The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to recognize June 2 as National Gun Violence Awareness Day as firearms have become the leading cause of death among children. and adolescents in the United States.
In light of this, residents have been encouraged to "honor those whose lives are cut short and the countless survivors who are injured by shootings every day," according to the proclamation presented by Supervisor Dave Pine, Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, and the supervisor ??Noelia Corzo.
"This year, a proclamation honoring survivors of gun violence takes on greater significance because of the tragedy we experienced at Half Moon Bay," Pine said. "Establishing funding policies and programs will always be important, but so is continuing to educate people about the costs of gun violence: lives lost, families torn apart, and communities forever changed."
And it is that, on January 23, 2023, seven people died in a mass shooting on farms in Half Moon Bay, one of the 243 mass shootings that have occurred in the United States so far this year, according to Gun Violence. Archive.
“We know that gun violence is a preventable disease that plagues our country in a unique way,” Corzo said. We honor communities torn apart by gun violence. Together we call for meaningful action to save lives. We shouldn't have to live in fear of gun violence."
Ruth Borenstein of the nonprofit organization Brady: United Against Gun Violence, said gun violence in California is trending downward due to "common sense" measures enacted by state and local governments.
"I deeply believe that cities and counties are the laboratories of democracy," Borenstein said. “What California does is followed in other states. We are making progress and I don't want to lose sight of that."
The first Friday in June marks the beginning of the “Wear Orange” weekend, this year recognized as June 2-4, 2023, in honor of the memory of Hadiya Pendleton, a 15-year-old girl who was shot to death in a Chicago playground a week after attending President Obama's second inaugural parade in 2013.
Orange is the color hunters wear for safety.
Deborah Kemper, executive director of the San Mateo County Bar Association, continues to experience the impact of gun violence more than five decades after her mother, Lorena Thompson, was murdered when she was 7 years old.
"Fifty-eight years later, I have children he never knew. I have grandchildren that she never met. I have six adopted children that he never knew," Kemper said. «Do you want to know the effects of armed violence? The person who suffers armed violence suffers for a lifetime. It becomes a generational loss."
The proclamation indicates that an average of 3,540 children and adolescents are killed by firearms each year, of which 35 percent are by suicide and 60 percent by homicide.
The proclamation, which was presented to Kemper along with Borenstein and representatives of Moms Demand Action, notes that the Board of Supervisors has taken steps to reduce gun violence by enacting laws requiring safe home storage of firearms, supporting gun buy-back events, and implementing firearm surrender orders, among other actions .
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