FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 17, 2012
Contact: Sami Rahamim, (612) 865-4012 or Heather Martens, (612) 205-7142
MINNEAPOLIS-ST. PAUL -- Sami Rahamim, the 17-year-old son of Accent Signage founder Reuven Rahamim, is in New York City today to meet with New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and others who are survivors of mass shootings.
Reuven Rahamim was among six people who died in a mass shooting this fall at Accent Signage in Minneapolis. The shooter, Andrew Engeldinger, who also killed himself, had serious mental health issues but had obtained a permit to carry a handgun. Engeldinger had purchased 10,000 rounds of ammunition with which to practice shooting.
Survivors of the Aurora, CO, Virginia Tech, and Tucson shootings will meet with Bloomberg today to move from conversation to action in the gun violence prevention effort. Sami Rahamim will attend on behalf of his family and as a representative of Protect Minnesota: Working to End Gun Violence.
"We are honored to be working with Sami," said Heather Martens, executive director of Protect Minnesota. "He has a deep resolve and detemination to spare other families the devastation of losing a loved one to gun violence."
"The horror of what happened in Connecticut has us all reeling. It must never happen again," Martens said. "It is time to get to work on the laws we need to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and those with serious mental illness. First, there needs to be a background check on every gun purchase, not just the 60 percent that are covered now. That is a must."
"What we need now is the kind of leadership President Obama showed last night. We need courageous people like Sami, and we need everyone to step up and help. The NRA lobbyists tried to get rid of Minnesota's background check law last year. That was such an outrageous, extreme effort that many people, including gun owners, are disgusted. Now is the time to do what the vast majority of MInnesotans, including gun owners, agree needs to be done. Get serious about keeping guns out of the wrong hands."
Sami Rahamim connected with Protect Minnesota for the first time at a rally in Minneapolis on Friday in response to the Connecticut shootings. He plans to work closely with Protect Minnesota during the upcoming legislative session.