From Presidential Candidates to Members of Congress and Mayors, Americans Came Together to Share the Stories of Gun Violence Survivors
More Than Two Hundred Events Across the Country To Date; Gun Violence Survivors Shared Stories at MomentsThatSurvive.org; #MomentsThatSurvive
NEW YORK – During National Gun Violence Survivors Week last week, February 1-8, Americans, including presidential candidates, members of Congress, mayors, partners, celebrities, athletes, and more, came together to share and amplify the stories of gun violence survivors who live with the impact of gun violence every day of the year. With a gun death rate 11 times greater than other high-income nations, by early February more people are killed with guns in the U.S. than are killed in our peer countries with guns in an entire calendar year.
In its second year, the campaign grew even further with more than 1,000 Americans directly impacted by gun violence sharing their stories to highlight the urgent need to address gun violence on the Moments That Survive story wall.
Notable updates included:
- More than 200 events organized so far by Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action volunteers, in partnership with the Everytown Survivor Network, to elevate the stories of survivors of gun violence.
- More than 48,000 social media posts throughout National Gun Violence Survivors Week, using #MomentsThatSurvive.
- Eight current and former presidential candidates participated.
- 99 members of Congress highlighted National Gun Violence Survivors Week to lift up survivor voices through social media, press conferences, and press releases. Several survivors were invited by members of Congress to be their guests at the State of the Union, including Everytown Survivor Network members Andrea Chamblee, who was invited by Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), and Mary Miller-Strobel, who was invited by Rep. Andy Levin (D-MI-09). National Gun Violence Survivors Week was also featured in the Congressional Record for Feb. 4, 5, 6, and 7 as several members of Congress honored the importance of sharing survivor stories on the U.S. House floor.
- Dozens of mayors and state officials from across the country shared stories from survivors on social media and issued mayoral proclamations, including Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh.
- Nearly 50 partners, including national membership groups, non-profit organizations, and faith partners across various issue areas, joined the effort in recognition of National Gun Violence Survivors Week. The groups included: American Association of Suicidology, American Federation of Teachers, American Medical Student Association, Amnesty International USA, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, Break the Cycle, Center for American Progress, Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, Cohen Veterans Network, Community Justice Action Fund, Doctors for America, Do Something.org, Equality Federation, Equality Florida, Gays Against Guns, Generation Progress, Giffords: Courage to Fight Gun Violence, Greater New York Hospital Association, Guns Down America, Human Rights Campaign, March For Our Lives, National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, National Council of Jewish Women, National Education Association, National Parent Teacher Association, Newtown Action Alliance, Orange Ribbons for Jamie, Remembering Darien, Sandy Hook Promise, Scrubs Addressing the Firearm Epidemic, States United to Prevent Gun Violence, Supermajority, To Write Love On Her Arms, This Is Our Lane, The National Urban League, The Soul Box Project, The United State of Women and Your Mom Cares.
“When gun violence survivors tell their stories, it can be a source of healing for them, and a source of motivation for everyone who listens,” said John Feinblatt, president of Everytown. “Survivor voices are a powerful reminder that the gun safety movement is fighting to spare others from tragedy, and that our ranks include true heroes.”
“At its core, National Gun Violence Survivors Week is an effort to honor and remember every single life that has been taken or changed forever by gun violence — and not just last week, but every single day of the year,” said Christopher Kocher, director of the Everytown Survivor Network, a program of the Everytown Support Fund. “Survivors bravely shared their stories about the lives and dreams that remain forever unfilled because of gun violence, and their courage has inspired countless others to recommit to the fight to end gun violence.”
The centerpiece of National Gun Violence Survivors Week was Moments That Survive, a year-round digital storytelling site and campaign in which Americans across the country share defining details of their experiences, in their own words. Moments That Survive builds community among gun violence survivors and helps the public understand how everyday life changes as a result of gun violence. All told, 58 percent of American adults or someone they care for have personally experienced gun violence in their lifetimes. Yet as a society, we still struggle to grasp the toll of the crisis beyond statistics or what we see or hear on the news. A new video on Moments That Survive featured survivors of gun violence telling their own stories and personal journey to share their stories and why doing so is meaningful to them.
In the run-up to National Gun Violence Survivors Week, PEOPLE Magazine unveiled Shattered: Gun Violence Survivors Speak Out, featuring Everytown Creative Council Chair Julianne Moore and six gun violence survivors: Carolyn Tuft, Colin Goddard, DeAndra Dycus, Julvonnia McDowell, Lisa Good, and Sara Macaluso. In the feature, these survivors shared their personal experiences with gun violence – the devastating stories behind the eye-opening statistics – and their activism for common-sense gun safety.