JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Jacksonville moms fighting against gun violence came together in their orange attire Friday for Gun Violence Awareness Day.
The Florida chapter of Moms Demand Action held a unity walk to honor victims and survivors of gun violence and continue efforts to support prevention practices nationwide.
“We want our community and city leaders to know we had enough of the gun violence in our communities. We’re doing our part to raise awareness we have solutions to addressing gun violence in our city. And we need our leaders to act,” Latasha Hobbs said.
The mother of Maurice Hobbs, who was killed in 2017 days before his 18th birthday, said she wants to continue bringing awareness to gun violence.
“This journey is very hard. It never gets easier. It’s been 2318 days since my son was murdered. As I was driving to pick him up. Love is what keeps us going support is what keeps us going and when you hurt this much, you have nothing but love to give,” Hobbs said.
Still, no arrests have been made.
2022 was one of the deadliest years on record for gun violence in the United States, according to the Wear Orange campaign, which demands an end to what it calls a public health crisis.
Moms Demand Actions volunteer Katie Hathaway said the organization knows a change needs to come.
“I watched the news, I see the cycle of news every day, the violence in our city and across the nation. We have a gun violence epidemic. 120 Americans are shot and killed every day, hundreds were shot and wounded and oftentimes not even making the news. So it’s very important,” Hathaway said.
Hathaway has hopes that this effort is a step closer to making a difference and decreasing gun violence.
“We have conversations, we pass out gun locks, we remind parents to lock up their firearms in the home so kids can access them. And we try to advocate for funding on the ground, those organizations that are in the community most impacted too because we know they’re doing the vital everyday work to prevent these shootings,” Hathaway said.