April 3, 2023 | MFOL Student Activists and Survivors #ProtectKidsNotGuns Rally at Harvard University
Cambridge, MA – On Tuesday, April 4th, gun violence survivors, student activists, and the Harvard and Cambridge community at large will come together in the wake of another school shooting to demand Congressional action to address the gun violence crisis in our country. As long as DC lawmakers continue to prioritize guns over lives, no place and no one is safe. We stand in solidarity with Nashville and all communities traumatized by violence to protect kids NOT guns.
WHERE: Widener Library Steps at Harvard Yard, Cambridge MA
WHEN: 6:00 – 7:00 PM
Congressional Leaders and Officials are invited to attend.
Confirmed speakers include: David Hogg, CJ Hoekegan, Ruquan Brown, Professor Cornell Brooks and Yael Cushman.
March 27, 2023 | SHV Response to Nashville, TN School Shooting
Boston, MA – This morning, three 9 year old students and three staff were shot dead at the Covenant Grade School in Nashville, TN. This is America’s 90th school shooting this year per the K-12 School Shooting Database. The TN shooter, who was a former student and heavily armed with two assault-style rifles and a handgun, was shot dead by the police.
It is once again more clear that we, as a country, are failing to protect our children’s lives. It’s also clear that state gun safety laws matter. In 2021, Tennessee had the 10th-highest gun death rate in the country. Tennessee’s lax laws include no criminal background check required for private gun sales, including for assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines; no age limit for possessing a firearm; no gun owner licensing; and no requirement to report lost and stolen firearms.
Meanwhile, Massachusetts, with its sensible firearms laws, ranks 50th in the nation for gun deaths per capita and had a nine percent drop in gun deaths per capita between 2020 and 2021, according to 2021 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data. Massachusetts has reduced the rate of gun deaths in the Commonwealth by 40% since 1994 and has continually proven that gun safety laws and regulations save lives and countless grief – without banning most guns.
The time for national action is past due. Congressional paralysis to enact meaningful gun safety legislation has resulted in record-high deaths from firearms. According to the Gun Violence Archive, there have already been 129 mass shootings so far this year. Gun violence is the leading cause of death for children and teens for the last two years. While Congress continues to protect the powerful gun lobby and uniquely unregulated gun industry, we are failing to protect our most vulnerable and precious citizens.
March 21, 2023 | Join The Stand for a Safer Tomorrow
BOSTON, MA – 5 years ago, students marched, but the fight isn’t over. On Saturday, March 25th at 1:00 pm at the Parkman Bandstand in the Boston Common, students from Emerson College are organizing a rally to let lawmakers know that they have had enough and that their voices will not go unheard.
“Since 2018, there have been over 380 school shootings reported. When students decided to make a stand five years ago after the Parkland massacre, Stop Handgun Violence (SHV) rallied with them.” said Sonya Coleman, Executive Director of SHV.
“Now gun violence is the leading cause of death for children and teens. We need Congressional action to treat the health crisis of gun violence in our country. We will join the stand for a safer tomorrow.”
Speakers at this event include: Student Activist and Sandy Hook School Survivor CJ Hoekenga; MFOL Organizer from Highland Park Rachel Jacoby; Policy & Advocacy Manager from the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute Pace McConkie; Director of Pediatric Trauma Services at Mass General for Children and co-director of the MGH Gun Violence Prevention Center Dr. Peter Masiakos; Community Organizer of MA Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence Angelica Fontes; Executive Director of Stop Handgun Violence and Board Chair of States United to Prevent Gun Violence Sonya Coleman; and an impact performance by Emerson Transforming Narratives Of Gun Violence Initiative.
February 15, 2023 | Massachusetts Ranks 50th with the Lowest Gun Death Rate in the Nation
New Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Report shows the Commonwealth’s per capita gun deaths dropped by 9 percent
Boston, MA – Massachusetts ranked 50th in the nation for gun deaths per capita and had a 9 percent drop in gun deaths per capita between 2020 and 2021, according to 2021 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) data released today,
“We know gun laws save lives. Massachusetts has consistently remained in the lowest three state rankings,” said John Rosenthal, Founder and Chairman of Stop Handgun Violence, noting that even isolated Hawaii’s 2021 gun death rate ranked higher, at 49th in the US while New Jersey ranked 48th. “As an urban state with the most effective gun safety laws, we treat guns like automobiles including renewable licensing, first in the nation consumer protection regulations for the gun industry and the most comprehensive assault weapon ban. It is no coincidence that once again we have the lowest gun death rate in the nation.”
“The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) reported that 50% of guns traced to crimes in the Commonwealth come from states with lax gun laws; including 40% from neighboring New Hampshire alone. If every state enacted Massachusetts effective gun laws, gun deaths in the Commonwealth would be even lower.”
“Massachusetts has continually proven that gun safety laws and regulations save lives and countless grief – without banning most guns,” Rosenthal said, “Massachusetts’ common sense gun safety model has been enacted on a bipartisan basis and resulted in a 40 percent reduction in the rate of gun deaths in the Commonwealth since 1994. If every other state followed suit, we could prevent over half of the average 45,000 American lives lost to gun violence each year. Gun violence prevention is not theoretical – it’s a choice. If urban Massachusetts can do it, every state can do it.”