Pelham United Leads Community Rally for Social Justice

PMHS Students and Alumni Join Forces with Pelham United for Equality

Jack Tirsch, Junior, Editorial Director

Since 2018, there have been more than 560 murders of African American people at the hands of police in the U.S. In response to this and recent events involving police brutality against the African American community, Pelham United held a rally and march on June 13. The goal of this local, community-run organization is to draw awareness to the racial inequalities that take place in Pelham frequently that go unnoticed and unreported and therefore are attempting to initiate change within the community. The June 13 rally was widely advertised through social media postings on Pelham United’s Facebook and Instagram accounts (@pelhamunited). Pelham United is led by several PMHS alumni, including Veronica Stern and Messiah Morency, both graduates of the Class of 2017.

“Living in a predominately white town can be really tough as a person of color and I hope that Pelham United can be a group that the residents of Pelham can look to for guidance on race issues that come up in town. We go through things that build up over time. With that being said, I felt that the rally was a very cathartic experience,” Stern said.

Additionally, Stern spoke about what her experience working on Pelham United has meant for her.

“It’s taught me that more people want change in our town than most of us to realize. That if you want to see that change happen, you have to use your voice. It is our most powerful tool for change.”

Another leader of the event, Messiah Morency ’17,reflected on how Pelham United will continue its work.

“We have started planning and preparing to hold community discussions about racism for the near future and hope that this brings some community engagement back to the important issues we are facing as a town and as a nation. We are open to working with neighboring town organizations if the opportunity presents itself. Surrounding towns are more than welcome to, and hopefully will form their own groups, and figuratively speaking: hop on board to help heal Westchester County as a whole.” 

Of course, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the community, any future rallies or discussions will be planned accordingly to accommodate the circumstances. Pelham United will, nonetheless, continue its mission to make for a more inclusive and racially sensitive community.