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New York Attorney General Letitia James, Elected Officials, Faith Leaders, and Gun Safety Advocates Gathered For Evening of Reflection During National Gun Violence Survivors Week

February 6, 2023

59 Percent Of Adults Reported That They Or Someone They Care For Have Experienced Gun Violence In Their Lifetime

NEW YORK – Today, Everytown for Gun Safety and its grassroots arm Moms Demand Action joined New York Attorney General Letitia James, Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, Pastor Gilford Monrose, Pastor Edward-Richard Hinds, Pastor Louis Straker Jr., Rev. Sharon Risher, Rev. Charles Harrison, Rev. Larita Rice-Barnes, Rev. Charles Galbreath, Bishop Eric D. Garnes, Bishop Cecil Riley, Oresa Napper-Williams, Jumaane Williams, gun violence survivors, members of the 67th Precinct Clergy Council, and the Clergy for Safe Cities to honor survivors of gun violence during National Gun Violence Survivors Week. By early February, more Americans are killed by gun violence than they are killed in other high- income nations in an entire year. Just this afternoon, two students were shot and wounded in Williamsburg just a block away from Grand Street Campus High School. 

“Survivors are the north star of the gun violence prevention movement — everyday I am inspired by their courage and commitment to turn pain into purpose,” said Angela Ferrell-Zabala, Senior Vice President of Movement Building at Everytown for Gun Safety. “During National Gun Violence Survivors Week, I invite us all to be active in our faith by fighting for gun safety laws that will protect all communities from gun violence.”

“National Gun Violence Survivors Week provides us an opportunity to honor those who are affected by gun violence,” said Rev. Sharon Risher, a member of the Everytown Faith Council and part of the Everytown Survivor Network whose mother, two cousins, and childhood friend were shot and killed in the 2015 shooting in Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston. “We can celebrate resiliency and our ability to move forward even as we remember the pain so many survivors have suffered.”

National Gun Violence Survivors Week, taking place February 1-7, seeks to share and amplify the stories of gun violence survivors who live every day with the agonizing and unending impact of gun violence. Every hour, more and more families, friends, colleagues and neighbors in America become survivors of gun violence. During National Gun Violence Survivors Week and throughout the year, we honor all victims and survivors of gun violence, whether they’re just beginning an all-too common American experience of processing and healing from the trauma of gun violence, or have been living with an enduring pain that never goes away.

In relation to Black History Month, National Gun Violence Survivors Week also prompts us to question the disproportionate impact that gun violence has on Black communities and work towards impactful and equitable solutions. This Black History Month, we honor the resilience and innovation of leaders and survivors who have carried the Black community through generations of systemic inequities and violence. Everytown’s recently released “Gun Violence Survivors in America” report further demonstrates how Black people in the United States are devastated by gun violence at a disproportionate rate. 71 percent of Black adults in America are survivors of gun violence, and the resulting trauma reverberates through families and communities.

Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action volunteers will be hosting nearly 100 virtual or in-person events recognizing National Gun Violence Survivors Week, engaging survivors, community leaders, and local partners and students. 

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