Coalition Statement Marking One Year Since the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Shooting

Coalition Statement Marking One Year Since the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Shooting

Tallahassee, Fla. – Today we reflect on the one year mark of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre, where a gunman equipped with a military-style assault rifle, high capacity magazines, and other weapons took the lives of 17 individuals and injured another 17. The Florida Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence issued this statement in connection with the one year mark:

The Coalition would like to first honor those 17 people killed on this day one year ago:

Alyssa Alhadeff, 14
Scott Beigel, 35
Martin Duque, 14
Nicholas Dworet, 17
Aaron Feis, 37
Jaime Guttenberg, 14
Chris Hixon, 49
Luke Hoyer, 15
Cara Loughran, 14
Gina Montalto, 14
Joaquin Oliver, 17
Alaina Petty, 14
Meadow Pollack, 18
Helena Ramsay, 17
Alex Schachter, 14
Carmen Schentrup, 16
Peter Wang, 15

And, the 17 people injured:

Samantha Fuentes
Alexander Dworet (brother of Nicholas)
Isabel Chequer
Stacey Lynn Lippel
Madeleine Wilford
Anthony Borges
Kyle Laman
Ashley Baez
Justin Colton
Marian Kabachenko
Kheshava Managapuram
Samantha Mayor
William Olson
Genesis Valentin
Benjamin Wikander
Daniela Menescal
Samantha Grady

Over the last year, many new people — some much younger than they should have to be — have entered the sphere of advocacy working towards advancing gun reform here in Florida and across the nation. We believe that this groundswell of support to reform our state and federal gun laws is an important step in honoring the lives lost and forever changed on February 14, 2018 in Parkland. It is truly remarkable that these survivors and loved ones have found a way to turn their hurt and their sorrow into decisive and unapologetic action.

However, one has to ask the question of whether our elected officials are truly listening to that groundswell of support. Many Parkland survivors and families of those killed have called for safe schools and banning military-style assault weapons like the one used at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Instead, the Legislature refuses to even hear a bill that would take weapons of war off our streets, while at the same time considering arming classroom teachers as a way to secure our schools.

Securing our children’s schools and ensuring that administrators have the mental health resources they need to prevent future school shootings before they happen is of the utmost importance — that fundamental truth rings true, regardless of political beliefs. We urge the Legislature to acknowledge this groundswell of support and enact the common sense laws that have been proposed, like HB 455 and SB 466. We have already seen the citizens of Florida begin to take matters into their own hands with a proposed constitutional amendment to ban assault weapons with a clearly set definition.

We honor the 17 lives lost on this day one year ago in all that we do. We will continue to advocate for smart, common sense laws in Florida to honor the lives of Alyssa, Scott, Martin, Nicholas, Aaron, Jaime, Chris, Luke, Cara, Gina, Joaquin, Alaina, Meadow, Helena, Alex, Carmen, and Peter, as well as the 2,704 lives ended by gun violence each year in our state. May the families of those lost find peace on this, and on all days.

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