On Monday October 29, CWLA President & CEO Chris James-Brown issued the following statement on the recent shootings in Pittsburg and related violence:

“CWLA joins the country in mourning the tragedy of this past weekend’s synagogue shooting. Once again, senseless violence strains our comprehension and calls into question what kind of country and society we want to become.

The violence that took the lives of 11 worshipers on Saturday—along with the attempted mail bombings just a few days earlier and the shootings in a Kentucky grocery store—demands a genuine change in our politics and in our hearts.

As a national organization that has worked for 99 years to help ensure that children grow up safely, in loving families and supportive communities, with everything they need to flourish and with connections to their communities, culture, ethnicity, race and language, we know that this moment in our nation’s history is especially troublesome.

We will all need to redouble our efforts to make this vision a reality for all children, especially for those who are most vulnerable because of issues with immigration, education, housing, and health care, or because they live in communities where there is violence and poverty. Dr Martin Luther King once said that, “our lives end the day we become silent about things that matter.”

This matters, and unless every child has an opportunity to flourish in a country that sees that we are all part of the same community, we will never be able to be at our best.

In his first inaugural address, President Abraham Lincoln called on the wisdom of the “better angels of our nature.” That is what we must seek here today, a century and a half later.