On Monday, January 15, 2018, gun violence survivors and GVP advocates will gather at the State Capitol in Richmond, Virginia to conduct the 26th annual Vigil and Advocacy Day of the Virginia Center for Public Safety and Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence. During the day, participants will acknowledge the nonviolent teachings of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., remember lost loved ones, and lobby their states delegates and senators for tougher gun laws.
It’s a big event. Each MLK Day, radical pro-gun advocates with the Virginia Citizens Defense League also rally their forces at the State Capitol. In decades past, pro-gun attendees would outnumber GVP advocates significantly. That has changed abruptly in the last couple of years, with GVP groups including gathering crowds of 600-700 to participate in MLK day activities and pro-gun organizers straining to reach half that number.
That grassroots push is reflected in the changing composition of the Virginia government. GVP won big in the November 2017 elections in Virginia, with Ralph Northam prevailing in the governor’s race and Chris Hurst, whose fiancee Alison Parker was shot and killed on live television, winning a delegate’s seat. Many ardently pro-NRA legislators lost their seats. Virginia is an exciting Purple state that continues to trend progressive, and that is in no small part because of the work of GVP advocates.
The schedule for the 2018 Vigil and Advocacy Day is as follows:
2PM: Vigil to remember victims of gun violence at the Bell Tower on State Capitol grounds in Richmond. Intersection of 9th and Franklin. Governor-Elect Ralph Northam will be the featured speaker at the vigil.
3PM-5PM: Move inside General Assembly building to speak with Virginia delegates and senators about doing a better job of reducing gun violence in the state.
Please take one of the following two actions:
1) If you live in the Virginia area, and are able to attend the event, please RSVP to Kayla Hicks at firstname.lastname@example.org or (757) 550-0316.
2) If you can’t make it, please share the following link with your family and friends from Virginia on Facebook and encourage them to attend:
After taking one or more of these actions, please click the orange banner at the top of this webpage to report doing so.
Thank you for supporting the good ground work of GVP advocates in a key swing state: Virginia. There is every reason to hope that Virginia’s gun laws are going to change for the better.