Violence is a plague on society, and whether it happens at home or overseas, it affects members of the Tampa Bay Community. At the July meeting of Tampa Bay Young Republicans at the Floridan July 23, attendees had a chance to learn more about what is being done to combat this ill through the legal system and grassroots efforts.
Chris Sprowls kicked off the night, talking about his role as a special prosecutor in the gang unit of the State Attorney’s Office. Finding ways to deter and mitigate gangs is a serious issue for the Tampa Bay and beyond because they destabilize communities through violence and additional illegal activities. To further his cause, Sprowls is running to become the state representative for District 65 in Pinellas County. Sprowls said he loves his current job and isn’t leaving it for any other reason than to make even more of a difference against the problems he’s seen.
Sprowls also mentioned a project underway to help veterans returning from war who have trouble readjusting. Often, these members of society end up on the street and/or committing minor crimes as they struggle to overcome the tragedies they witnessed during their service. A new court will focus just on them, helping to get them the assistance they need to put their lives back together instead of simply putting them through the regular judicial system.
The night’s second speaker, U.S. Army Sgt. Brian Taylor Urruela, is a wounded warrior himself, suffering the loss of his leg after being hit by roadside bombs in Iraq. Urruela helped form VETSports, a group that uses sports to help rehabilitate injured service members. The organization is always looking for volunteers and donations to help it further its cause.
The meeting rounded out with administrative discussions important for members. The Florida Federation of Young Republicans Annual Convention takes place August 16-18 in Orlando. Registration is now open, but the number of delegates for each regional club is still undetermined. This Saturday, July 27th, is the Yeungling Brewery tour. The event is free for TBYRs, $5 for non-members. Finally, at the next meeting on August 27th, TBYR will hold elections for new officers, so make sure to be at the Floridan. Social hour starts at 6:30 p.m., meeting begins at 7 p.m.
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