ARCW President and CEO Michael Gifford issued the following statement on the Orlando shooting this past weekend:
Unfortunately, mass shootings have become so regular in our country that many of us have become numb to their news.
For so many of us, though, Orlando will forever be seared into our memories never to be forgotten.
This horrific evil act belies understanding. It is simply impossible to make sense of this hatred, especially hatred directed at the LGBT community which has experienced far too much of it. For too long stigma and discrimination, isolation and fear, HIV and hatred have come together to kill LGBT individuals. Dedicated to saving lives everyday, ARCW tries in so many ways to overcome this toxic and lethal combination.
We cannot let this action go without response. While we cannot resolve this tragedy, we can move together to honor the 50 people who perished and help the dozens more injured. We can act in the face of this evil. Whether through thoughts and prayers, attending community vigils or marches, or through financial support let us together stand in strong solidarity with the LGBT community and people of Orlando.
ARCW will be making a $2,500 donation to support the victims and their families and friends. Many of our staff are also making personal contributions. An easy and assured way to give is here.
We all know that money will not resolve this tragedy, but it can help. All of our responses are important. Our solidarity will collectively strengthen our resolve to overcome hatred in our society to usher in a new era of peace, acceptance, inclusion and love.