The Texas chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots networks, released the following statement in response to a shooting at Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, Texas yesterday evening. According to reports, one person was shot and killed, and three more were shot and wounded.
“Our hearts go out to the families, friends, and loved ones affected in yesterday’s tragedy,” said Selina Saenz, a volunteer with the Texas chapter of Moms Demand Action. “No one should have to live in fear when shopping at their local mall, attending school, or simply taking a walk in their own neighborhood. We need action and we need it now. Senseless tragedies like last night will continue to occur until our lawmakers take meaningful steps to protect our communities.”
In the wake of the mass shooting in Uvalde last May, Texas state lawmakers put politics over public safety, failing to take meaningful action on life-saving gun safety legislation. This has proven to be the pattern of Texas leadership. After the mass shootings in El Paso and Midland-Odessa, Texas lawmakers promised they’d do something. After the shootings in Sutherland Springs and Santa Fe, they held roundtable discussions and issued reports to suggest they were taking gun violence seriously but instead of taking action, lawmakers returned to business as usual, and passed bills to further weaken the state’s already-weak gun laws, putting Texans in even more danger.
Last legislative session, over objections from gun safety advocates, gun violence survivors, law enforcement, and other key public safety stakeholders, the Texas legislature passed permitless carry, a dangerous policy that can increase gun violence.
During this legislative session, lawmakers must show up for their constituents and reject the dangerous ‘guns everywhere’ agenda and instead prioritize passing critical gun violence prevention measures such as raising the age to purchase certain firearms and securing funding for life-saving community violence intervention programs.
In an average year, 3,996 people die and 5,556 are wounded by guns in Texas. Gun violence in Texas costs $1,769 per person each year. Gun deaths and injuries cost Texas $51.3 billion each year, of which $1.1 billion is paid by taxpayers.More information about gun violence in Texas is available here.