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'Choose Peace': Gainesville to host gun violence summit to address deaths and violence in the community

Gainesville will host a two-day summit to address the high gun violence rates sweeping the city. 

The summit, titled "Choose Peace: Gun Violence Must Cease," will be held Sunday and Monday and seeks to address the nuances and logistical issues facing gun-violence prevention.

The event aims to bring community stakeholders together alongside gun violence prevention experts to discuss solutions. It will be held at the Hilton University of Florida Conference Center from 12:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Sunday and Monday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m..

Gun violence rates have steadily been increasing since 2019, hitting their peak in 2021 with 25 homicides committed with a firearm, according to the Florida Department of Health

However, gun violence did decrease slightly in 2022, but 2023 has already had at least seven shooting deaths — two of which were from a shooting less than a month ago.

Gainesville is also ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in America, relative to other cities of its size, because of its violent crime rate coupled with its murder rate, according to a Neighborhood Scout report.

“For Gainesville, we found that the violent crime rate is one of the highest in the nation across communities of all sizes (both large and small),” the report stated. “Within Florida, more than 92% of the communities have a lower crime rate than Gainesville.”

The city has released each day's agenda here.

Richard is a reporter for WUFT News who can be reached by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing