A year ago, rapper Meek Mill was in a Chester prison. On Thursday, he was in Philadelphia City Council chambers being honored.
Council served him with a congratulatory resolution for his criminal justice activism and declared March 15-17 as Meek Mill Weekend.
State Sen. Sharif Street joined Council President Darrell Clarke Thursday in presenting the resolution and commending the hip-hop star for his involvement in his hometown.
Meek Mill Weekend arrives just in time for the musician’s Friday and Saturday performances at the newly opened Met at 858 N. Broad St.
Mill was released from the state prison in Chester last April when a Pennsylvania Supreme Court order ended his five-month term that resulted from probation violations. The rapper, 31, was originally sentenced in 2009 to up to 23 months for charges that included carrying firearms in public, carrying a firearm without a license, and drug possession.
Since his release, he has teamed up with fellow rapper Jay-Z and Philadelphia 76ers co-owner Michael Rubin to create the Reform Alliance, an organization focused on changing the U.S. criminal justice system.
“I don’t want my son growing up in the world in a place where he decided to use marijuana one time [and] he could spend two or three years in a state penitentiary. … I think we deserve better,” Mill said.
Mill recalled growing up in Philadelphia with his mother and his experiences being in and out of prison.
“I’ve been in prison a few times for probation violation, but the one time that my city of Philadelphia showed me support was the one time I came out of prison,” Mill said. “I want to show the support back and do it for the people that actually stood up for me.”
“We’ve got a lot of violence we’ve got to fix here, where a lot of people who look like me die on a daily basis. If you watch the news, a lot of young men die from gun violence,” Mill added. “I still try to stick as close as I can and give my influence and bring what I can bring to the city of Philadelphia, and make things a better place.”