Members of Congress and advocates give survivors and family members a voice at President’s speech
More than 120 survivors and family members in Washington this week as part of Mayors Against Illegal Guns’ Demand A Plan campaign
WASHINGTON, DC – Members of Congress advocating for new gun safety laws, with support from Mayors Against Illegal Guns, are providing people affected by gun violence the opportunity to tell their stories and send a message about guns to Washington as guests at tonight’s State of the Union address.
Representatives Jim Langevin (RI-2), Carolyn McCarthy (NY-4), Keith Ellison (MN-5), Rosa DeLauro (CT-3) and David Cicilline (RI-1) spearheaded an effort in which more than 20 members gave their one ticket to the President’s speech to someone affected by a gun tragedy. A group of the Representatives, including those listed above, and their guests joined Mark Glaze, Director of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, and Dan Gross, the President of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, whose brother was shot at the Empire State Building, to speak out just hours before President Obama delivers the State of the Union.
The event took place in the Gabriel Zimmerman Meeting Room in the Capitol Visitors Center, named for the congressional staffer killed in the Tucson shooting in 2011. Gabe’s mother, Emily Nottingham, participated as the guest of Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09).
In addition, more than 100 other survivors and family members affected by gun violence were in attendance as part of Mayors Against Illegal Guns’ Demand A Plan campaign for common-sense gun law reforms that will help end the gun violence that kills 33 Americans every day. These proposals are backed by the Members of Congress who led the State of the Union effort. Survivors and family members present at the press conference came from at least 20 states and Washington, DC.
“We know all too well that difficult political obstacles threaten the chances of enacting responsible legislation to better protect our communities and especially our children,” said Langevin, McCarthy, Ellison, DeLauro and Cicilline. “However, the vast majority of Americans want us to strengthen gun safety laws. For our effort to be successful, our elected officials must hear an outcry, and they must hear the stories of those who have been impacted by gun violence. It is our hope that the presence of these guests in the House Gallery will send a strong message that the status quo in our gun laws is unacceptable.”