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Biden signs bill making Pulse nightclub a national memorial

White House LGBTQ
Posted at 10:00 AM, Jun 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-25 15:00:52-04

On Friday, President Joe Biden commemorated Pride Month at the White House by signing a bill into law that designates the site of a 2016 shooting at a gay nightclub as the "National Pulse Memorial."

"May another president never have to sign a bill for a memorial like this," Biden said.

The legislation Biden signed Friday passed the Senate by voice vote earlier this month. The House passed its own version of the bill in May.

The legislation honors the 49 people killed in a mass shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando on June 12, 2016. Because Pulse was a gay nightclub, many of the shooting victims were LGBTQ+.

"A place of acceptance and joy became a place of pain and loss," Biden said in remarks ahead of the signing.

According to NBC News, while the legislation makes the nightclub a national memorial, it does not make it a part of the National Park System or send federal funds to create a monument.

In 2019, an organization dedicated to creating a permanent memorial to honor the victims unveiled renderings for a potential memorial site. The organization, onePULSE Foundation, says "the project is currently in the schematic design phase, and following that will be the design development stage."

After signing the bill, Biden delivered remarks for LGBTQ+ Pride Month from the East Room in the White House.

"Just over 5 years ago at Pulse Nightclub, a place of acceptance and joy, became a place of unspeakable pain and loss," President Biden said. "We will never fully recover but we will remember. May no president ever have to sign a monument like this.”

Survivors, family members, and victims of the Pulse Nightclub shooting also attended the event.

First Lady Jill Biden also attended the event.