LaTayla is a high school junior in Georgia, the group lead of the Atlanta community Students Demand Action, and a gun violence survivor. She had always wanted to do something related to gun violence prevention after the untimely death of her cousin, but didn’t know what. It wasn’t until she met her mentor, Sharmine Brown, who was a part of Moms Demand Action and introduced her to Students Demand Action, that she realized that the organization was for her. Later she was able to join the Survivor Engagement Working Group where she got to work for and with other survivors. In her free time, she reads, watches anime, learns how to produce music, and does community service activities with Jared’s Heart of Success Incorporated.
Get to know LaTayla even more in her Q&A!
Name: LaTayla Billingslea
Astrological Sign: Aquarius
Location: Covington, GA
Students Demand Action Chapter: Atlanta Community Students Demand Action
What do you hope to pursue after you graduate?
I plan to become a sexual assault nurse examiner and later get a specialist in forensics to become a forensic scientist.
Why is gun violence prevention important to you?
Gun violence is important to me because I have been personally affected by it and have close friends who have also been affected by it. Another reason is because of the generational trauma that gun violence has caused and will continue to cause if nothing is done.
What are you most proud of working on as a Students Demand Action volunteer?
I am most proud of working with voter registration and outreach because I get to empower people, mostly the younger generation of voters, that their vote is important and a way for their voice and opinion to be heard.
What public figure or social justice icon do you most admire and why?
A social justice icon that I admire would be Audre Lorde because of her commitment to issues relating to feminism, civil rights, and the LGBT community.
If you could only eat one food for a year, what would you pick?
What do you do for self care?
For self care, I usually listen to music, read, or do my hair while watching a show.
What motivates you to keep going?
What motivates me to keep going are the generations to come and how I don’t want them to feel the same fear and disappointment that I feel right now.