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Dear Friend,

Today, at 10:00 am, students across California and across the nation will walk out of their classrooms.  For 17 minutes they will honor the lives of the 17 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students who were murdered one month ago, and they will protest in support of gun reform.

I will stand in solidarity with this incredible force of students by walking out of the State Capitol at 10:00 am. I encourage you to participate if you are able and to tweet #EnoughIsEnough in support of this student-led movement for gun reform.

Like many of you, I am so impressed by the many young people who have been activated by the issue of gun violence. But I’m not surprised. I’ve been working directly with youth for over 20 years – the caliber of leadership I’ve witnessed in this generation is what inspired me to write legislation that gives high schoolers a vote on their school boards and to co-write legislation with incarcerated teens.   

Right now our student leaders are calling on adults to do more to protect them from gun violence. Last week representatives from Sandy Hook Promise visited schools throughout the Bay Area to discuss their gun violence prevention programs. My office was honored to facilitate these meetings, and we are working to connect schools across the state to resources for gun violence prevention.

You can support the work that Sandy Hook Promise is doing by sharing this petition to call on governors in other states to pass ERPO laws which protect children from gun violence. We already have an ERPO (extreme risk protection order) law in California, and my work to increase access to mental health services, particularly in schools, can help schools and communities identify individuals who are extreme risks.

Let’s empower students by creating school environments that are safe, supportive, and provide all students an opportunity to shape their future. Our students today are going to change the world.

In solidarity,

Tony Thurmond