NEW YORK – At March for Our Lives events across the country on Saturday, students inspired the nation and demonstrated that they are a force in the gun violence prevention movement, committed to continuing the fight. To further that momentum, Everytown for Gun Safety today announced new resources, including a $1 million grant program, dedicated to spurring student-driven advocacy to end gun violence.
Since the shooting in Parkland, Florida, Everytown has seen membership double for Students Demand Action, an initiative aimed at empowering students to lead on gun safety. Now with more than 33,000 student leaders and new recruits joining every week, Students Demand Action volunteers are motivated to continue organizing after Saturday. Already, dozens of March for Our Lives student grantees have indicated they plan to launch Students Demand Action chapters in their high schools or colleges.
In response, Everytown today announced additional ways it will collaborate with students and provide resources to continue the fight to end gun violence:
- New $1 Million Grant Program: Additional resources for students to organize and run Students Demand Action chapters to make legislative change in all 50 states; applications and details to be rolled out in the coming weeks.
- An Action Plan for the March Forward: Concrete tools for students to organize voter registration drives, take action to pass better state gun laws and continue to call out lawmakers beholden to the gun lobby; this includes policy and organizing calls in the coming days and weeks for students to discuss issues.
- Organizing Events and Advocacy Days: Opportunities for students to participate in one of the more than 200 organizing events planned over the next two weeks aimed at making local electoral plans, working to pass stronger state gun laws or stop dangerous ones, and educating local communities about gun violence prevention; Students will have the opportunity to join 75 legislative meetings with U.S. Senate offices across 41 states in the near term, with additional meetings with federal and state policy makers scheduled on an ongoing basis.
The new resources announced today build on the grants of $5,000 that Everytown made to more than 200 local organizers to support March for Our Lives sibling marches attended by more than 1.7 million people on Saturday. As part of their organizing, students formed committees and engaged with local elected officials, met with survivors of gun violence and planned follow-up days of action at their state capitals for students.
STATEMENT FROM JULIA SPOOR, 16, A HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT IN JENKINTOWN, PENNSYLVANIA, AND FOUNDING MEMBER OF STUDENTS DEMAND ACTION WHOSE FATHER DIED BY GUN SUICIDE:
“On Saturday, we marched. On Monday and every day after, we’ll organize and keep growing this movement until this crisis ends.”
STATEMENT FROM MANJU BANGALORE, A HOUSTON, TEXAS, MARCH FOR OUR LIVES STUDENT ORGANIZER:
“We know this is only the first step and beginnings to a widespread movement that will shake the nation by storm and create lasting, positive change.”
STATEMENT FROM JOHN FEINBLATT, PRESIDENT OF EVERYTOWN FOR GUN SAFETY:
“Following the success of our grant program for student-led March for Our Lives sibling marches this weekend, Everytown wanted to ensure students have the continued resources to keep up the momentum for meaningful legislative change. We’re following the students’ directives and we’re here to be a partner for the next chapter.”
STATEMENT FROM SHANNON WATTS, FOUNDER OF MOMS DEMAND ACTION FOR GUN SENSE IN AMERICA:
“On Saturday, students across the nation proved that they’re passionate, determined and united in a demand for stronger gun laws. This generation of students is going to end this crisis, and we’ll support them every step of the way.”