Sandy Hook Promise Statement on the Use of Graphic Images and Materials to Illustrate AR-15 Impact  — Sandy Hook Promise | #schoolsaftey


This morning, The Washington Post published a story detailing the profound and distressing effects of large-capacity, semi-automatic weapons. The narrative highlights the devastating impact these weapons have had on victims and the unsettling reality faced by survivors. While the presented materials are undeniably disturbing, and should cause outrage, we believe this is also a time to channel emotion into actionable measures to prevent further tragedy.  

Mark Barden, co-founder and CEO of Sandy Hook Promise Action Fund, and father of Daniel, who was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy on December 14, 2012, also shared his reaction:  

“We, firsthand, understand the devastating consequences of highly lethal weapons in mass shootings. Limiting civilian access to these high-powered firearms unequivocally saves lives. The Washington Post’s portrayal of the aftermath underscores the undeniable consensus – these inherently lethal instruments, designed to decimate the human body, have no place in our homes and communities. We support legislation prohibiting the sale and transfer of high-capacity magazines and assault weapons, including the AR-15.” 

Nicole Hockley, co-founder and CEO of Sandy Hook Promise, and mother of Dylan, who was killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy on December 14, 2012, issued the following statement in response: 

“As someone deeply committed to gun violence prevention after my son was killed in a mass shooting, I want to emphasize the importance of respecting the families of victims and survivors by refraining from using graphic images and materials. However, it is vital for our nation to confront the harsh reality of gun violence impact head-on. Despite disheartening statistics, each number represents a person, often a child, with hopes, dreams, and loved ones who cherished them. This is a reminder not to give up hope. Federal research and our own work in communities nationwide has proven that gun violence is preventable.” 

Lauren Levin, Chief Advocacy Officer of Sandy Hook Promise Action Fund, advised on how these policies can better protect our communities

“High-powered, semi-automatic firearms are designed to carry out mass casualties and that is why they are the weapon of choice in so many school shootings and tragedies. Laws that limit the sale and transfer of these semi-automatic weapons and high-capacity magazines have proven to work at the federal and state level to significantly reduce mass shootings and save lives. It is imperative that Congress act to protect our children and communities by adopting bipartisan policy to regulate these deadly firearms.” 

Gun violence is preventable and the overwhelming majority of American voters want elected officials to take legislative action such as these regulations to protect our children and communities. Sandy Hook Promise encourages members of Congress to find common ground so they can enact policies that will save more lives.  

We ask that voters sign our petition today to make highly lethal weapons illegal: TELL CONGRESS: MAKE HIGH-CAPACITY GUN MAGAZINES ILLEGAL! (sandyhookpromise.org) 

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Sandy Hook Promise (SHP) envisions a future where all children are free from school shootings and other acts of violence. As a national nonprofit organization, SHP’s mission is to educate and empower youth and adults to prevent violence in schools, homes, and communities. Creators of the life-saving, evidence-informed “Know the Signs” prevention programs, SHP teaches the warning signs of someone who may be in crisis, socially isolated, or at-risk of hurting themselves or others and how to get help. SHP also advances school safety, youth mental health, and responsible gun ownership at the state and federal levels through nonpartisan policy and partnerships. SHP is led by several family members whose loved ones were killed in the tragic mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012.   

Media Contact:

Aimee Thunberg | [email protected] | 646-761-5579



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