February 1, 2021

Samantha Kupferman, West End Strategy Team; (202) 215-9260

Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence, Coalition to Stop Gun Violence Mark Black History Month With Hope For a Brighter Future

WASHINGTON — The Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence and Coalition to Stop Gun Violence marked the start of Black History Month with the following statement from Executive Director Josh Horwitz:

The public health and economic crises that have unfolded as the COVID-19 pandemic took hold across the country have left none of us unscathed, but have caused extraordinary harm to Black families and communities. The situation has laid bare many of the racial inequities that have long existed, and that – driven by structural racism – have fueled stark disparities in gun violence victimization.

While Black males ages 15 to 34 make up only 2% of the population, recently released CDC data from 2019 find they accounted for 37% of all firearm homicide victims. And although current federal data is sorely lacking, research suggests that the number of people killed by firearms surged in 2020 – including a disproportionate rise in suicide among Black Americans.

Black History Month is a time of reflection for me. It makes me think of my time as a civil rights lawyer, before I joined Stop Gun Violence and believing that with the privilege of getting a law degree came the responsibility of working for ‘Tikkun Olam,’ the Hebrew phrase meaning ‘to repair the world.’

I recognize ending the cycle of gun violence is a complicated challenge everywhere. In Black communities, gun violence is deeply rooted in systemic racism. As a national organization committed to making gun violence rare and abnormal, the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence and Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence are committed to addressing gun violence as a public health issue and advocating for equitable implementation of the policies we support and for equitable programmatic funding. Moreover, we recognize and reaffirm our commitment to supporting the efforts of local advocates, as we know communities should be developing the solutions to address inequities that impact their communities.

Over the past year, CSGV and EFSGV have continued to partner with grassroots organizations across the country, and support the racial equity efforts of our state partners through our Engaging Impacted Communities program. We look forward to continuing to work with communities of color to identify and implement evidence-based policy and programs to reduce gun violence, including supporting the next generation of advocates of color with resources and mentorship to cultivate their advocacy.

Black lives matter. Black history matters. We stand with all of our friends, colleagues and partners in the movement for racial justice, and share their hope that together we can build a brighter future for all Americans, leaving no one behind.

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About the Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence
The Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence is a 501(c)(3) affiliate organization of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, the nation’s oldest gun violence prevention organization. EFSGV uses a public health and equity lens to identify and implement evidence-based policy solutions and programs to reduce gun violence in all its forms and to make gun violence rare and abnormal. EFSGV is the gun violence prevention movement’s premier research intermediary and founder of the Consortium for Risk-Based Firearm Policy, a group of academics and practitioners who collaborate to develop innovative recommendations for policymakers.