Earlier this year, President Obama announced a series of commonsense steps to keep guns out of the wrong hands, to make our communities safer from gun violence, to increase mental health treatment and reporting, and to help shape the future of gun safety technology.
In keeping with the President’s commitment to reduce gun violence, this Tuesday, May 24th, the White House is hosting a Gun Violence Prevention Convening to bring together governors, attorneys general, state legislators, city and county officials, and tribal leaders to discuss progress being made at the local level across the country. We look forward to hosting these leaders – from nearly every state – and hearing about the important work they are doing to keep their communities safe.
The facts are undeniable.
Over 100,000 people have died as a result of gun violence in America over the past decade. Millions more have been the victim of assaults, robberies, and other crimes involving a gun – and many of these crimes have been committed by people who should not have been able to purchase a gun. In addition, during the same time period, hundreds of thousands of Americans have committed suicide with a gun while hundreds of law enforcement officers have been shot to death in the line of service.
That is why the Obama Administration has taken significant steps to reduce gun violence, and why we will continue calling on Congress to pass the kinds of commonsense reforms supported by the vast majority of the American people, including the vast majority of gun owners.
It is also why we are seeing so much great progress in states and cities across the nation. In Connecticut, for example, the Governor introduced and will soon sign legislation that protects victims of domestic violence by preventing people served with temporary restraining orders from keeping their guns. In Oregon, the state legislature committed to keeping firearms out of the hands of violent criminals, by passing legislation requiring background checks for all private sales of firearms. In San Francisco, Mayor Ed Lee is spearheading an effort to use technology to reduce gun violence.
These and many other leaders across the country have made it clear that there are steps that can be taken to address the issue of gun violence consistent with the Second Amendment. And we are confident that, as a country, we will continue to make progress in keeping our children and communities safe.
Vice President Joe Biden’s remarks at the state and local leaders convening will be livestreamed at 3:15pm ET and can be viewed at obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/live.