PODCAST: TRAP House Chicago is a restorative justice and streetwear brand
Written by Vocalo Radio on June 5, 2020
Heavy Crownz, Chicago-based artist, rapper and the manager and ambassador of TRAP House Chicago, spoke to our Midday Host Bekoe about the aftermath of this week’s protests.
TRAP House Chicago is a restorative justice and streetwear brand. Their clothing store also doubles as a community center and event space where the team works to build up their customers and collective. Heavy Crownz talked with Bekoe about the community clean-up effort, Mayor Lightfoot’s $10 million fund, and what Chicago needs to do moving forward.
Heavy Crownz said the area around the store was impacted by looting, as all sides of the city have been. But while the looting was significant, he noticed how sometimes, it’s funny how things work out.
“After the looting comes an opportunity for community engagement – cleaning, giving [and] many opportunities of unification.”
Before TRAP House even began to give out food (more on that below), they were going around the city to look for places to help clean. And by Tuesday morning, he found most of the places already cleaned up! Cars kept stopping with people asking if they wanted various food, baby items and women’s essentials. A beautiful problem, he remarked.
After the events of this weekend went down, the entreprenuer knew TRAP House needed to step up to help. In collaboration with Chicago’s Healthy Hood organization, TRAP House’s building was turned into a temporary food distribution point.
While the site isn’t giving food out anymore, Healthy Hood is continuing their efforts on the West Side. Meanwhile, some artists are set to come through TRAP House to create art on the wooden boards covering windows of surrounding businesses.
Moving forward, Heavy Crownz said Mayor Lightfoot’s $10 million fund for South and West Side businesses impacted from this weekend is amazing. Still, he cautioned, he prefers that the recipients should be Black and Brown businesses.
That being said, he’s not expecting much to come to TRAP House, as he’s never reaped benefits from similar funds of money. But at the end of the day, he wants the allocation to be easily seen. The impacts should not be easily missed in their magnitude.
As for other ways the city could continue to positively progress from this moment, he said:
“I’m also more concerned about seeing some legislation being brought through for the defunding of the police, to a degree. Also, I would like to see the money that we already have, within the city, be allocated differently; less to police systems and penal systems, and more to restorative systems for our people.”
Additionally, he is in favor of having police officers consistently have days in the month where they would physically serve the people through different means. One example he gave would be to hand out food.
This, he says, would be a way to begin a mending and building of relationships between the police and the communities they serve. Service can appear in many ways, but simply patrolling hasn’t proven the most effective, he said.
Listen to the full interview here:
Written by Shelby Kluver
More from Vocalo: