LOCAL LEADERS PROMISE TO WORK TOGETHER TO REDUCE GUN VIOLENCE, PROCLAIM DAY OF REMEMBRANCE FOR SHOOTING VICTIMS
SAN DIEGO – With gun violence on the rise across the country, Mayor Todd Gloria, Police Chief David Nisleit and community leaders today on National Gun Violence Awareness Day reaffirmed their commitment to work together to implement public safety reforms and raise awareness of the danger of guns.
“For too long, the gun violence epidemic in this country has stolen too many lives and torn apart countless families, and it has only intensified this past year,” said Mayor Todd Gloria. “Today underscores our collective commitment throughout our city to take meaningful action at every level of government to end senseless gun violence and make our neighborhoods safer.”
National Gun Violence Awareness Day, also known as #WearOrange Day, started after 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton was killed by a stray bullet in Chicago, one week after performing at President Obama’s second inaugural parade in 2013. Pendleton’s friends have preserved her memory every year by wearing orange, the color used by hunters to protect themselves.
Locally, grassroots organizations like San Diegans 4 Gun Violence Prevention and Team ENOUGH play an important role in educating residents about the dangers of guns.
“Young people, who are often in harm’s way, are also educating their communities and civic leaders successfully on the data surrounding gun violence,” said Kara Chine, organizer of the event and board member of San Diegans 4 Gun Violence Prevention. “For every mass shooting in America that grabs headlines, there are dozens more that add up to 100 deaths by firearm per day on average. Besides pursuing sensible laws on firearms, students are helping focus efforts on suicide prevention, gang violence prevention, and evidence-based community violence intervention.”
In 2020, San Diego saw a 169% increase in ghost guns impounded compared to that of the previous year.
In 2019, ghost guns accounted for 4% of all guns recovered and in 2020 they accounted for 12% of guns recovered. In 2021, San Diego has already surpassed the number of ghost guns impounded in all of 2019 and is on pace to surpass that of 2020.
Congressman Scott Peters, District 52:
“Places like California are leading the way on sensible gun safety reforms, due in large part to engaged, and frankly enraged, citizens and students who’ve been tireless in this fight. They’ve marched and rallied and written to legislators, but we’re beyond the need for awareness – we see these tragedies in the news every day. I stand with the dedicated organizations that champion commonsense reforms, so our communities no longer have to suffer the deadly and heartbreaking consequences of gun violence.”
City Councilmember Sean Elo-Rivera, District 9:
"Everyone has a right to feel safe. Unfortunately, America continues to allow gun violence to deprive people, especially young people, of the safety they deserve. We must honor the victims of gun violence with action to end gun violence through policy change and investment in community-based solutions that ensures true public safety is provided to all San Diegans."
City Councilmember Marni von Wilpert, District 5:
“On this Gun Violence Awareness Day, we must re-commit to do everything possible to protect our communities from gun violence. We must all work together to build on successful local gun violence prevention programs, like the Gun Violence Restraining Order and the "No Shots Fired" programs, to end the gun violence epidemic we have in America.”
San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit:
“I am concerned about the rise in gun violence we are seeing this year,” said Chief Nisleit. “Raising awareness and collaborating with community organizations can help keep San Diego safe.”