Washington, DC—Below is a statement by U.S. Conference of Mayors President and Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer on the shootings in Atlanta:

“The shootings last night, resulting in the deaths of eight people in and around Atlanta, remind us of the terrible toll that has resulted from the easy availability of guns in our country and what happens when guns get into the wrong hands. This carnage continues to be an all-too common occurrence in our lives—ripping communities, families and our country apart. The U.S. Conference of Mayors urges the Senate to quickly consider and pass the critical legislation adopted by the House last week that will greatly strengthen the nation’s background check system.

“The nation’s mayors grieve for the eight lives lost and stand with Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and the city’s residents as we all try to make sense of such a senseless act. We applaud the fast response of local law enforcement and their quick apprehension of the shooter.

“While the details surrounding the shooter’s motive continue to be examined, we cannot ignore that the majority of the victims were Asian American and that this horrific act comes amid a significant increase in hateful rhetoric and crimes directed at Asian Americans. The nation’s mayors condemn these dangerous and cruel acts and pledge to work in their cities to build inclusive communities and bring all people together.”