Community holds vigil, rally in wake of weekend mass shootings

Posted: Updated:
WESTFIELD -

About 200 people filled a Westfield Park Monday evening to remember the victims of the weekend mass shootings in Texas and Ohio – and to call for change to gun laws.

Over 30 people were killed in two shooting incidents over the weekend. The organizers of the rally read the names of the victims while fathering in Mindowaskin Park and placed a candle on the ground for each of them.

“A call to action would be a greater act of respect than simply extending thoughts and prayers,” said Lydia Kaplan of the group Westfield 2020.

RELATED: Gun reform groups call for change after yet another mass shooting 
RELATED: New Jersey enacts 3 gun violence intervention laws 

Westfield 2020 is a grassroots group that organized the rally. They are calling for federal background checks on all who buy guns, as well as a ban on assault weapons. The group also encouraged all in attendance to call their lawmakers and demand change.

“We need to bring our change, our thoughts and prayers, our heartbreak and rallying cries to the ballot box,” says Westfield Mayor Shelly Brindle.

Earlier in the day acting Gov. Shelia Oliver signed a package of gun violence intervention bills. The bills will establish community-based nonviolence and gun violence prevention program.

More information about Westfield 2020 can be found on the group’s website.

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