HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – On Friday in Connecticut and across the nation, there was a call for action to end gun violence and honor the thousands of lives lost. Firearms are now the leading cause of death for American children and teens, according to the CDC.

Late Friday morning, Gov. Ned Lamont joined a ceremony to honor those victims and demand change.

There have been 233 mass shootings since the beginning of the year. The message on Friday was that people should feel safe going to a hospital, school, and even grocery stores.

The national Wear Orange movement was inspired by friends of a 15-year-old Chicago high school student killed by gunfire in 2013. She died one week after performing at President Barack Obama’s second inauguration. Her death drew a national spotlight.

Compass Peace Builders is a Hartford community group that is on the front lines with wrap-around services for victims of gun violence.

“I think of Dakari, who tells me that he’s out in the northern part of the neighborhood and he gets a gun pointed at him. Thankfully, the gun jammed and he was not shot,” said Jackie Santiago, Compass Peace Builders.

The City of Hartford launched The Heart Team, which is an emergency assistant response team. A mental health team member arrives on the scene with first responders. So far, 80 calls for help have been answered.

On Friday, St. Francis Hospital trauma surgeons stood with community activists and Lamont to say enough is enough.

Lamont was asked whether he had changed his mind from last week about calling a special session to clamp down on ghost guns. He said the votes haven’t changed.

“Jodi, we tried really hard to do something as regards to those ghost guns that are getting illegally picked up on the street more and more often. I haven’t heard of any votes that have changed. I’m not sure it’s worth having a special session unless we can get something done,” Lamont said.

Here is a breakdown of the gun laws passed in Connecticut (source: State Senate Research Team – via Sen. Will Haskell):

  • Banned ghost guns, bump stocks, and automatic weapons like AR-15s
  • Required safe storage of firearms in homes and unattended vehicles
  • Raised the age to 21 to possess a handgun or rifle with a magazine capacity of over five rounds
  • Implemented and strengthened “Red Flag” laws to allow police to remove firearms from the home of an individual who poses a risk to themselves or others
  • Made it a criminal offense for a parent to allow their minor child to access a firearm
  • Required gun purchasers to undergo an extensive background check and complete training
  • Banned high capacity gun magazines
  • Invested over $50 million in school security
  • Dedicated tens of millions for expanded access to mental healthcare
  • Invested millions to help secure places of worship through competitive grants
  • Ensured weapons can be removed via a temporary restraining order
  • Established a gun violence intervention and prevention program

It’s unlikely those weapons made before 2019 will be dealt with.

Stay tuned to News 8 for updates on this story.