Why We're #WearingOrange on June 2nd

May 30, 2015

Gun violence is a national issue that impacts tens of thousands of Americans each year. Each day 88 people lose their lives to firearms in the United States, and countless other lives are permanently and irrevocably altered. The causes of this epidemic of violence are complex, but there are organizations working around the clock to bring it to an end.

Amnesty International USA is excited to be partnering with Everytown in their Wear Orange campaign in honor of all those affected by gun violence. This campaign is an opportunity to raise awareness of this issue and mobilize people throughout the United States to make a commitment to ending gun violence.

Amnesty International has called attention to gun violence as a human rights issue and works to eradicate it.

The Inspiration

Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed in Chicago, Illinois at the age of 15. She is one of over 11,000 victims of firearm- related homicides in the United States every year.

The Wear Orange campaign was initiated in response to a particular case of gun violence. Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed in Chicago at 15 years old. Although, all cities across the United States are affected by this type of violence, the city of Chicago’s gun violence rate is alarmingly elevated, and has been particularly devastating for the city’s youth.

Motivated by the death of this teen, organizations across the country worked towards creating a national action that would bring attention to the epidemic of firearm-related violence.

Amnesty International USA is joining Everytown, along with religious, domestic violence, mental health and numerous others organizations that have come together to strengthen the impact of this important work.

June 2, 2015 would have been Hadiya’s 18th birthday and it will become a day that signals the dedication and determination of community organizations, survivors and activists throughout the country to bring an end to gun violence.

The Action

In addition to being Hadiya’s 18th birthday, June 2, 2015 marks the first annual National Gun Violence Awareness Day to commemorate her life and all of the other lives cut short by gun violence.

On this day campaign partners welcome anyone who believes there is still work to be done to save lives from gun violence to simply Wear Orange. The action is simple, but the impact is immeasurable.

We ask everyone to use your platforms to call attention to the victims of gun violence and demand that government officials at the local, state and federal level take action to prevent any future lives lost.

For more information, check out the “Wear Orange” campaign at http://wearorange.org/