WASHINGTON – Today, Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva voted to pass the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, legislation that intends to protect our kids, make our schools safer, and reduce the threat of gun violence across our country.
“Today, Congress took a historic and positive step toward meaningful gun safety. Following the Supreme Court decision to allow the proliferation of more guns and violence, this legislation comes at a pivotal moment in our fight for gun safety reforms. The Bipartisan Safer Communities Act makes critical investments in mental health resources, protections for victims of domestic violence, increased vetting and background checks for those 18-20 years old and supports evidence-based school safety. Arizona must act swiftly to implement the red flag law program incentivized in this legislation. We know these programs work and prevent the worst in times of danger or crisis by individuals who seek to do harm to themselves or others. Law enforcement, mental health professionals and responsible gun owners overwhelmingly support these measures. If Arizona fails to act in this regards, they will be responsible for avoidable deaths and tragedy.”
While this legislation is a monumental admission by Republicans that continuing to ignore growing gun violence equates to allowing people to die, this legislation is only be beginning, not the end, of the national dialogue on gun safety reform. Americans are demanding further common sense solutions and gun safety to keep our schools, churches, hospitals, grocery stores and communities safe from the scourge of gun violence. Militarizing our schools and communities, arming teachers, and single door entry are not solutions to this national crisis. Children should not have to learn in fear. Black and Brown people should not be afraid to shop for their families. No parent or grandparent should have to bury their child due to gun violence. Our next steps to ensure gun safety for our kids and communities must include banning assault weapons, taking ghost guns off the streets, comprehensive background checks, and promoting gun buy-backs.”
“For too long, the gun lobby has bought politicians and used them to prevent any commonsense gun safety legislation from being enacted. It shouldn’t take the massacre of two teachers and nineteen children in Uvalde or the deaths of ten Black people at the hands of a white supremacist in Buffalo to address this heart-wrenching crisis. This should not be a partisan issue. Choosing to protect gun manufacturers over protecting our children is a clear policy choice – one that values guns over the lives of our kids. Mass shooting events should not be part and parcel of American life. We should be defined by our compassion not divided by our allegiances and affiliations. Common-sense policy can change the legacy we leave our children. The time to act is now.”
More on the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act is available here.