Moms Demand Action volunteers reflect on Congress passing the first major gun safety law in nearly 26 years
When 26 children and educators were killed in a mass shooting at Sandy Hook School in Newton, CT in 2012, people across America had enough. Mothers were scared for their children, survivors of gun violence were outraged, and everyday people were ready to fight for changes that would save lives. When Shannon Watts started a Facebook group for outraged people across the country the day after the devastating shooting, Moms Demand Action was born. Nearly 10 years of advocacy and hard work from volunteers later, Congress just passed its first meaningful gun safety law in nearly 26 years with the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act.
This win isn’t just about the policy. It’s personal for the gun violence survivors and the volunteers who have fought for this moment—who in the wake of tragedy, have gotten up and fought harder and longer to be on the right side of history. Congress passing the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act is a victory carried by volunteers who have worked tirelessly to influence positive change in this country—in their communities, schools, corporations, and now even in Congress.
This is a huge win for the gun violence prevention movement, but the work doesn’t stop here. Seven Moms Demand Action volunteers share their journey to this victory—and where we go from here.
“Victory to me, after working tirelessly in this movement, is a good night’s sleep, a sigh of relief. After the sleep, the sigh, we will continue to do the work, will move forward knowing another important obstacle has been overcome.”
—Marie Delus, New York Moms Demand Action Volunteer and Survivor Lead
“I’ve never felt prouder to be in this organization than now because of all the things we’ve been able to accomplish in such a short amount of time with the help of so many people.… I’m hopeful for the future because this movement is only getting stronger as more people get involved.”
—Alex Navarro, California Moms Demand Action Statewide City Gun Violence Prevention Lead
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health Statistics. WONDER Online Database, Underlying Cause of Death. A yearly average was developed using four years of the most recent available data: 2018 to 2021.