DENVER - Family members of victims killed in mass murders have joined together to sponsor a White House website petition for the creation of a fund that will direct donations to victims and their families. The group includes a majority of the families that lost relatives in the Colorado shootings at Columbine High School and the Aurora Century 16 movie theater.
Created Monday, the petition on the White House's website requires 100,000 signatures to get President Barack Obama's administration to review the idea. It calls for the creation of a National Compassion Fund that would serve as a "centralized, trusted" organization to make certain "100% of the money raised for victims actually get to them."
The petition says it is sponsored by a total of 64 parents and family members related to people lost in the September 11 attacks, the Columbine High School shooting, Northern Illinois University shooting, Virginia Tech shooting, Aurora movie theater shooting and the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.
"A trusting public believes the money they've donated reaches the victims directly. But money collected by non-profits goes to support their own long-term operations and fundraising goals or is siphoned off to other non-profits," the petition says.
Tom Teves, whose son Alex was one of the 12 people killed in Aurora, told 7NEWS he is among group members supporting the proposal. Teves was outspoken last September in his criticism about the Community First Foundation, which originally oversaw donations for the July 20, 2012 theater shooting victims and their families.
"There have been two tragedies in Aurora," Teves said at that time. "The first was the theater shooting, where I lost my son. The second is how the victims have been treated by the powers that be."