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June 2, 2023: Gun Violence Awareness Day

WHEREAS, Americans are 25 times more likely to die by gun homicide than people in other high-income countries; and,

WHEREAS, protecting public safety in the communities they serve is among a legislator’s highest responsibilities; and,

WHEREAS, we must remain focused on finding solutions to gun violence like the recent universal background checks and safe storage legislation that will make a real difference in people’s lives;

WHEREAS, in January 2013, Hadiya Pendleton was tragically shot and killed at age 15. To recognize her birthday in June, people across the United States have annually recognized the first Friday in June as National Gun Violence Awareness Day by wearing orange in tribute to Hadiya Pendleton and other victims of gun violence and the loved ones of these victims; and,

WHEREAS, the idea was inspired by a group of Hadiya’s friends, who asked their classmates to commemorate her life by wearing orange; they chose this color because hunters wear orange to announce themselves to other hunters when out in the woods, and orange is a color that symbolizes the value of human life; and, 

WHEREAS, anyone can join this campaign by pledging to wear orange on June 2, the first Friday in June of this year, to help raise awareness about gun violence; and, 

WHEREAS, by wearing orange on June 2, 2023, Americans will raise awareness about gun violence, honor the lives of gun violence victims and survivors, renew our commitment to reduce gun violence, pledge to do all we can to keep firearms out of the wrong hands, and encourage responsible gun ownership to help keep our children safe;

NOW, THEREFORE, I, Gretchen Whitmer, governor of Michigan, do hereby proclaim June 2, 2023, as Gun Violence Awareness Day in Michigan.