were peaceful protests on Saturday night, Clifford Ryan was right in the middle.

“Things began to get a little out of control,” said Ryan, founder of Our Generation Against Violence. “We had individuals who wanted to do things that were contradictory to the message of the march.”

And Ryan and others were quickly put in the middle of something he said was never intended.

“It is a delicate balance and you find yourself in a position where you’re trying to keep the peace,” said Ryan.

That could have come from a few bad actions and Ryan’s takeaway is this:

We need to send out the message, but we need to do it in a way that you know will get results.

Clifford Ryan

And lead to further conversation with the city and police.

“We had hundreds of people peacefully protesting for two days, we had a brief amount of time where we had a small amount of individuals that did cause some violence and some damage,” said Mayor Ben Walsh.

“I understand that the city has a job to do,” said Ryan. “Our mayor is doing a great job. The mayor has a job to do as well as the chief of police.”

But, through conversations like the one’s Sunday night, Ryan believes Syracuse is ready for change and eager to help out.

Ryan and other community leaders have been actively engaged in conversation with Walsh and Syracuse Police Chief Kenton Buckner.

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