WATERBURY, Conn. – In the wake of the recent mass shootings at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California, Cielo Vista mall in El Paso, Texas, and in Dayton, Ohio, Congresswoman Jahana Hayes (CT-05) released the following statement on gun violence and white nationalism in America:

“Over the past few days, three cities in the United States have become the latest victims of America’s gun violence epidemic. Gilroy, El Paso, and Dayton are in very different parts of the country. But, today, they share the same tragic fate of having to make sense of an entirely senseless act, while grieving for those who will never return home.”

“These cities have been added to an ever-growing monument to inaction. When we lost 26 members of our own community, we hoped we would be the last ones to carry this terrible burden. Unfortunately, that has been far from the case.”

“Let us call these recent shootings what they are: acts of white nationalism, fueled by an increase in racist and xenophobic rhetoric.”

“The problem of gun violence and the problem of white nationalism are inextricably linked, and these tragedies will continue until we put an end to both.”

In the 217 days this year, there have been more than 33,000 shooting incidents in the United States of America, resulting in almost 10,000 deaths and nearly 20,000 injuries. Included in that number are the three murdered in Gilroy, 20 killed in El Paso, and nine dead in Dayton.