RE: Local Groups Hold Vigil for Gun Violence Victims
Friday, June 14, 2013
Palatine Metra Station
Media Contact: Matt Flamm
Phone number (847)920-8683
Local Groups Hold Vigil for Gun Violence Victims
PALATINE, IL.- More than 100 residents of the west and northwest suburbs held a vigil to commemorate the six-month anniversary of the Sandy Hook shootings last Friday, June 14th at the Palatine Metra station. Gun violence prevention groups from the greater Chicagoland area joined with Northwest Suburbs Organizing for Action (NWSOFA) to honor those victims and 4,800 other Americans murdered since the Newtown massacre, while Congress has failed to enact commonsense measures to reduce gun violence that are supported by 90% of the American people. Representative Peter Roskam, who will be a key player in deciding whether Congress will act on gun violence prevention, was invited but did not attend. America needs common sense gun reform now, and OFA with partnering organizations will stand to show Rep. Roskam how his constituents feel about his vote on upcoming gun legislation HR 1565. "We hope that Representative Roskam will boldly lead the charge for background checks" said Kathleen Meier, one of the organizers of the vigil.
Speakers addressed the crowd to discuss the importance of expanded background checks and limiting magazine clips for automatic weapons. Rev. Marylou Belcher of the DuPage Unitarian Universalist Church spoke about the effects of gun violence on victims' families. Although increased background checks will not solve the problem of gun violence, she said, "it is important to take this step." The group heard from the father of a gun violence victim. Stephen Young of People for a Safer Society said," I buried my son 17 years ago today. I will not rest until this problem is brought under control." Bill Davis of Arlington Heights read the names of the Sandy Hook victims, and the group responded "We will not forget" after each name was read. Christine Fenno of Moms Demand Action read the "Sandy Hook Promise," a pledge to remember and honor the victims of gun violence.
Joan Brody of Schaumburg said, "90% of Americans support background checks, but 90% of Republican senators voted against them." Another participant, Judy Pitts of Wheaton, said that that US should learn from the experience of other countries which have seen dramatically lower rates of gun violence after enacting reasonable regulation of gun ownership and use.
Participating groups included Northwest Suburbs Organizing for Action (NWSOFA), Lake/McHenry County OFA, Newtown Action Alliance, People for a Safer Society, Citizens for Safer Communities, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, Women's Resource Center Palatine Township Democrats, Northwest Suburban Women Democrats, and Common Sense Reform, and others.
About Organizing For Action - Organizing for Action (OFA) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to advancing the policies that the American people voted for in 2012. In just three months more than 1.4 million volunteers have taken action through Organizing for Action. As a grassroots funded social advocacy group OFA is committed to tipping the scales of power back to the American people instead of special interests in Washington. OFA is working to advance policies like job creation, strengthening the middle class, gun violence prevention, comprehensive immigration reform and measures combating climate change a majority of the American people support. More information at www.barackobama.com