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Brady Marks Wear Orange Day, Underscores Gun Violence Prevention is a Racial Justice Issue

Washington, D.C., June 5, 2020 - Today, Brady joins with activists, survivors, and all Americans in recognizing National Gun Violence Awareness Day, or Wear Orange Day, a day dedicated to focusing attention on our nation’s gun violence epidemic. Every day in the United States, over 300 people are shot, 103 of whom are killed. The United States is the only industrialized nation that faces these levels of gun violence, underscoring that this is a uniquely American but a solvable problem. Brady remains committed to finding and enacting these solutions and ending gun violence. Brady calls on all Americans to join in this effort. It will take all of us.

Brady President Kris Brown shared:

“National Gun Violence Awareness Day is a reminder to us all that our nation’s gun violence epidemic rages every day whether or not it is talked about or reported on. Celebrated on the first Friday in June, today, and events this weekend, honors those who have died from gun violence and calls us all to action. We #WearOrange today to honor this on-going effort and to honor all survivors and victims of gun violence, in particular Hadiya Pendleton. Hadiya was killed in January 2013 in Chicago, just one week after performing at Barack Obama’s second inauguration. She was fifteen years old. Brady joins in today’s action in her memory and with the clear call that we must end this violence. Black children and teens are eight times more likely to die from gun homicide than their white peers. We must stand in solidarity with Black and Brown Americans in opposing systemic racism and in addressing the deadly cocktail of firearms and racism.”

The Team ENOUGH Executive Council noted:

“Our generation has borne the brunt of America’s gun violence epidemic. From repeated school and mass shootings to daily violence in our homes and communities, young people have seen the results of inaction and political cowardice. We have grown up in a world in which gun violence is a question of ‘when’ not ‘if,’ and where minority communities, particularly Black Americans, are disproportionately affected by this violence. Just this year, we have seen increasing aggression from white gun extremists and the racially motivated murder of Ahmaud Arbery by white men. We have seen continued violence against and murder of our black, transgender siblings. We have seen police violence and state violence against peaceful protestors. We know that stopping this violence requires addressing systemic racism in our country and wholesale change to the status quo. Team ENOUGH reiterates that Black lives matter and that our country has not always lived up to that truth. Furthermore, Team ENOUGH joins with survivors and activists across the country committed to creating a safer and more equitable country.”

Gun violence in the United States takes many forms. Across the country 114,328 people are shot each year, and over 37,600 people will die from gun violence. These incidents include domestic violence, suicide, unintentional shootings, school shootings, police-involved shootings, community violence, and mass shootings — which, though they often attract the most media attention, are undeniably horrific, and leave permanent physical, emotional, economic scars on survivors and communities, comprise roughly one percent of all gun violence each year. On Wear Orange Day we must acknowledge this complex reality if we are to solve this crisis.


Facts about gun violence in the United States:

Suicide

  • Suicide by gun accounts for the majority of gun deaths in the U.S., 60 percent of all gun deaths in the U.S. are suicides
  • Every year, 22,926 people die from gun suicide
  • Every year, 3,554 people survive an attempted gun suicide
  • Every day, 63 people die from gun suicide
  • Every day, 10 people survive an attemped gun suicide
  • While less than 10 percent of all suicide attempts are fatal, 90 percent of those involving a firearm end in death.
  • Access to a gun in the home increases the risk of death by suicide by 300 percent.


Domestic Violence

  • Every 16 hours, a woman is shot and killed by a current or former intimate partner
  • Every year, 529 women are killed by their husband or male dating partner
  • 54 percent of mass shootings are related to domestic or family violence
  • Women are five times more likely to be killed by an abusive intimate partner when her abuser has access to a firearm during an incident of domestic violence.


Unintentional Shootings

  • Every day, 90 people are shot unintentionally, and one person is killed from an unintentional shooting
  • Approximately 478 people die every year from unintentional shootings
  • Unintentional shootings are often facilitated by improperly stored guns in the home, part of what is termed family fire.
  • Every day, 8 children and teens are unintentionally injured or killed due to an unlocked or unsupervised gun in the home.


Police Violence


We must also acknowledge that Americans do not experience gun violence equally. While gun violence affects every community, it is an indisputable fact that gun violence disproportionately affects Black and Brown communities. To look at the full picture of gun violence in America accurately requires this critical lens. In the United States, where you live often determines if you live — and we cannot accept that. According to CDC data, Black people are 10 times more likely to die from gun homicide as white people. That same data shows us that black youth under 19 fare even worse; they are fourteen times more likely than their white counterparts to die from gun homicide. The life expectancy for Black men was reduced by four years because of gun violence. Polling shows that 57 percent of African Americans personally know someone who has been shot either accidentally or intentionally, compared to 43 percent of white respondents. The effects of this reality are pernicious, including lifelong trauma and stress that tangibly and negatively affect Black and Brown communities and individuals. It is impossible to discuss gun violence without addressing this reality, as any real solutions must account for and seek to correct this systemic inequality.

Brady President Kris Brown concluded:

“We cannot ever allow ourselves to become silent or complacent in the face of this on-going public health and safety crisis. These figures are not numbers. They are people. They are families who have lost a loved one. They are communities that will carry scars and trauma that will never heal. On National Gun Violence Awareness Day, we must be clear-eyed as to the scope of this crisis and resolute in our dedication to ending it.”

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Brady has one powerful mission — to unite all Americans against gun violence. We work across Congress, the courts, and our communities with over 90 grassroots chapters, bringing together young and old, red and blue, and every shade of color to find common ground in common sense. In the spirit of our namesakes Jim and Sarah Brady, we have fought for over 45 years to take action, not sides, and we will not stop until this epidemic ends. It’s in our hands.


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