Reps. Soto, Murphy, Demings Call for Designation of Pulse as National Memorial Site
Orlando, FL – Today, U.S. Representatives Darren Soto (FL-09), Stephanie Murphy (FL-07), and Val Demings (FL-10) announced legislation introduced to establish the site of Pulse nightclub as a federally recognized National Memorial Site. The announcement was made during a press conference at the Pulse Interim Memorial.
“Our efforts to designate the Pulse Nightclub a National Memorial site honors the lives of the 49 victims and survivors, and ensures no one ever forgets this tragedy. The Memorial will serve as a reminder of the remarkable way our community came together to heal and overcome hate. We recognize the need to preserve LGBTQ historic sites, because of cases like the Matthew Shepard Memorial which have been deliberately destroyed over time without these protections. Let the Pulse Memorial become a symbol of hope, love, and light,” stated Rep. Darren Soto.
“The Pulse tragedy shook our community to its core and forever changed us. It’s important we remember the love that the 49 victims and their loved ones brought into this world, which will always be stronger than the hate that stole their lives on that day. By designating the site as a National Memorial, we will honor their memories, be inspired by their legacies, and recognize the positive contributions the LGBTQ community offers to the world,” stated Rep. Stephanie Murphy.
“A community is not brick and mortar, it is the lives of its people, the dreams of its children, and the memory of those we’ve lost. Our strength flows from those memories, which cement the bonds of our common humanity and unite us in shared history. 49 dreams were cut short on June 12th, 2016, and dozens still carry the scars of that terrible night. Yet through remembrance, we transform hate into love, and loss into strength. May Barbara Poma’s vision for a National Memorial allow us to remember the past and provide hope for the future,” stated Rep. Val Demings.
“Establishing the site of Pulse nightclub as a National Historic Site is an important step in honoring those who were taken and ensuring we as a nation remember what happened here on June 12, 2016. In these times when acts of hate and violence are on the rise, we must remember our past and work to do better now and in the future,” said onePULSE Foundation CEO Barbara Poma.
H.R. 3094 grants a federal designation honoring the 49 lives taken on June 12, 2016, as well as the survivors, first responders, and the entire Central Florida community. A non-National Park Service affiliated federal recognition as a National Memorial site allows for public or private grants.
On June 12, 2016, 49 lives were taken and 68 others were injured in the Pulse nightclub tragedy. Following the tragedy, Pulse nightclub owner Barbara Poma established onePULSE Foundation, a 501(c)(3) educational nonprofit, to memorialize the tragedy and ensure that Pulse’s legacy of love, acceptance and hope will never be lost. onePULSE plans to build the National Pulse Memorial and Museum that will include the Orlando Health Survivors Walkway – slated to open in 2022 – on the site of the Pulse nightclub and nearby properties.
To view the legislation, click here.