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'Survivors Empowered' kicks off anti-gun violence tour in Solana Beach

'Survivros Empowered' kicked off a tour around the U.S. to talk gun violence in Solana Beach..jpg
Posted at 10:38 PM, Feb 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-20 01:38:06-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — 'Survivros Empowered' kicked off a tour around the U.S. to talk gun violence in Solana Beach.

About 70 people listened to survivors paint a picture of the trauma behind the violence.

The group said the goal of this tour is to educate lawmakers and the public about gun violence by connecting survivors and organizations.

"It's personal because our daughter was killed in the 2012 shooting at the theater in Aurora, Colorado," said Lonnie Phillips.

Sandy and Lonnie Phillips are behind the tour.

The two shared their own story about how their daughter was killed by gun violence

Jessica Ghawi was a young woman in the sports media industry- helping others in the business.

Her parents hope to also help others, specifically those facing trauma from gun violence.

"She was a fighter and so now we're fighters," said Sandy Phillips.

The couple said they chose to start the tour in San Diego because they are proud of the work the group, "San Diegans for Gun Violence Prevention" has done.

"The whole idea of this tour is to support survivors and to create coalitions of grassroots organizations that are out there that don't know what other organizations are doing in other states," said Sandy Phillips.

The couple also hopes this tour stop sparks change locally.

"We'd like to see a reduction- a complete reduction of gun violence in your city, but we want to see that across the nation,” said Sandy Phillips.

On Friday, Governor Gavin Newsom announced a new bill that would ultimately allow Californians to sue gun manufacturers

"We love what he's doing. He's taking a page out of the playbook -with the sandy hook families just won a $73 million lawsuit against Remington Arms,” said Lonnie Phillips.

They tell 10News they ignore those against the movement to end gun violence.

"If they wanna come after us- bring it on."

The next stop of the couple's 22 stop tour is Atlanta, Georgia.