Fifth Annual National Gun Violence Survivors Week Ends With Thousands of Survivor Stories Amplified Across The Country
30 Mayors from Across the Country Joined Mayors Against Illegal Guns in Honor of This Year’s Campaign
From Members of Congress to Professional Athletic Organizations, Thousands Came Together to Uplift the Voices of Gun Violence Survivors
Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action Hosted Over 100 Events Across the Country; Survivors Shared Stories on MomentsThatSurvive.org, #GVSurvivorsWeek and More
NEW YORK – This past week, members of Congress, mayors, partner organizations and others came together to celebrate the lived experiences of gun violence survivors in honor of National Gun Violence Survivors Week. With a gun death rate 13 times greater than other high-income nations, by early February, more people are killed with guns in the United States than are killed with guns in other high-income countries in an entire year. Beginning last Wednesday, National Gun Violence Survivors Week was a time to take stock of the terrible human toll of America’s gun violence crisis – and recommit ourselves to honoring survivors with action. Thousands of survivors also came together to share their stories on the Moments That Survive story wall and on social media using the hashtag #GVSurvivorsWeek.
This year, in honor of National Gun Violence Survivors Week, 30 mayors from across the country joined Mayors Against Illegal Guns, including: Half Moon Bay, California Mayor Deborah Penrose, Oakland, California Mayor Sheng Thao, Los Angeles, California Mayor Karen Bass, Long Beach, California Mayor Rex Richardson, Santa Monica, California Mayor Gleam Davis, Saratoga Springs, New York Mayor Ron Kim, Jackson, Michigan Mayor Daniel Mahoney, Flint, Michigan Mayor Sheldon A. Neeley, Kansas City, Kansas Mayor Tyrone A. Garner, Louisville, Kentucky Mayor Craig Greenberg, and Providence, Rhode Island Mayor Brett Smiley. Mayors Against Illegal Guns is a nonpartisan coalition of more than 2,000 current and former mayors fighting for gun safety in their communities.
Notable highlights from the week include:
- Over 100 events and activities were organized by Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action volunteers, in partnership with the Everytown Survivor Network, the Everytown Faith Council and dozens of local community organizations, to elevate the stories of survivors of gun violence in their communities. Highlights include:
- A roundtable discussion in Cleveland, Ohio with ATF Director Steve Dettlebach, Cleveland, Ohio Mayor Justin Bibb, local gun violence survivors including Everytown Survivor Fellow Michelle Bell, and community-based violence intervention and survivor services leaders.
- New York Attorney General Letitia James, Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, members of the 67th Precinct Clergy Council and the Clergy for Safe Cities gathered in New York City for an evening of reflection to honor gun violence survivors.
- Tens of thousands of Twitter mentions throughout National Gun Violence Survivors Week, using #GVSurvivorsWeek and related terms.
- More than 100 Members of Congress highlighted National Gun Violence Survivors Week to lift up survivor voices through social media, virtual conversations, and press releases, including Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), House Minority Whip Katherine Clark (D-MA), House Democratic Caucus Chair Pete Aguilar (D-CA), Congressional Black Caucus Chair Steven Horsford (D-NV), Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ), Reps. Lucy McBath (D-GA) and Robin Kelly (D-IL), and more.
- More than 200 mayors, state and federal officials from across the country elevated the importance of the week, including stories from survivors on social media and issuing mayoral proclamations.
- More than 50 partner organizations, including national membership groups, non-profit organizations, athletic organizations and faith partners across various issue areas, joined the effort. Notable groups include Super Bowl-bound Philadelphia Eagles, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, Center for American Progress, Change the Ref, Giffords: Courage to Fight Gun Violence, Human Rights Campaign, National PTA, Injury Free Coalition for Kids, Jared’s Heart of Success, Jewish Women International, Latino Victory Fund, March for Our Lives, National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, National Network to End Domestic Violence, National Organizations for Youth Safety (NOYS), National Organization of Black Law Enforcement (NOBLE) and Voto Latino.
“America’s culture of silence around gun violence means that too often we don’t talk about or fully understand the lasting impact it leaves on survivors,” said Ashley Castillo, a member of the Students Demand Action National Advisory Board and member of the Everytown Survivor Network. “National Gun Violence Survivors Week is always such a special time of year for survivors like myself to stand up, speak out, and share our stories of empathy, courage and resilience.”
“Once again, National Gun Violence Survivors Week has shown that we are a nation made of strong, awe-inspiring survivors,” said Keenon James, Senior Director of the Everytown Survivor Network. “Survivors continue to be the conscience of the gun violence prevention movement, and it’s always incredibly moving to realize that there are so many who are proud to fight alongside us.”
Additionally, in recognition of National Gun Violence Survivors Week, Everytown released a new report: “Gun Violence Survivors in America.” The report explores the prevalence of gun violence in America through the experiences of gun violence survivors, perspectives on gun violence, the impact of trauma, and support strategies to cope with trauma resulting from gun violence. The findings from the report show that 59 percent of adults in America, including 71 percent of Black and 60 percent of Latinx people, are survivors of gun violence, either experiencing gun violence themselves or caring about someone who has experienced gun violence in their lifetime.