June 5, 2020 Blog

Wear Orange 2020

June 5, 2020 is National Gun Violence Awareness Day—also known as Wear Orange—a day when gun violence prevention supporters and advocates across the country wear orange to honor the victims of gun violence and show support for the gun safety movement. 

Like everything else, Wear Orange will look different this year as in person gatherings to honor victims and survivors and demand action won’t be possible. But the murders of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and so many others along with the COVID-19 pandemic have made it clear that the fight against gun violence and the systemic inequities that make our Black and brown communities more vulnerable to both the coronavirus pandemic and the gun violence epidemic is more important than ever. 

So we’re asking you to join us in wearing orange on June 5th in solidarity with the victims and survivors of gun violence and everyone who believes this crisis is preventable. Here’s what you can do: 

  • Wear something orange! 
  • Take a photo of yourself and any family or household members in your orange attire. 
  • Share the photo on social media with a sentence about why you #WearOrange. Ex: I #WearOrange because I believe that gun violence is preventable.
  • Use the hashtag #WearOrange and tag @wagunresponsib on Twitter or @AllianceforGunResponsibility on Facebook and Instagram. 
  • If you don’t have social media, you can email a photo to [email protected] and we will share them from our accounts! 

Wear Orange was started in 2013 after 15-year-old Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed in Chicago just one week after she performed at President Obama’s second inauguration. After her death, her friends and family chose to wear orange on her birthday, June 2, to honor Hadiya and the tens of thousands of lives lost to gun violence every year. They chose orange because it was her favorite color and it is the color hunters wear to protect themselves from gunfire. Since then, the gun violence prevention movement has carried on their efforts by wearing orange the first Friday in June. 

Last year, hundreds of people gathered at Sam Smith Park in Seattle for a Wear Orange event to remember. Manny and Patricia Oliver, whose son Joaquin was killed in Parkland, travelled to Seattle for the event and Manny created a mural to honor his son and all victims of gun violence. 

We were so lucky to have Patricia and Manny participate in our virtual luncheon on June 1st this year. You can see a recording of that event soon.

In this time of uncertainty and division, we hope you’ll join us in this display of solidarity.

— Kristen Ellingboe is the Communications Manager with the Alliance for Gun Responsibility.