Gun safety advocate Shannon Watts speaking with attendees at a press conference for Moms Demand Action in Phoenix, Arizona, earlier this year. (Credit: Gage Skidmore, Flickr)

This Mother’s Day, moms across the country don’t want flowers or cards – they want Congress to ban assault weapons.

That’s according to Shannon Watts, founder of grassroots gun safety group Moms Demand Action, who announced in a guest post on Katie Couric Media that volunteers nationwide will come together for Mother’s Day of Action this Saturday – the day before Mother’s Day – to rally, hand out flyers, phonebank and march to demand a ban on assault weapons. 

“Our children’s lives matter more than your assault rifle,” Watts wrote, calling out far-right lawmakers who cite the Second Amendment to justify the ownership of military-style assault rifles. “And we’ll continue to do what it takes to get these weapons of war out of our communities.”

This Mother’s Day will mark one year since the deadly shooting at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York. On top of that, May 24 will mark one year since the elementary school shooting that killed 19 children and two teachers in Uvalde, Texas. And gun violence has only gotten worse in 2023, with over 170 mass shootings taking place this year. 

“Community after community is left mourning in the uniquely American hell the gun industry has created by selling ever-deadlier guns to as many people as possible and then encouraging them to shoot first and ask questions later,” Watts wrote.

Watts founded Moms Demand Action after the Sandy Hook school shooting over ten years ago. Like countless mothers across the country, she was afraid for her children’s safety at school and wanted to do something about it by inviting other mothers to join her in standing up to the gun lobby. In the past ten years, she has worked with countless mothers whose children have fallen victim to gun violence – and Mother’s Day of Action comes shortly after Bereaved Mother’s Day, which occurs every year on the first Saturday in May to honor mothers who have lost their children. 

Moms Demand Action chapters from all across the country have begun to announce events they are hosting, from a human chain around an elementary school in Massachusetts to a rally in front of a town hall in New Jersey. Everytown for Gun Safety, a partner group of Moms Demand Action, posted a complete guide for event organizers on its website, which includes a form to help organizers register their events.

Moms Demand Action volunteers have helped to pass hundreds of state-level gun safety laws, and recently stood behind Governor Jay Inslee as he signed a bill that made Washington the tenth state to ban assault weapons. Still, Watts said that it’s time for federal action against assault weapons, “because the value of our children’s lives will always be greater than the value of an AR-15, and mothers never give up.”

To join Mother’s Day of Action, text FEDUP to 644-33. Or to find an event near you, visit the Moms Demand Action Find an Event page.