Victims families call for a campaign-free day to honor the 15th anniversary of 9/11 terror attacks

A woman takes a photo at the National September 11 Memorial and Museum in Manhattan

NEW YORK — Tuesday is the deadline for those running for the White House to commit to a campaign moratorium on September 11th. In August, the organization 9/11 Day issued a request of Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, Jill Stein and Gary Johnson to suspend all campaign activity, including advertisements, on Sunday, September 11, 2016, in observance of the 15th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. So far all have agreed except Jill Stein of the Green Party, whom the organization says has not yet responded. 9/11 Day is a non-profit that successfully led the effort to establish September 11 as a federally-recognized National Day of Service and Remembrance.The request letters were signed by the co-founders of 9/11 Day, family members who lost loved ones on 9/11, and leaders of 9/11 support groups. Copies of these letters were also sent to the Democratic National Committee and the Republican National Committee, asking each to request that all state and local candidates across the country suspend their political campaigns on September 11 as well. The 9/11 Day organization says that the “No Campaigning on 9/11 Pledge” is part if its mission to continue the messages of unity and public service that emerged in the days following the 2001 terror attacks.”9/11 helped us realize in an instant how insignificant our differences really are in comparison to our common goodness as human beings and our shared sense of compassion for those in need,” said Alice Hoagland, who lost her son Mark Bingham on September 11. “It hardly mattered what political party we supported, or whether we came from a Red State or Blue State. At that moment, we were all human beings, and it is important that we find a way to keep that spirit of unity alive.” Rather than engaging in regular campaign activity, 9/11 Day asked that political candidates take the day to serve in their communities and to speak about the importance of remembrance on 9/11. “Americans everywhere wish to observe 9/11 in the same spirit of national unity, prayer and service that brought our country together in the immediate aftermath of the attacks,” said David Paine, president and co-founder of 9/11 Day. Added Jay Winuk, 9/11 Day co-founder, whose brother Glenn J. Winuk perished in the line of duty in the 9/11 attacks: “Presidential and other candidates have 364 other days of the year to voice their policies and positions, and trade barbs. We respectfully ask that on this one day, each election cycle, they use their voices to spread the word about the importance of service to honor our first responders and those who were lost. They can set a strong example for our nation by engaging in service-oriented activities. The focus here should be on bringing people together, not apart, and cherishing our common humanity as a nation.”The nonprofit 9/11 Day was founded in 2002 to encourage Americans and others to observe the anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks as a day of unity, service and remembrance, in honor of the 9/11 victims, volunteers and rescue and recovery workers. Last year, nearly 30 million Americans observed the day by volunteering, supporting charities and performing simple good deeds.This year the organization has recruited a younger generation of ambassadors among those who were born on September 11, 2001, now fifteen years old. Theie goal is to share the message of service and the historic record of 9/11 with a younger generation. The group has also created free lesson plans for teachers of all grades on the events of September 11, 2001.