Item #86 - Comprehensive Approach to Reducing Gun Violence

Only City Council members and authorized staff are allowed to post on this message board.
Paige Ellis
Posts: 62
Joined: Mon Jan 14, 2019 4:37 pm

Item #86 - Comprehensive Approach to Reducing Gun Violence

Post by Paige Ellis »

Colleagues,

Like many of our constituents, I struggle to make sense of the tragic number of lives taken in recent weeks due to gun violence. A series of mass shootings, including the loss of 19 children and two teachers at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, lead many to fear for the security of our families and our ability to safely access public spaces. It is a difficult, trying time that inspires emotions of anger, confusion and even despair.

These feelings are compounded by the reality that gun violence continues to unfold in our communities almost daily; the result of domestic violence, personal grievance, hate, negligence and criminal acts. Gun related homicides continue to disproportionately impact people of color. Tragically, more than 60% of all gun related deaths are the result of suicide.

In crisis local officials find resolve. Many times this council has stood with the majority of Austinites in demanding common sense action to end gun violence. I seek to build on this value by bringing Item # 86 to this week’s agenda (https://www.austintexas.gov/edims/docum ... ?id=385623). Co-sponsored by MPT Alter, CMs Vela and Tovo, this resolution puts forth a comprehensive set of proposals to amplify the voice of constituents while expanding our local, community driven approach.

These proposals include, but are not limited to, expanding our legislative agendas by calling to reinstate the assault weapons ban, raise the age of purchase, implement universal background checks and pass a federal “red flag” law.

Locally, we must strengthen our commitment to the Office of Violence Prevention, continue safe storage education and foster more consistent collaborations between law enforcement, prosecutors and community leaders. To focus our policy efforts, we are calling on the city manager to review our previous gun violence directives and report back to us on their outcomes.

As part of this collaborative effort I am also proud to co-sponsor MPT Alter’s Item # 91, which seeks to explore local options for raising the age to purchase an AR-15. It is my sincere hope all of my colleagues will agree to support and co-sponsor both of these very important items.

Thank you,
Paige Ellis
Paige Ellis
Council Member, District 8
Steve Adler
Posts: 468
Joined: Fri Jan 16, 2015 2:12 pm

Re: Item #86 - Comprehensive Approach to Reducing Gun Violence

Post by Steve Adler »

Thank you CM Ellis for bringing this item forward. I would appreciate my name being added as a cosponsor.

I’m encouraged with seeing some steps forward coming out of the US. Senate as well as the community and stakeholder meetings held here locally last week. The cost of violence is too high and I hope we invest more resources towards violence prevention. I’m especially interested in further investigating the work of Anthony Smith, Executive Director of Cities United (https://citiesunited.org/), and expanding our violence intervention programs and supporting local teams of violence interventionists that come out of the neighborhoods in which they work. This organization was one of the presenters at last week’s summit and his organization was made available to our region through our participation in the White House Community Violence Intervention Collaborative.

-S
Mayor
Post Reply