Nearly five years after the fatal shooting of 49 people by shooter Omar Mateen, the grief of the LGBTQ+ community, as well as the memory of the Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, remains intact.
Especially within the LGBTQ+ and Latino community.
That is why the announcement of the collaboration between Ricky Martin and the non-profit foundation onePulse seems like the most logical step towards healing.
As reported by NBC News, Martin will be the official spokesperson for the new campaign that seeks to raise $49 million to build a memorial and museum honoring the lives of the 49 victims of the shooting.
The OUTLOVE HATE campaign, launched on February 14, will feature the Puerto Rican icon’s image and voice in public service announcements promoting tolerance, the foundation said.
“We are thrilled to have one of the best-selling international music artists of all time join our Pulse family as a national spokesperson,” said Earl Crittenden, onePULSE Foundation board chair, in a statement. “His global platform allows us to share our mission with even more audiences, ensuring Pulse’s legacy of love lives on forever.”
The shooting on the night of June 12, 2016, at the hands of Mateen, has been called one of the worst hate crimes against the LGBTQ+ community in the U.S. and one of the moments when racism and homophobia became most evident in the country.
Mateen killed 49 people and injured 53 more dancing during the nightclub’s “Latino Night.”
In addition to a memorial and museum, the campaign money will fund educational programs, community outreach, and 49 legacy scholarships.
Martin, who recently visited the Pulse Memorial to pay his respects, was enthusiastic about being involved in the campaign.
“I’m excited to assist onePULSE Foundation with engagement and awareness-building opportunities as they build the National Pulse Memorial & Museum,” the singer shared in the statement.