Westside Family Health Center (WFHC) will close at 10 a.m. on Friday, April 20 in support of student efforts across the country to stop gun violence. WFHC will honor those students, faculty and staff who have lost their lives in tragic school shootings and support those students who are working to make changes in gun laws. The community at large is invited to join WFHC in front of their location at 1711 Ocean Park Boulevard from 10 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. WFHC will have signs available with the names of students, faculty and school staff who have been killed by gun violence. After the rally, team members will hold private in-service trainings about gun violence as a key social determinant of health.

National School WalkOut was organized by Lane Murdock, a sophomore at Connecticut’s Ridgefield High School along with three of her classmates, who wondered what they could do following the tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14. They organized a National School WalkOut through a student-based organization that includes 150 chapters nationwide, all run by students in each community. The date of Friday, April 20  was chosen as it commemorates the 19th anniversary of the horrendous shooting at Columbine High School in Columbine, Colorado. The goal of the National School WalkOut is to work with other students across the country to change the dialogue on gun violence. The students hope to work on some gun-sense legislation that addresses the gun violence issues such as bump stock bans and universal background checks.

About Westside Family Health Center

Since 1974, Westside Family Health Center, located in Santa Monica at 1711 Ocean Park Boulevard has been at the forefront of providing outstanding health care and health education to low-income and uninsured women, men and their families who live throughout Los Angeles County. Using the same philosophy of education, empowerment and partnership as the founders, Westside Family Health Center currently provides five core programs: Family Practice, Blooming Babies Prenatal, Strong Start Pediatrics, Reproductive Health Services and Community Outreach and Education. Westside Family Health Center also provides low or no cost immunizations for children.

Westside Family Health Center is a non-profit community health center providing a wide range of low-cost health care services and serves more than 12,000 low-income and uninsured women, men and children, regardless of one’s ability to pay. Please visit www.wfhcenter.org

Submitted by Celia Bernstein