The record rates of violence in Chicago have been well documented. Every Monday, it seems, the death toll numbers coming out of the Windy City are the subject of national headlines. But while political pundits continue to debate how best to stem the tide of violence, many local women are taking matters into their own hands
As news hub AFP reports, retired parole officer Javondlynn Dunagan was a regular at the range who was struck by the absence of ladies—particularly African-American ladies like herself. After asking around, she determined that it was a fear of guns that was keeping them away. So Dunagan set out to change that. She offered training classes and founded the Ladies of Steel gun club—the group now meets twice a month to sharpen their skills.
Dunagan also offers courses like a “Mommy & Me Self-Defense Class” and works with women in Chicago’s south side communities—the areas where violence has skyrocketed. “You see people shooting everywhere,” said one of the class attendees. “You just never know, so you’d better be prepared.”