After the Newtown Tragedy, TBE members formed a committee: Temple Beth Elohim Congregants to Prevent Gun Violence. After hosting speakers, contacting our politicians, showing up at hearings/meetings, giving money, joining forces with other churches/temples/individuals/coalitions, we are happy to say, "our world is safer". We collectively helped fund inner city peace cafes in Roxbury and worked to achieve a new, stronger gun law in Massachusetts, that was signed by our Governor in August, 2014. Come join us in this effort and stay tuned for more!
Candlelight Vigil of Remembrance and Forum
Wednesday, December 14
December 14 is the 4th anniversary of the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT. In remembrance of the victims at Sandy Hook as well as all victims of gun violence, candlelight vigils and programs will be held throughout the country that evening.
Join TBE Congregants to Prevent Gun Violence at a Candlelight Vigil of Remembrance and Gun Violence Prevention Forum at the First Congregational Church, 2 East Central Street in Natick. The vigil will be at the church's front porch (intersection of Routes 27 & 135) at 6:30 pm. The forum will be held inside the church at 7:00 pm. The forum will feature Dr. Michael Siegel, professor of Community Health Sciences at Boston University, and State Representative David Linsky. Dr. Siegel will share the findings of his recently published report on gun violence as well as the work he is doing with Everytown for Gun Safety, an advocacy group for common sense gun legislation. RSVP below to Bonnie Rosenberg. For those who would like to travel together, carpools will leave from TBE at 5:45 pm. Click here to view the flyer.
Got Peace? Basketball Tournament
The event also included a jobs and education fair. The MA Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence represented by Janet, presented the PEACE MVP award to Chiefs Terry Cunningham (of Wellesley), William Brooks and Wayne Sampson for their critical support to pass the gun bill and their ongoing work helping to get the provisions implemented. Chief Cunningham was also the first MA chief to sign onto the gun manufacturer Do Not Stand Idly By Campaign being run by the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization, (GBIO).
TBE Congregants to Prevent Gun Violence attended the Do Not Stand Idly By Training in Boston that brought over 100 interfaith participants to learn from leaders from the Greater Boston Interfaith Organization, Jewish Community Relations Council, and houses of worship on how to move our nation forward with respect to pushing the market, society and our government to adopt safer gun technology.
TBE Congregants to Prevent Gun Violence joined Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America and Everytown for Gun Safety to commemorate the third anniversary of the Sandy Hook tragedy and honor all victims and survivors of gun violence by accompanying moms, dads, survivors, elected officials, faith leaders, and other community members in the Orange Walk to demonstrate their power and shared commitment to reducing gun violence.
Beth Nast, Jackie Dana, and Nicole Roos at the "Orange Walk".
TBEPGV event on April 16 in memory of Dr. Michael Davidson
JALSA, the Jewish Alliance for Law and Social Action, gave special recognition to the MA Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence at JALSA's annual meeting on Sunday, January 25. As many of you know, JALSA has been a major player in the Coalition and played an instrumental role in making passage of the gun safety bill a reality last summer. Two of our own, Janet Goldenberg and Angus McQuilken, were recognized!
August 13, 2014
Many of you have been tracking the work of TBE Congregants to Prevent Gun Violence and the work of the Mass Coalition in pushing hard for sensible legislation in Massachusetts.
Today was a big day, and a big step forward for reducing gun violence as Governor Deval Patrick signed H. 4376, "An Act Relative to the Reduction of Gun Violence". The bill meets many of the goals our coalition set out to accomplish, including requiring background checks for all private sales, bringing the state into compliance with the Federal NICS background check system, giving chiefs of police discretion in issuing permits for rifles or shotguns, and collecting trace data for guns used in crimes or suicides. The bill also contains meaningful provisions around education for suicide awareness.
While we still have much work to do, when the story is eventually written of how the tide turned on sensible gun laws, the work of faith based communities will be central to that story. And, here in Massachusetts, TBE Congregants to Prevent Gun Violence has played a huge role in moving this coalition forward, through convening community events on violence; phone calls, visits, and emails to legislators; organizing; and most importantly, leading. We have much to be proud of. TBEPGV stands on the shoulders of this incredible community.
We look forward to continuing to build on this work. Yasher Koach to TBEPGV!
Temple Beth Elohim Congregants to Prevent Gun Violence grew out of a Shabbat Reflection following the tragic mass shooting in Newtown, CT, which occured Dec. 14, 2012. Participants were looking for a way to take meaningful action together to reduce the scourge of gun violence in our community and our country– whether caused by crime, accident or suicide. Acting from our values, we have joined together with a growing movement of faith-based and community groups to influence state and national legislation through a post-card campaign, hearings, bringing stakeholder speakers to TBE, educating ourselves and others and supporting innovative efforts, such as fundraising to help with inner city coffeehouses, meeting with our state reps., gathering and speaking at political rallys -- all to reduce gun violence.
Most powerfully, the proposed gun law that was just approved by Mass State Congress in July, 2014 and will appear before the Governor this year, was a direct result of all the strategic and hands on work we have done at TBE alongside collaborative partners such as GBIO, JCRC, JALSA, Mom's Demand Action, to name a few.
TBECPGV is a vocal member of the Massachusetts Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence, convened by former legislative-aide Angus McQuilken, a TBE member, and currently convened by TBE member Janet Goldenberg. We welcome anyone interested in learning about the causes of gun violence and in taking steps to reduce gun violence to join us at our monthly meetings (evening) and/or by participating in actionable steps such as calls, letter writing, joint meetings with other organizations/temples, various forms of political action. To join us, contact: Janet Goldenberg, [email protected], Nicole Roos, [email protected] or Beth Nast,[email protected].