Families of Uvalde victims, Sen. Gutierrez rally in Austin for Gun Safety Advocacy Day

The Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence and its partners are holding a day of advocacy

AUSTIN – The Texas state capitol will be filled with gun violence prevention advocates Tuesday to appeal to elected officials set to make gun law changes.

This comes just days after the nine-month anniversary of the Robb Elementary shooting, where 19 children and two teachers were killed.

The Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence is made up of several organizations across the country, they’re coming together to put on the day of legislative advocacy, hoping to reach our elected leaders and get them to support changes to gun laws.

”We have this stain on our state of Texas, which was just the horrors that occurred in Uvalde,” Molly Bursey, the legislative lead for the Texas chapter of Moms Demand Action, said.

Bursey says her child was in the 4th grade in New Braunfels when the shooting at Robb Elementary happened last May.

“He got to go to 5th grade,” she said.

Bursey has been with Moms Demand Action, a group fighting against gun violence, since 2016.

Her role is to meet with elected leaders. Bursey says she’s hopeful change could happen during this legislative session.

Bursey’s group, along with others like Lives Robbed, a nonprofit started by four of the Robb victims’ families, will rally at the state capitol Tuesday to fight for gun law changes.

It’s something state Senator Roland Gutierrez has been doing for weeks now.

“While there are many many issues that are important to us all, nothing is as important as our children. And so we’re asking this Governor and everybody in this building to do something,” Gutierrez said.

Their main asks: raise the age to purchase an assault-style weapon and increase background checks.

“Their counter-argument is that these young men will always find another way to get it, well let’s make it a little bit harder,” Gutierrez said.

The rally will also include gun violence survivors like 10-year-old Caitlyne Gonzales, who lost her best friend, Jackie Cazares, at Robb Elementary and was in a classroom across from the gunman.

“Because we need to make our voice heard,” Gonzales said. “Like why it’s important to change gun laws.”

KSAT 12 reporter Leigh Waldman emailed Governor Greg Abbott’s office for a statement on the rally Monday afternoon, no response has been sent at this time.

The rally will start at noon Tuesday on the Southside steps, it’ll last an hour before the group splits up and heads into every one of the offices in the capitol to meet with representatives and senators.

About the Authors

Leigh Waldman is an investigative reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.

Gavin Nesbitt is a photojournalist and video editor who joined KSAT in September 2021. He has traveled across the great state of Texas to film, conduct interviews and edit many major news stories, including the White Settlement church shooting, Hurricane Hanna, 2020 presidential campaigns, Texas border coverage and the Spurs.

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