Days before the fifth anniversary of the horrific Pulse nightclub shooting, the U.S. Senate unanimously approved designating the site of the former nightclub as a national memorial.
The House version of the bill, HR 49, passed on a voice vote on May 12.
From the Orlando Sentinel:
Forty-nine people were killed and dozens more injured in the June 12 LGBTQ+ nightclub shooting, which is among the deadliest mass shootings in American history.
A similar bill passed the U.S. House last year but stalled in the Senate. This year’s bill still has to be signed into law by President Joe Biden before the designation becomes official.
The national designation does not incorporate the memorial into the National Park system and it does not require the monument to receive federal funds.
The onePULSE Foundation, a nonprofit founded in the wake of the shooting, plans to build the National Pulse Memorial & Museum in Orlando over the next few years. Preliminary designs for the memorial and museum incorporate the remains of the club into a garden with a reflecting pool and 49 trees, with the open-air museum planned for construction a half-mile away.
Scott Bowman, a spokesman for onePULSE Foundation, issued a statement Wednesday that onePULSE was “thrilled” about the memorial’s national designation.
“The unanimous consent is such welcome news as we are set to mark the five-year remembrance of the Pulse tragedy,” said Bowman. “This recognition from both the House and Senate means so much to the LGBTQ+ community.”