Charleston Massacre at Historic Black Church A National Tragedy

Washington, DC, June 18, 2015—Last night, a young white man opened fire and killed six Black women and three Black men at a historically Black church in Charleston, South Carolina during a prayer service. Local authorities and the U.S. Justice Department announced they will investigate the attack as a hate crime.

“It is with a heavy heart that we join in mourning those killed in last night’s tragic shooting at a Charleston historically Black church. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of the murder victims and the entire community of Charleston.

“This massacre is frighteningly reminiscent of the tragedies of another era taking place in churches in the South. While many would like to think that our nation has eliminated racism and discrimination, this appalling act of hate shows that we have not. As this violent epidemic, the targeting and killing of Black people, continues with no end in sight—it becomes ever more clear that it is everyone’s responsibility to end all forms of racism and discrimination. No one, absolutely no one, should ever fear for their lives when stepping out of their homes, walking down the street in their own neighborhood, or attending a prayer services in their place of worship.

“We thank the U.S. Justice Department for providing support in the investigation of this national tragedy. The perpetrator of this horrific act must be brought to justice and we must all work harder to create a society free from murder, violence and hate crimes,” said Rea Carey, National LGBTQ Task Force Executive Director.


Jorge Amaro
Media and Public Relations Director