A week after the deadly Monterey Park massacre killed 11 people and wounded nine others, youth activists are calling for gun safety law reforms on Saturday.
Activists held a rally called “March for Our Lives” in downtown Los Angeles to honor the victims while calling for the strengthening of gun laws.
“Gun violence is a uniquely American problem,” said Shaddi Ahmadzadeh, one of the rally’s organizers. “We shouldn’t have to wake up in the morning and fear that our community is torn because of a mass gun event.”
Activists say the frequency of mass shootings following Monterey Park, including seven people killed in Half Moon Bay on Jan. 23 and three people killed in Beverly Crest on Saturday, are unacceptable.
“Instead of a day where we celebrate the Lunar New Year with our friends and family, instead it’s spent texting and calling to see if they’re okay,” said Anna Pham, a rally organizer.
The city of Monterey Park is offering free drop-in counseling services to residents who were affected by the shooting.
“On select days through Feb. 3, the city will have multilingual caseworkers and counselors stationed at the Monterey Park Bruggemeyer Library at 318 S. Ramona Avenue,” officials said.
Services will be available on Tuesday and Wednesday from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. and next Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Counselors are also available at the Langley Senior Center located at 400 W. Emerson Avenue in Monterey Park. Services will be offered from Jan. 30 to Feb. 3 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
On Saturday from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., in-person legal support services will be available in the library’s Friends Room.
The Asian Pacific American Bar Association, the Asian Pacific American Women Lawyers Alliance and other Asian American and regional bar association representatives will be providing pro bono services, the city said.
L.A. Mayor Karen Bass served as Grand Marshall of the Golden Dragon Lunar New Year parade in Chinatown on Saturday afternoon.
“Well, my feelings are mixed,” said Bass. “I’m certainly happy to be here and celebrate with the community, but my heart and my mind are thinking about Monterey Park and what happened just a week ago. But I also think it’s so important to not let tragedy call everything to a halt. This is a tradition that goes back generations and I’m really proud to be here today. I think the parade is a part of the resilience of the Asian community.”