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Gunfire Rings Out at Multiple High School Sporting Events Over the Weekend, Killing One Student and Traumatizing Countless Communities 

August 29, 2023

In a Shooting Yesterday at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a Faculty Member was Also Shot And Killed During The Second Week of Classes

NEW YORK — Students Demand Action and Mom Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots networks, issued the following statements on gun violence-related incidents that occurred during high school football games in multiple states across the country, leaving one student dead and at least seven people injured in total. The shootings occurred in Choctaw, Oklahoma, Los Angeles, California and Virginia Beach, Virginia, as well as a threat of an active shooter in Tulsa, Oklahoma. 

Yesterday, following this weekend’s shootings, a faculty member was shot and killed at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The school was forced to go into lockdown during what was the first day of the second week of the semester. So far in 2023, there’ve been at least 85 incidents of gunfire on school grounds across the country, resulting in 26 deaths and 57 injuries.

“These tragedies are a prime example of why every year, it gets more and more terrifying for students to go back to a place where we don’t feel safe,” said Cora Lynn Mundy, a member of Students Demand Action National Advisory Board and high school student at Staten Island Academy in New York. “We should be having the time of our lives at school sporting events, whether we’re playing in these games or cheering from the stands, but instead we’re dodging bullets. Lawmakers have to act, they have the responsibility to put policies in place that help make sure firearms don’t end up in the wrong hands. Our lives literally depend on it.” 

“We’re living a nightmare on repeat. Our children don’t deserve to live like this and certainly don’t deserve to die like this,” said Beth Furnish, a volunteer with the Oklahoma chapter of Moms Demand Action. “Our lawmakers need to act like adults and enact policies that prioritize our children over the gun lobby. Any inaction is a slap in the face to us, our children, and those across the country facing the rippling effects of gun violence.”

When it comes to how students are exposed to gun violence, gunfire at schools is just the tip of the iceberg. Firearms are the leading cause of death for children, teens and college aged people in America. Every year, 19,000 children and teens are shot and killed or wounded and approximately 3 million are exposed to gun violence. Witnessing shootings – whether in their schools, their communities or their homes – can have a devastating impact. Even for those who haven’t experienced gun violence, the trauma of experiencing active shooter drills and swatting incidents – which are happening with increasing frequency – leaves students, teachers and parents across the country experiencing firsthand the impacts of the gun lobby’s ‘guns everywhere’ agenda. More information on gun violence on school grounds and school safety is available here

To support those returning to school, Students Demand Action recently launched an online school safety resource to provide students, teachers, administrators and parents with the appropriate tools and information to advocate for the safety of school communities. From learning about meaningful advocacy tactics, to finding key statistics on school safety solutions, the hub serves as a pivotal guide to understanding how best to keep schools free from gun violence in our community. 

If you are interested in speaking with a Students Demand Action or Moms Demand Action volunteer, or a policy expert on school safety please reach out to [email protected]

If you're a member of the media, please send inquiries to [email protected]