Everytown for Gun Safety and its grassroots networks, Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, released the following statements in honor of the five-year mark of the Route 91 Harvest Festival shooting in Las Vegas on October 1st, 2017, in which a shooter killed at least 60 people and injured at least 411 people. The incident was the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history. October 1 is also the seven year mark of the Umpqua Community College shooting in Roseburg, Oregon, where an enrolled student shot and killed an assistant professor and eight students, and shot and wounded nine others.
“Five years after the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history, we honor the victims and survivors of the Las Vegas shooting by recommitting ourselves to a future where we can all gather in peace,” said John Feinblatt, President of Everytown for Gun Safety. “The community of Las Vegas is stronger than ever, which is a testament to the sense of hope that has always defined this city in the sand.”
“Five years ago, Las Vegas and communities across the country were devastated by a despicable act of gun violence,” said Shannon Watts, Founder of Moms Demand Action. “Sadly in the wake of this horrific massacre, mass murders have become a familiar experience of families across the country. Even more commonplace is the daily gun violence that takes over 110 lives every day — but our grassroots movement will continue to fight to prevent gun violence and save lives.”
“Our Las Vegas community will never recover from the scars and incessant pain of the October 1, 2017 massacre,” said Geena Marano, Everytown Survivor Fellow and survivor of the Route 91 Harvest Festival mass shooting. “We should be able to go to concerts, attend church, send our kids to school, or simply grocery shop without fear of being killed by gun violence. On this five-year mark, we honor the lives impacted and recommit ourselves to fighting against all forms of gun violence.”
Gun violence in all forms leaves an enduring mark on the lives of those who are personally impacted. 58 percent of adults in America, including 68 percent of Black and Latinx Americans, are survivors of gun violence. Gun violence forever changes the lives of people who experience it, witness it, and are threatened by it—and the trauma from gun violence doesn’t end when the shooting stops.
In the years following the shooting, Nevada has taken measures to prevent gun violence, including prohibiting the possession and sale of bump stocks and other devices that can be used to effectively convert semi automatic firearms into fully automatic guns like the one used by the gunman on October 1, 2017 that allowed him to shoot hundreds of people in a matter of minutes. This summer, Nevada Treasurer Zach Conine announced the State of Nevada would divest from any business that profits from the sale or manufacture of assault-style weapons. Nevada also signed into law an extreme risk law or red flag law in 2019, which can prevent tragedy before it strikes by empowering families and law enforcement to get a court order to temporarily prevent a person from accessing guns when they might be a risk to themselves or others. While progress has been made, there is more work to do to prevent the 519 number of gun deaths that occur per year in Nevada.