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Group calls for change outside Fayette Co. Courthouse on Gun Violence Awareness Day

Group calls for change outside Fayette Co. Courthouse on Gun Violence Awareness Day
Published: Jun. 3, 2022 at 11:48 AM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Friday is National Gun Violence Awareness Day.

In Lexington, a group rallied outside the Fayette County Courthouse, calling for change. Victims advocates, faith leaders and politicians. Shooting victims also shared their stories with the crowd.

“It feels like there’s too much happening and not enough laws in place,” said Felice Salmon, a mother who is in favor of stricter gun laws.

Salmon dressed her three children in orange, and held rally signs that reflect the conversations they’re having at home.

“He’s going to be in fourth grade, she’s going to be in first grade next year. That is the age all the Sandy Hook students were. To add another layer, my husband is a physician, so the Tulsa shooting just feels like too much,” Salmon said.

“We’ve got to put away the guns and stop the violence,” shooting survivor April Ballentine said.

People at the podium said condolences aren’t enough, and action must be taken.

“It starts locally, it starts statewide. Spreads across the nation,” community advocate Ricardo Franklin said.

Salmon said she’s in favor of stricter gun laws.

“I would like there to be universal background checks. I would like for there to be more support for students who are having mental health issues,” Salmon said.

Lexington police said the community needs to work with them to continue the fight.

“Silence brings about more violence. This won’t be solved by law enforcement, this won’t be solved by legislation. It has to be solved by the people of the community,” Lexington police lieutenant Shawn Coleman said.

Faith leaders said they officiate too many funerals for shooting victims, and other people there shared a hope that change can happen.

When we spoke to Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday, he said a bipartisan group was “moving quickly” toward proposing new legislation on this issue.

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