CeaseFire's Ameena Matthews stands on the other side of the violence

March 29, 2011

Produced by Eight Forty-Eight

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(WBEZ/Carrie Shepherd)
'Eight Forty-Eight's' Alison Cuddy and Ameena Matthews. Matthews is a violence interrupter with CeaseFire.

Monday, Eight Forty-Eight's Alison Cuddy sat down for part one of her conversation with Ameena Matthews. Matthews is a violence interrupter with the group CeaseFire. Their work is the subject of The Interrupters, the new documentary by Steve James and Alex Kotlowitz.

In her early life, Matthews was involved in gang life, but now she stands on the other side-working to stop the violence.

It’s obvious that Matthews’ job is not your usual 9 to 5. The film captures scenes of fighting and escalating tension that offer a glimpse of what it’s like to spend your day surrounded by violence. Alison Cuddy started the second part of her conversation with Matthews by asking what it takes to be in the midst of violence – day in and day out.

Music Button: Ocote Soul Sounds & Adrian Quesada, "Tres Ratas", from the CD Coconut Rock, (ESL)