The Million Mom March is a grassroots movement started by Donna Dees-Thomases after the tragic shooting in Granada Hills, California on August 10, 1999. Dees-Thomases started a website and recruited thousands of other concerned mothers to organize a rally in Washington, D.C. to call for more sensible gun laws.
More than 750,000 people marched in Washington, D.C. on Mother’s Day, May 14th, 2000. An estimated 250,000 marched in satellite rallies in more than 70 different cities around the country. After the march, Million Mom March was reorganized into chapters around the country. In 2001, the organization united with Handgun Control, Inc. and the Center to Prevent Handgun Violence to form the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the Brady Center, but their chapters have continued to advocate for gun violence prevention legislation and social change.
August 10, 1999: Kids Shot in Granada Hills, Felt in Short Hills
A white supremacist stormed a day camp in Granada Hills, California, and fired 70 shots, wounding five people, including three children. Outraged, Donna Dees-Thomases -- a Short Hills, New Jersey mom and part-time comedy publicist -- applied for a permit to march on Washington, D.C. on Mother’s Day, 2000. She called it “The Million Mom March.” In less than a month, Donna and five of her female friends (plus one dad) created the foundation of what would become the largest, most publicized gun violence prevention event in American history. Their mission: to find a few good moms in each of the 435 congressional districts over the next nine months. Their rallying cry: "Looking for a Few Good Moms to Mobilize for Common Sense Gun Laws."
September 6, 1999: Labor of Love
Donna and 24 other founding members, wearing Million Mom March (MMM) t-shirts held a packed, Labor Day news conference in Manhattan to launch the MMM website. The mothers challenged their elected officials to pass sensible gun laws over the course of the next nine months. “100 Blacks in Law Enforcement Who Care” became the first official endorser of the Million Mom March.
September 10, 1999: Apple Pies and Time-Out Chairs
Moms mobilized on the Internet; many called their members of Congress for the first time. They offered photo ops, and passed out apple pies to some Congressional leaders, while promising to put others in time-out chairs. Across the country, Million Mom March leaders sprang up, including Spring in upper-peninsula Michigan, Renee in Kentucky, Dana in Florida, Hilary in New York, Greta and Elizabeth in Massachusetts, and Julie in Ohio.
October 11, 1999: The Bell Rings in Oklahoma
Donna invited Mary Leigh Blek, president of the new post-Columbine organization called The Bell Campaign, to join her in Oklahoma at the request of a Tulsa doctor to talk to mothers concerned about gun violence. Immediately after, the 65 mothers in attendance formed the Oklahoma Million Mom March event planning committee.
October 20, 1999: A Mom’s Prayer Answered
The Rev. Jim Atwood from the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence volunteered to be the religious coordinator for the Million Mom March. He set out to secure 700 religious endorsements, a goal which he eventually exceeded.
October 31, 1999: On the Record with The New York Times
A suburban Pennsylvania mom and lawyer, Nancy, signed up to be the Pennsylvania coordinator after reading about the Million Mom March in the regional edition of The New York Times. Nancy ultimately signed up 100 buses from her state for the March. She currently serves as President of the Ceasefire PA board.
November 1, 1999: The Widows and the Wounded Newsweek’s
Anna Quindlen published details of the march, resulting in the formation of the Oregon Million Mom March and numerous other March organizers across the country. Oregon organizers Lisa and Kathy used the March as a hook for gathering names and volunteers for the 2000 Oregon referendum to close the gun show loophole, spearheaded by Oregon Ceasefire.
December 6, 1999: Shameless Plugs on the ‘Today Show’
Million Mom March organizers stood outside the Today Show with Al Roker holding signs giving information about their meetings across the country. By January 2000 the MMM would have the endorsements of hundreds of organizations, including the national PTA and the League of Women Voters.
February 14, 2000: Moms, Ministers, and Mayors
Denver Mayor Wellington unveiled the Mayor’s Wall of Death, which depicted America’s gun violence epidemic. He endorsed the newly formed Colorado Million Mom March committee. Colorado moms would join SAFE Colorado in its successful initiative to close the gun show loophole in 2000 by referendum. A week later the U.S. Conference of Mayors strongly endorsed the MMM.
February 29, 2000: 1st Grader Fatally Shoots Another 1st Grader
The Flint, Michigan death of a first grader shot by another first grader grabbed national headlines, in part due to the outraged Michigan moms. The Michigan Million Mom March vowed to keep Kayla’s memory alive until their elected officials took action. They called on U.S. Senator Spencer Abraham and put him on notice: he would either stand up to the gun lobby, or he would be defeated in his next election. He was defeated.
March 1, 2000: Million Mom March National Office Opens
The Million Mom March National office relocated from Donna's home office to rented office space in DC. An MMM steering committee was formed, which included members of the Bell Campaign, Handgun Control, Inc. (now the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence), the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, and PAX (now part of the Brady Center). The Million Mom March now had organizers in every state.
March 8, 2000: MMM Delaware Appears on the ‘Rosie O’Donnell Show’
A Delaware Million Mom March organizer appeared on the “Rosie O’Donnell Show” to talk about the Mother’s Day march. Thousands of supporters signed up. This would be the first of several Rosie appearances to promote the Million Mom March.
April 3, 2000: Arizona Passes Shannon’s Law
Arizona Gov. Jane Dee Hull signed Shannon’s Bill into law, which prohibits firing shots randomly into the air. The family of Shannon Smith, for whom the bill is named, worked closely with Arizonans for Gun Safety and the newly formed organizers from Million Mom March Arizona.
April 11, 2000: Maryland Passes Childproof Handgun Bill
Maryland Gov. Parris Glendening signed into law a childproof handgun bill (sponsored by MAHA) and credited Maryland Million Mom March Coordinator Carole Price and her husband John for turning their grief over the death of their son into action. President Bill Clinton attended the bill signing in Annapolis.
April 24, 2000: Easter Monday Mayhem at the National Zoo
A shooting at the National Zoo in Washington, D.C. on Easter Monday sparked outrage and more interest in the Million Mom March. Donna appeared on “The O’Reilly Factor” to discuss the shooting, and more moms signed up. A DC cartoonist depicted the Zoo’s zebras signing up for the Million Mom March.
May 2, 2000: Moms Break the Internet
Donna Dees-Thomases and two other moms appeared on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” Oprah flashed the Million Mom March website address, causing it to crash from the surge of thousands of supporters attempting to sign up.
May 3, 2000: Rosie and Sophie
Missouri's youngest organizer, Sophie Newman, 7, appeared on the “Rosie O'Donnell Show” to talk about the march. After the march, Missouri moms returned home to educate moms about the voting record of U.S. Sen. John Ashcroft, an NRA champion who was defeated in the November election. In 2009, Sophie's mom Stacey was first elected as a state representative. As of 2015, three MMM members serve in the Missouri State House.
May 12, 2000: Moms and Morning TV
“Good Morning America” went live from the White House for a pre-Million Mom March broadcast. This was one of several MMM appearances on GMA. While the moms were on GMA, Texas Gov. and presidential candidate George W. Bush went on the “Today Show” to express his support for the Million Mom March and promised that if he were elected president, he would implement a nationwide trigger lock giveaway. Later that day, Gov. Bush agreed to support and sign a reauthorization of the Assault Weapons Ban if elected.
May 14, 2000: 750,000 Million Mothers and Others Descend on DC
On Mother's Day 2000, 750,000 moms and advocates marched on the National Mall to call for more regulations on guns in the United States. More than 150,000 additional marchers participated in satellite events organized in 77 cities across the country.
May 15, 2000: Million Mom March Prompts Congressional Hearings
U.S. Sen. Tom Daschle held a hearing on gun safety, calling the Million Mom March “a historic event which surpassed everyone’s expectations.” That same day, President Bill Clinton addressed the impact of gun violence at the Slain Officers Memorial on the National Mall.
May 17, 2000: Sheriff’s Department Changes Used Firearm Policy
At the urging of mothers in New Jersey, the Essex County Sheriff’s Department adopted a new policy to destroy used service revolvers rather than re-sell them. Other sheriffs' departments assumed the same policy after reports that the Granada Hills shooter used a recycled service revolver in his shooting rampage.
May 18, 2000: The Bell Campaign Changes Name to Million Mom March
The Bell Campaign, a year-old organization launched in May 1999, which had served as the fiscal sponsor of the Million Mom March Mother’s Day event, changed its name to become the Million Mom March – a 501(c)(4) advocacy organization -- and the Million Mom March Foundation, a tax-deductible, 501(c)(3) organization. The Bell Campaign's board and executive director remained unchanged.
May 19, 2000: Blek Becomes President of the Million Mom March
Bell Campaign President Mary Leigh Blek, a long-time respected advocate from Orange County, California, became the President of the Million Mom March. Mary Leigh described the victim-led approach to gun violence prevention as "a marathon, not a sprint." Donna described the mom approach as the "relay race approach." When exhausted or distracted, "hand off the baton to new activists. Take it back as needed."
June 5, 2000: Burgers and Bullets
New York's Million Mom Marchers called on the New York City Council to pass a measure officially declaring the NRA unwelcome. The measure encouraged other local agencies to reconsider the critical permits and licenses necessary to do business in New York. This was in response to the NRA's May 19, 2000 announcement of plans to open an NRA "Sports Blast" restaurant in Times Square. The restaurant never opened for business.
June 20, 2000: Voter Education Advocacy Training
Hundreds of Million Mom March leaders attended dozens of voter education advocacy trainings across the country, in partnership with the Alliance for Justice and others, in preparation for the 2000 presidential elections.
July 6, 2000: MMM President Addresses DNC
MMM President Mary Leigh Blek urged the Democratic National Committee Platform Drafting Committee in St. Louis to take up gun violence prevention as part of its platform for the presidential election.
July 8, 2000: The Mom PAC
The Million Mom March established a 527 PAC with a one million dollar anonymous donation. Through this organization, the Million Mom March worked to defeat gun lobby lapdogs in Congress.
August 10, 2000: Million Mom March Celebrates Gun Reform in New York
New York Million Mom March chapters lobbied for the passage of sweeping gun reform laws proposed by New Yorkers Against Gun Violence. They were signed into law on August 10, 2000, by Gov. George Pataki, one year after the California day camp shooting prompted the formation of the Million Mom March.
August 21, 2000: ASK Campaign Launched
Maryland Million Mom March leader Carole Price, who helped to launch the ASK Campaign on stage at the Million Mom March – alongside Dan Gross, who would later be named Brady Campaign President – became a spokesperson for the ASK Campaign. Over the next 12 years, MMM moms distributed an estimated 3 million ASK brochures to playgroups, schools, and pediatricians nationwide. And more than 20 million parents have been inspired to start asking if there are unlocked guns where their children play, making millions of children across the nation safer as a result.
September 15-16, 2000: Million Mom March National Conference Held
Three hundred and fifty moms from across the country gathered in Denver for more advocacy training. At that meeting, MMM President Mary Leigh Blek announced the organization’s endorsement of Vice President Al Gore for president.
September-November 2000: Michigan MMM Fights Concealed Carry Law
The Michigan Million Mom March collected 260,000 signatures in an attempt by referendum to stop a concealed carry law passed during the lame duck session of the Michigan legislature. Ultimately, the state courts refused to allow the referendum to move forward.
October 2000: MMM Endorses Hillary Clinton for U.S. Senate
MMM President Mary Leigh Blek, on behalf of the moms, endorsed Hillary Clinton for the U.S. Senate at a New York MMM meeting in New York. The moms awarded the First Lady the coveted MMM "Apple Pie" award.
October 2, 2000: Million Mom March
First Monday Million Mom March’s 240 chapters participated in Alliance for Justice First Monday events across the country.
November 7, 2000: Gun Violence Prevention Wins on Election Day
MMM chapters in Michigan, Washington State, and Missouri educated voters on the pro-gun voting records of three incumbent NRA-funded U.S. senators. All three lost at the polls. MMM educated voters in Florida, helping candidate Bill Nelson be elected to the US Senate. MMM members worked with coalitions to help pass the Oregon and Colorado referendums to close the gun show loopholes in those states. Many pro-gun violence prevention candidates won races across the country.
Mother’s Day 2001: First Anniversary of Million Mom March
MMM chapters celebrated the one-year anniversary of the historic march with dozens of rallies nationwide. Newly elected U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton joined New York Gov. George Pataki for an indoor MMM rally in White Plains. The Albany MMM organizer canceled the largest planned state-level event because of a credible death threat in which an arrest was made.
June 28, 2001: Kmart Cares about Columbine
Kmart Corporation announces its decision to stop selling handgun ammunition. The company’s decision came in the wake of protests from filmmaker Michael Moore, survivors of the 1999 Columbine, Colorado, school shooting massacre, Million Mom March activists, and the Suffolk County Chapter of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence.
July 16, 2001: Moms Go to the United Nations
MMM President Mary Leigh Blek spoke and received a standing ovation at the UN Delegation Meeting with the NGOs on the illicit trade in small arms. Mary Leigh returned to the United Nations in 2003, and Karin Wilson of the Brooklyn MMM spoke in 2005.
September 1, 2001: Legislative Victories in Texas
MMM Texas collaborated with Texans Against Gun Violence, Texans for Gun Safety, the Texas Council on Family Violence, and SafeRange to obtain two great victories in the Texas Legislature. Gov. Rick Perry signed SB 199, making it illegal for those under final protective order for family violence and those convicted of family violence crime to possess guns.
September 10, 2001: Kenneth Cole Supports Gun Violence Prevention
Fashion designer Kenneth Cole lent his support to the Million Mom March with his "Don't Shoot the Messenger" theme for Fashion Week. MMM moms organized a Fashion Day rally outside the “Today Show.”
October 1, 2001: MMM Merges with Handgun Control, Inc. to form Brady Campaign
The Million Mom March merged with the Brady Campaign (formerly Handgun Control, Inc.). A MMM elected representative would have a seat on the Brady Campaign Board of Trustees. Over the years, many MMM chapters re-branded themselves as Brady Campaign chapters, and some chose to proudly wear their original Million Mom March names.
October 2, 2001: Come Together: A Night for John Lennon
"Come Together: A Night for John Lennon" at Carnegie Hall, which was originally slated as a nationally televised fundraiser and awareness raiser for the Million Mom March, was redirected to help the many victims' families of 9/11.
December 2, 2001: Congress Considers Dangerous Gun Show Loophole
The Brady Campaign united with the Million Mom March, along with more than 60 national organizations and hundreds of state and local groups wrote, visited, and called all 100 U.S. senators, urging them to bring SB 767 to a floor vote. Sen. Jack Reed's bill had 21 co-sponsors, and moms were urging more to sign on. Complicating matters, Sens. McCain and Lieberman introduced SB 890, which also closed the gun show loophole, but had significant weaknesses. The gun violence prevention movement split, with most supporting the Reed bill. Moms applauded the sponsors of both versions but ultimately supported the Reed bill. Due to the tension between the bills, neither was able to move forward.
February 4, 2002: Minnesota Moms Stop Concealed Carry
Minnesota moms delivered flowers to state legislators and held a press conference to remember Minnesotans who died from gun violence in 2001, and to urge state legislators to vote against allowing concealed carry in the state. Minnesota legislators got the message, and voted down the concealed carry bill.
March 12, 2002: Moms Promise to Protest at Tax Time
The NRA's partnership with H&R Block outraged moms across the country. In a partnership with the Alliance for Justice and others, moms protested across the country with a promise to hold a massive protest at the tax preparers' offices on Tax Day, April 15. H&R Block eventually backed down and severed its marketing ties with the NRA.
May 30, 2002: Million Mom March Helps Defeat Concealed Carry
MMM volunteers proved to be a key factor in the defeat of concealed carry laws that would have put communities throughout the country at risk. Their actions prevented the passage of concealed carry laws in 14 states.
August 2002: First MMM Representative Elected to Brady Board
The first Million Mom March representative, elected by nearly 200 chapters at the time, takes seat on the Brady Campaign Board of Trustees. The public board member seat continues to represent all Million Mom March and Brady chapters.
December 23, 2002: New Jersey Passes Childproof Handgun Bill
After four years of debate, the childproof handgun bill passed both houses of the New Jersey legislature, and was signed into law. The MMM moms had worked tirelessly on the bill since Oct. 1999. The bill was first proposed by Ceasefire NJ in 1998. Twelve years later, Brady Center attorneys would successfully sue the NJ Attorney General’s office to issue a report, mandated by this law, on the status of smart gun technology.
2002-2003: Detroit's Moms Make Their Voice Heard
The Detroit chapter of the Michigan Million Mom March convinced public officials to pass ordinances prohibiting guns in public buildings and parks.
March 2003: The Lion and the Lamb Project
The MMM Manhattan chapter, in partnership with the Lion and the Lamb Project, convinced the national chain Walgreens to pull its Easter baskets, filled with bunny rabbits and assault weapon toys, from their shelves.
June 19, 2003: Houston Chronicle Says ‘No’ to Classified Gun Sales
MMM chapters continued to see success with the Campaign to Stop Classified Gun Sales, led by John Johnson of Iowans Against Gun Violence. So far, the newspapers which have agreed include: Philadelphia Inquirer, The Philadelphia Daily News, The Denver Post, the Sandusky (Ohio) Register and the Telegraph Herald in Dubuque, Iowa. In 2002, The Michigan Million Mom March got the Detroit Free Press and Detroit News to stop classified gun sales less than 24 hours after meeting with top executives at the newspapers.
September 4, 2003: MMM Recruits 200 Organizations
Million Mom March chapters across the country helped recruit a coalition of more than 275 consumer, children’s, civil rights, domestic violence, faith-based, law enforcement, and gun violence prevention organizations at the national, state, and local levels to send letters to all 535 members of Congress demanding support for H.R. 2038, the Assault Weapons Ban and Law Enforcement Protection Act of 2003. Many of these coalition partners were among the original sponsors of the Million Mom March.
September 30, 2003: California Passes Handgun Safety Legislation
California Gov. Gray Davis signed legislation requiring semiautomatic handguns to have a safety device, either a loaded-chamber indicator or a magazine disconnect safety. MMM volunteers campaigned for the passage of the bill which went into effect in 2007.
February 16, 2004: Halt the Assault Rally Announced
Million Mom March moms gathered in NYC at the Martin Luther King, Jr. High School, the site where two kids were shot in 2002, to announce the "Halt the Assault" rally on Mother's Day 2004. Essence magazine announced plans to sponsor the event.
March 2, 2004: Justice for Gun Victims Campaign Defeats ‘Immunity Bill’
The MMM chapters’ Justice for Gun Victims campaign defeated the "immunity bill" by enlisting the support of police chiefs. The MMM Chapters publicized former top gun lobbyist Robert Ricker’s testimony about how gun makers and corrupt gun dealers supply the illegal gun market.
May 7, 2004: Looking for a Few More Good Moms
Donna Dees-Thomases released her book, Looking for a Few Good Moms: How One Mother Rallied a Million Others Against the Gun Lobby. Its release date was in preparation for the expiration of the assault weapons ban in September of 2004. Many of the Million Mom Marchers sought to pass the torch to new leaders after five years of volunteering. Its purpose was to serve as a how-to guide for new moms to the movement.
May 9, 2004: Halt the Assault Rally on the Capitol Steps
The Million Mom March held a rally in Washington, DC to demand that Congress vote to renew the Assault Weapons Ban that was set to expire in 2004. Following the rally, Brady staffers with Million Mom March volunteers drove across the country to secure co-sponsorships and support for the re-authorization of the assault weapons ban and ban on high capacity magazines.
May 10, 2004: Moms and Kids Urge Renewal of Assault Weapons Ban
Million Mom March moms and kids delivered 200,000 cards with names of voters in wagons to members of Congress urging them to renew the Assault Weapons Ban. Million Mom March chapters, along with their partners in gun violence prevention, secured more co-sponsors to renew the ban than the original legislation had back in 1994. The ban ultimately expired in September of 2004.
August 2004: Moms on the Road with a Megaphone
Rhonda Foster, a Los Angeles mom whose 7-year-old son Evan had been killed with an assault weapon, obtained a double-decker bus to transport other moms who lost their children to gun violence. They joined the Million Mom March's Big Pink Rig on the road from Los Angeles to Inglewood's Darby Park. Moms stood on the top deck with a megaphone and drove through Los Angeles and Inglewood encouraging citizens to contact their elected officials. Later, the moms held a press conference at Darby Park in front of the Peace Pole to spread the gun violence prevention message and provide an opportunity for local youth to express themselves.
September 13, 2004: Ban on .50 Caliber Rifles in California
Million Mom March chapters helped pass new gun laws including the .50 Caliber BMG Regulation Act of 2004, a ban on .50 caliber rifles.
November 2004: MMM Volunteers Meet with Howard Dean
Georgia Million Mom March members met with Howard Dean before the 2004 election, and convinced him of the dangers of Congress immunizing the gun industry. Dean agreed to fight the gun industry if elected.
2005: Michigan MMM Stops ‘Stand Your Ground’
Michigan Million Mom March put a stop to passage of "Stand Your Ground" bill. This dangerous bill ultimately passed the next year and was signed into law in 2006.
July 29, 2005: Illinois Background Check Legislation Passed
Illinois Governor Rob Blagojevich signed into law legislation closing the state’s gun show loophole. Illinois Million Mom March chapters provided the grassroots support to help get this bill passed along with their coalition partner, the Illinois Council for Gun Violence Prevention.
October 3, 2005: ‘Stand Your Ground’ Protests Florida
Million Mom March chapters protested the “Stand Your Ground” bill to try to prevent its passage. When the Florida state legislature failed to head their warnings, Moms alerted Floridians and tourists of the dangerous consequences of that law. MMM activists distributed Brady Campaign flyers at the Miami International airport warning travelers not to argue unnecessarily with local people or risk being shot.
2006: California Million Mom March Changes Name
California's Million Mom March chapters voted to change its name to California Brady chapters. Other chapters followed suit in Texas, Minnesota, and elsewhere. After Newtown, NYC Million Mom March became part of New Yorkers Against Gun Violence.
April 16, 2007: Virginia Tech Massacre
Following the tragic mass shooting at Virginia Tech, Million Mom March chapter leaders worked with their coalition partners to improve state laws. Mothers and others ultimately succeeded in pushing for measures "to ensure that disqualifying mental health records be uploaded into the National Background Check System to bar persons who had been involuntarily committed to a mental health facility from legally purchasing firearms."
August 28, 2007: 25 MMM Chapters Protest ‘Bad Apple’ Gun Dealers
On a national day of protest led by the Rainbow Coalition, 25 Million Mom March chapters spoke out against “bad apple” gun dealers and illegal trafficking.
October 13, 2007: Microstamping Legislation Passed
California Brady Campaign chapters (formerly California MMM) successfully advocated for legislation requiring all new semi-automatic handguns to have "microstamping" technology, and helped pass legislation requiring handgun ammunition vendors to keep purchaser records.
April 16, 2008: ‘Lie-Ins’ Mark Anniversary of Virginia Tech Massacre
The North Carolina MMM chapter held its "lie-in" on the UNC-Chapel Hill campus to remember Eve Carson (the UNC Student Body President), Abehijit Mahato (a Duke graduate student) and other gun violence victims. Lie-in participants called for sensible gun laws to prevent future tragedies.
January 2009: MMM Protests Senator Gillibrand’s Appointment
New York MMM protested Gov. Patterson’s appointment of NRA A-rated Rep. Kirsten Gillibrand to the U.S. Senate. Moms bombarded the Governor’s office and Sen. Schumer’s office with calls. Following her appointment, Sen. Gillibrand reached out first to the MMM to discuss her evolving position on guns. By November, Sen. Gillibrand honored her promise and introduced a sweeping anti-gun trafficking bill in the U.S. Senate.
April 2009: The Bronx MMM Gun Buy Back
The Bronx MMM, led by Gloria Cruz, participated in a New York Police Department / Bronx-sponsored gun buy back, which resulted in getting 987 firearms off the streets.
May 28, 2009: Louisiana Moms Work to Keep Guns Off Campuses
Louisiana moms work with a diverse coalition as part of the Campaign to Keep Guns Off Campus to successfully stop HB 27, a bill that would have allowed guns on college campuses. Bill loses by an overwhelming vote of 86-18.
May 29, 2009: MMM Lobbies in Louisiana
Under the leadership of the Campaign to Keep Guns Off Campus, Million Mom March members from Louisiana, along with university leaders, successfully advocated for the Louisiana House of Representatives to reject HB 27, which would have allowed guns on the state's college campuses. Million Mom March members worked with the Campaign to Keep Guns of Campus on numerous other efforts to stop this dangerous legislation which was sweeping across the country.
August 6, 2009: New Jersey Passes One Gun Per Month Law
New Jersey MMM chapters joined their partners in gun violence prevention in celebrating the signage of a bill limited handgun purchases to one gun a month, an effort that MMM has advocated since its inception. The measure is intended to stem the tide of gun trafficking.
October 13, 2009: New York City MMM Endorses Mayor Bloomberg
Moms volunteered for Mayor Michael Bloomberg in all New York City boroughs in his campaign for a third term as mayor of New York.
2009-2010: MMM Chapters Call Congress to Close the Gun Show Loophole
MMM chapters, along with their allies, secured 113 co-sponsors for HR 2324, a bill to close the gun show loophole. However, the legislation did not receive a vote.
January 2010: California Moms Launch the Starbucks Campaign
In response to the threat of open carry, the Brady Campaign’s California chapters (formerly MMM chapters) convinced Peet’s Coffee and California Pizza to ban open carry in their stores nationwide. The chapters launched a nationwide boycott of Starbucks for its refusal. Washington State MMM Chapters joined Washington Ceasefire to rally against Starbucks’ open carry policy. Activists collected more than 30,000 signatures to deliver to Starbucks national headquarters. Open carry was eventually banned in California in 2012.
January 2010: The Bronx MMM Gun Buy Back
The Bronx MMM, led by Gloria Cruz, participated in a New York Police Department / Bronx-sponsored gun buy back, which resulted in getting 1,200 firearms off the streets.
May 9, 2010: Moms March and Mourn on Mother’s Day Eve
Citywide elected officials participated in the Annual Walk Against Violence sponsored by the Bronx MMM. City Council President Christine Quinn and Bronx President Ruben Diaz, Jr. marched with the moms.
May 10, 2010: 10th Anniversary of the Million Mom March
For the 10th anniversary, volunteers promoted and distributed petitions to close the gun show loophole. Oregon moms hold annual rally/walk in Eugene. Bronx MMM held its annual march on Mother's Day Eve, May 9th.
January 20, 2011-2014: MMM Chapters Screen ‘Living for 32’
MMM chapters set up dozens of screenings of the documentary “Living for 32,” which tells the story of Colin Goddard, a victim of the Virginia Tech shooting in 2007. Colin started with the Brady Campaign as an intern, before becoming a staffer. Colin's father started a Virginia MMM chapter, where he continues to volunteer.
October 10, 2011: California Stops Open Carry
California Gov. Jerry Brown signs a law banning open carry of handguns, following statewide protests and urging by Brady Campaign chapters (formerly MMM) and their coalition partners.
September 28, 2012: California Closes Open Carry Loophole
At the urging of California Brady Campaign (formerly MMM) chapters and their coalition partners, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a bill that banned openly carrying rifles and shotguns. The new law closed a loophole from the previous year when the state banned the open carrying of unloaded handguns in public.
December 14, 2012: Massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary
After the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook elementary, the country was devastated and in shock. Million Mom March chapters across the country fielded thousands of calls and emails from new activists joining the movement. A volunteer Spanish-speaking spokesperson for the Brady Campaign spent 48 hours in a marathon session on Spanish-speaking television, consoling viewers and providing information on how to take action. Thousands of outraged citizens flooded the MMM webpage, demanding a national march.
December 17, 2012: Let's Get MADD About Guns!
The New York Times interviewed MMM Founder Donna Dees-Thomases on her 13-year perspective about what's needed to enact change in America. She pointed to the MMM chapters across the country who've embraced parts of the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) model as being the greatest agents of change. The first "Gun Report" then called for the need for a nationwide MADD for guns.
December 18, 2012: Michigan MMM Saves ‘Gun-Free’ Zones
Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder vetoed a bill that would have invalidated “gun-free” zones like those at schools and churches. This was one of many bad bills stopped by local Michigan MMM since 1999.
January 15, 2013: NY SAFE Act Signed into Law
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed into law measures advocated by New York MMM chapters and New Yorkers Against Gun Violence for years prior to the Newtown tragedy. Following its passage, New York MMM chapters spent several months helping organize rallies and mentoring new activists on how to protect the New York SAFE Act.
February 12, 2013: MMM Buses to Albany
Manhattan Million Mom March funds a bus to Albany to support the recently enacted NY SAFE ACT. Participants include the Bronx chapter of MMM and New Yorkers Against Gun Violence (formerly MMM).
February 14, 2013: March for Change in Hartford
Organized by a former volunteer for the MMM, the March for Change in Hartford, Connecticut, proved to be the catalyst to mobilize all new activists in Connecticut from the Newtown tragedy. All worked and collaborated to successfully push for gun reforms in Connecticut. March for Change became part of the Campaign Against Gun Violence, the oldest gun violence prevention organization in the state, run by Ron Pinciaro, who started with the Million Mom March.
April 26, 2013: MMM Calls on NJ Attorney General to Issue Report
The negligent shooting death of a Toms River, NJ child prompted outrage from the New Jersey MMM, who called on the NJ Attorney General to issue is bi-yearly report on smart gun technology.
November 5, 2013: Virginia Voters Support Gun Violence Prevention
Virginia MMM chapters, despite tremendous opposition from the NRA in their own backyard, helped elect a slate of pro-gun violence prevention candidates for top offices including the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Attorney General. They all ran on a promise to work towards ending gun violence in the Commonwealth.
November 23, 2013: Calling on Congress to ‘Finish the Job’
Across the country, Brady Campaign/MMM chapters called on Congress to “Finish the Job” by passing expanded Brady background checks on all gun sales, including online and at gun shows. On Staten Island, Phil Jonas, a leader of NYAGV and of the Staten Island Chapter of MMM, commented: “Like most of my generation, I remember exactly where I was and what I felt when I learned that President Kennedy was shot. He was murdered by a man who got his rifle by mail order. No questions asked. We can, and we must, do better than this!”
December 14, 2013: Remembering Sandy Hook
Brady Campaign and MMM chapters across the country organized and/or participated in dozens of events to commemorate the somber one-year anniversary of the Sandy Hook massacre in Newtown, Connecticut. In California, chapters from San Francisco to San Diego held 25 events with hundreds in attendance, including former Speaker of the House, Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi. In Massachusetts, hundreds attend a Boston Common march, including the state's Chair of the Joint Committee on Public Safety - the committee responsible for steering the gun safety bills to laws.
May 14, 2014: Our Moms Ask!
Million Mom March of Northern Westchester organized a collaborative event with New Yorkers Against Gun Violence (formerly MMM) and Moms Demand Action of Hudson Valley to promote the ASK Campaign. The campaign urges parents and caregivers to ask one life-saving question: Is there an unlocked gun where my child plays?
May 9, 2014: Anti-Domestic Abuse Legislation Passed
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton signed HF 3238, which provides a mechanism to get guns away from domestic abusers, stalkers, and people subject to orders for protection. Protect MN, Brady Chapters (formerly Minnesota Million Mom March) and domestic violence prevention leaders lobbied their legislators with letters, rallies, phone-banking, and personal visits.
May 19, 2014: NJ Attorney General Releases Report on Smart Guns
After over ten years of New Jersey officials failing to follow their state’s groundbreaking childproof handgun law, New Jersey’s Acting Attorney General finally issued a legally-required, biannual report on the availability of “personalized” handguns for sale in the U.S. New Jersey issued the report in response to a lawsuit filed by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and the Million Mom March Mercer County Chapter. The lawsuit successfully forced the Acting Attorney General to issue the long-delayed report.
June 18, 2014: Lobby Day on Domestic Violence
Million Mom March and Brady Campaign members participated in a DC lobby day asking their representatives to strengthen laws to keeps guns out of the hands of domestic violence abusers.
August 10, 2014: Granada Hills Families March On
15 years after the Granada Hills shooting, the Granada Hills families impacted by the shooting marched on with their advocacy. To date, they have donated an estimated one million dollars’ worth of volunteer hours since first becoming activists. September 30, 2014: California Gun Restraining Order Gun violence prevention partners, including the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence, worked with the Brady Campaign’s California chapters (formerly MMM), to pass a groundbreaking law which gives Californians help in removing guns from dangerous family members.
November 2014: Gun Violence Prevention Candidates Elected
MMM moms and Brady Campaign members went to the polls in midterm elections to elect gun violence prevention candidates, including Rep. Gary Peters, who easily beat NRA-endorsed Terri Lynn Land to replace Sen. Carl Levin in Michigan. Peters had co-sponsored background check legislation in the House, proving that running on gun violence prevention is good politics.
December 6, 2014: Phoenix MMM Protest ‘Bad Apple’ Gun Dealer
The Greater Phoenix MMM chapter joins national organizing staff from the Brady Campaign and diverse local activists to rally outside gun dealer Windy City Pawn and protest “bad apple” gun dealers that sell guns to straw purchasers who flood our nation’s streets with guns used in crimes.
December 10, 2014: MMM Pushes for Surgeon General Confirmation
Million Mom March and Brady Campaign members participated in the lobby day sponsored by the Newtown Action Alliance. The activists visited their U.S. Senators to successfully push for the confirmation of the nominee Dr. Vivek Murthy for Surgeon General. The Senate confirmed Dr. Murthy five days later.
December 15, 2014: MMM Pressures Governor McAuliffe to Take Action
At the urging of Brady Campaign chapters (formerly MMM), Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced a sweeping set of legislative proposals, including requiring background checks on all gun show sales, bills to keep guns from domestic violence abusers, and returning the state to its one-gun-a-month restriction.
December 31, 2014: Celebratory Gunfire Press Conferences Continue
Pennsylvania MMM's Joe Jaskolka and his family rang in the New Year with their annual news conference warning revelers of the dangers of celebratory gunfire. Joe was severely injured on New Year's Eve 1998. At age 12, Joe had served as the Delaware state coordinator for the Million Mom March on Mother's Day 2000.
January 2015: Michigan Gov. Vetoes Concealed Carry Bill
Million Mom March chapters, the Brady Campaign’s email blasts, and experience made a difference in securing Governor Rick Snyder’s veto of a concealed carry bill in the Michigan legislature that had the potential to put women and families at risk of domestic violence.
January 30, 2015: Domestic Violence Bill Introduced
MMM Missouri founder and Missouri State Rep. Stacey Newman (D-St. Louis) introduced domestic violence bills in the Missouri State House which included a gun violence restraining order. She was joined at a press event in Kansa City by Kansas State Rep. Barbara Bollier (R-Mission Hills) who proposed similar bills.
February 2015: Million Mom Marchers Serve as Elected Officials
As of 2015, three MMM members have been elected to the Missouri State House. A Million Mom Marcher has held the office of sheriff in a Connecticut town. A founding member of the Million Mom March was elected mayor of a New York town in 2006 and became one of the founding members of Mayors Against Illegal Guns. The first male member of the Million Mom March, a lieutenant from the New York Police Department, is now the Brooklyn borough president. Numerous others have been elected to county commissions, school boards, and other appointed positions. Many Million Mom March organizers currently hold leadership positions in gun violence prevention organizations nationwide.
May 5, 2015: LA Gala Celebrates 15 Years of MMM Making America Safer
To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Million Mom March, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence honors MMM founder Donna Dees-Thomases with the Sarah Brady Visionary Award and premiers a video tribute in honor of Donna and the movement. Donna helps kick off Brady’s “Year of a Million Actions” campaign to run from Mother’s Day 2015 through Mother’s Day 2016, asking everyone to take action to help cut gun deaths in half by 2025.
October 10, 2015: California Brady Chapters Succeed in Making Schools Safer
The 26 California Chapters of the Brady Campaign worked many months on passing through the state legislature SB 707, priority legislation to keep hidden and loaded guns out of schools and campuses. After chapters put pressure on the governor with calls, emails and tweets, Governor Jerry Brown signs the bill into law on October 10, 2015.