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PFT President Jerry Jordan on Shooting Outside Willard Elementary

August 31, 2022

PHILADELPHIA—"Again, Philadelphians woke up to news of more devastation wrought by the ongoing scourge of gun violence. A shooting outside of Willard Elementary School rocked the tight-knit community, leaving three hospitalized, including a 17 year old. 

"When PFT staff representative Ray Guzman arrived at Willard before the school day began this morning, to provide support for staff and families, he reported seeing a bullet hole through the school window and a bullet impact on the school door. Individuals he spoke with reported feeling scared and overwhelmed.

"Think of what that means to a kindergartener entering school for the very first time this week. Or to a parent or student who might know one of the victims. This type of trauma is unbearable.

"The devastation wrought at Willard, including those impacted directly and every single member of the community, is emblematic of the ongoing trauma of gun violence in Philadelphia and across the nation. 

"With mid-August numbers totaling at more than 1,400 shootings in Philadelphia in 2022, with 300 fatalities, the impact and horror is too much to bear. Our children, our neighbors, our families deserve so much more. 

"Though there has been significant progress made at the federal level, and there are a host of local efforts in place to address this crisis, it is abundantly clear that we must do more, and we must do it fast. 

"We must also remember that the devastation of gun violence disproportionately impacts Black and brown people. Like so many systems of deep seated racism in this nation, Black and brown people continue to live with, and die by, this crisis at rates that far outpace white people.

"Once again, I offer my wholly insufficient thoughts in the wake of a gun violence tragedy, this time to everyone in the Willard community and each and every person impacted by this tragedy. And once again, I am calling for us to collectively double down on our commitment to ending this deadly crisis."


PFT's recent statements and advocacy on gun violence are below in reverse chronological order:

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