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City of Buffalo Press Releases

Posted on: September 14, 2022

Mayor Byron W. Brown to Attend White House “United We Stand” Summit

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Buffalo, NY - On Thursday, September 15, Mayor Byron W. Brown is scheduled to attend President Biden’s “United We Stand” Summit at the White House to counter violent attacks motivated by hate. The Summit is part of a promise Biden made when he came to Buffalo, New York in the aftermath of the May 14th mass shooting at the Tops on Jefferson Avenue, that claimed the lives of ten innocent people and injured three others.

Mayor Brown stated, “On a recent trip to Buffalo, President Biden made a pledge to our community that he would do everything he can to bring about change in the aftermath of the racial motivated mass shooting at the Tops on Jefferson Avenue in Buffalo, and I thank him for hosting the ‘United We Stand’ summit, where like-minded individuals can share best practices, re-connect, and put forward a shared vision for a more united America.”

Since taking office, the Biden Administration has consistently taken steps to counter hate-motivated violence -- from signing the bipartisan COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, to releasing the first-ever National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism, to signing the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the most significant legislation in three decades to reduce gun violence.

 The United We Stand Summit will bring together heroes from across America who are leading historic work in their communities to build bridges and address hate and division, including survivors of hate-fueled violence. The summit will include a bipartisan group of federal, state, and local officials, civil rights groups, faith and community leaders, technology and business leaders, law enforcement officials, former members of violent hate groups who now work to prevent violence, gun violence prevention leaders, media representatives, and cultural figures. It will feature a keynote speech from President Biden as well as inclusive, bipartisan panels and conversations on countering hate-fueled violence, preventing radicalization and mobilization to violence, and fostering unity.

 In the days after the Tops mass shooting, Mayor Brown, in partnership with family members of the victims and other community leaders, said what happened in Buffalo can’t be forgotten and the tragedy must prompt reform through education, discussions, and legislation. The United We Stand Summit is just another one of the ways the horrific event on May 14th is bringing about change. Other small steps of progress included:

  • New York State enacted new gun legislation in early June. The bills included banning anyone under the age of 21 from buying a semi-automatic rifle, strengthening red flag laws and allowing only law enforcement to buy body armor
  • Also in June, the House voted to raise the age for buying semi-automatic rifles to 21 and passed an assault weapon ban late July
  • Additionally, New York State made an investment of $50 million for housing and social services to help residents repair their homes and pay their bills

As President Biden said in Buffalo after the horrific mass shooting earlier this year, in the battle for the soul of our nation, “we must all enlist in this great cause of America.” The United We Stand Summit will present an important opportunity for Americans of all races, religions, regions, political affiliations, and walks of life to take up that cause together.

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