FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
June 4, 2021
Julia Friedmann, West End Strategy Team
June is Gun Violence Awareness Month; Wear Orange to Call For Action
WASHINGTON — As the nation marks Wear Orange Weekend (June 4-6) as the beginning of Gun Violence Awareness Month, over 100 Americans are dying from gun violence every day. The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence released the following statement honoring the lives, families, and communities bearing the costs of the American epidemic of gun violence and calling for elected officials to take immediate action to pass gun violence prevention laws:
“Wearing orange to bring attention to gun violence was started by friends and family to honor the life of Hadiya Pendleton, who at 15 was fatally shot in a Chicago park in 2013. Now, it marks the beginning of Gun Violence Awareness Month, a month that also recognizes so many sorrowful anniversaries tied to gun violence — Breonna Taylor’s birthday, the massacres in Orlando and Charleston and, as always, the daily barrage of gun violence in all its forms that takes lives by suicide, within our communities, and within our homes.
“As we mark Gun Violence Awareness Month, we urge local, state and federal lawmakers to make June Gun Violence Action Month. Gun violence is a uniquely American public health crisis, and our elected officials must respond with a public health approach to effectively save lives. This approach is a toolbox for public safety that identifies and interrupts cycles of violence, brings together government services to address deeply-rooted social inequalities and trauma, and reduces unfettered access to firearms. These tools can be effectively implemented to make our communities safer — whether they are extreme risk laws that put time and space between guns and individuals at risk of harming themselves or others, investing in underserved communities and community violence prevention programs, implementing and enforcing universal background checks, or reforming law enforcement so that Black and Brown Americans don’t have to worry if a broken tail light will cost them their lives. Communities across the country are demanding that our lawmakers vote for and implement these public safety tools.
“The best way to carry the memories of the loved ones we have lost to gun violence is for our elected officials to immediately implement the public health approach to end gun violence. Together, we call on our lawmakers in Congress, in our state houses, and in our local governments to accompany their orange shirts with a true commitment to passing and implementing the laws that will keep us safe.”
About the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence
Founded in 1974, the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence is the nation’s oldest gun violence prevention organization. We believe gun violence should be rare and abnormal. CSGV develops and advocates for evidence-based solutions to reduce gun injury and death in all its forms.