PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Ray Ventrone, business manager of Boilermakers Local 154, citing the Monroeville Mall shooting, and what he called, “a crisis of black on black crime,” announced a program where guns would be surrendered in return for training in the union’s welding program.

“One of the best ways to take a gun out of someone’s hand is to replace it with a paycheck,” County Executive Rich Fitzgerald said.

Ventrone says the program would not be easy and that it would take six months to a year to learn the welding trade.

He said he didn’t want to go out of state to find welders for a number of projects coming to the region.

The program would be piloted in Braddock. The first collection event will be at the Free Store at 420 Braddock Avenue in Braddock.

It will take place on Tuesday, Feb. 24 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.

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