Members of the House Democratic Caucus took part in the March For Our Lives events across Virginia. Americans across the nation marched in support of survivors of gun violence and demanded action from legislators.
Delegates Schuyler Vanvalkenburg and Debra Rodman joined the march in Richmond. Rodman called out House Republican inaction on gun reform.
“This year Democrats introduced 70 bills to address gun violence,” Rodman said . “Our efforts fell on deaf ears, but we will keep standing with our constituents and the vast majority of Virginians who are tired of the inaction.”
Delegate Jay Jones participated in the Norfolk event. “It’s amazing that these young people in their time of mourning have started a movement.” Jones said. “Whether it’s seeing the atrocity of a mass shooting, or the everyday tragedies that barely make evening news, gun violence must be addressed, and these motivated citizens are championing the issue.”
In Williamsburg Delegate Mike Mullin spoke at rally. “I stand today with students, parents, teachers, and concerned citizens all across the country who are saying enough is enough.” Mullin, said. “We are marching for common sense gun reform in Virginia and in our country, we are marching for our lives and the lives of our children.”
In Blacksburg, Delegate Chris Hurst spoke at an event organized by Virginia Tech students.
“It is students and young people like you who will bring about the change we need” said Hurst. “The ground beneath us is shaking, you all have started a historic movement. Young people now are more inspired than they even been- seeing all you here today is a testament to the power you have.”
Delegates Kathy Tran, Paul Krizek, Kathleen Murphy, Alfonso Lopez, and Rip Sullivan marched in Washington, DC.
“People have come from across the country to say enough is enough, and we need action on gun safety,” Del. Tran said. “As Virginian legislators we have the responsibility to listen to our constituents and protect our communities. Too many lives have been lost, and we have to act now.”
Democrats in the House and Senate introduced nearly 70 bills aimed at addressing gun reform this year. The Republican-controlled House approved none of them. The House Democratic Caucus’ efforts culminated in the creation of an initiative that will work towards comprehensive policy solutions on public safety, including gun reform.
Organized by the students and their families following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland Florida last month, the march had hundreds of thousands of participants in Virginia, and millions more nationwide.