Holyoke joins ‘Wear Orange Weekend’ to bring awareness to gun violence

Hampden County

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – The mayor of Holyoke is bringing attention to gun violence by joining a national movement this weekend, where people are encouraged to wear orange.

The front lawn of Holyoke City Hall was filled with people wearing orange. Friday’s event kicked off Wear Orange Weekend, a campaign that advocates for what organizers say are common sense gun laws.

Stephanie Strand of the Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense organization told 22News, “We stand with victims of gun violence and we stand for those who have been killed by gun violence.”

Wear Orange Weekend begins every year on the first Friday in June. It began in honor of Hadiya Pendleton – a Chicago teen who was shot and killed just one week after performing at President Obama’s 2nd inaugural parade.

Orange was Pendleton’s favorite color.

“It’s important for us to remember that we are the majority,” Strand expressed. “When we come together at events like this, it kind of helps give us concrete evidence.”

According to the latest Gallup Poll, nearly 60 percent of Americans favor stricter gun control. Still, those numbers vary among party lines. Studies show 9 in 10 Democrats favor stricter guns laws compared to just 31 percent of Republicans.

A Holyoke woman who is a victim of gun violence said it’s important to come together. “Even though their experiences are different, even though their trauma is different there’s shared language there.”

Just this week in Boston, state legislators recognized gun control, by way of a House resolution.

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